The Texas Pipeline Awareness Alliance (TPAA) hopes this date on the calendar, 8/11, will serve as a natural reminder for residents to call 811 prior to any digging project to have underground utility lines marked. This comes on the heels of a recent report, which determined an underground utility line is damaged during digging projects every three minutes nationwide.

“We want to remind homeowners and professional contractors alike to call 811 before digging to eliminate the risk of striking an underground utility line,” said Kelee Lusk, with Atmos Energy, and President of TPAA. “It really is the only way to know which utilities are buried in your area and there is really no excuse to not take advantage of this fast, free and easy service. In fact, in Texas it is the law that you must Call 811.”

When calling 811, homeowners and contractors are connected to Texas 811, their local one-call center, which then notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. Professional locators are sent to the requested digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags, spray paint or both.

Striking a single line can cause injury, repair costs, fines and inconvenient outages. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, requires a call to 811. Installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree, installing a sprinkler system and laying a patio are all examples of digging projects that need a call to 811 before starting.

Visit www.pipeline-safety.org for more information about 811 and safe digging practices.