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Safe Digging Month 2015

Contacting Georgia 811, by phone or online, begins an important communication process to member utility companies who have service in the area of your project. “The smart and safe way to dig is to always contact Georgia 811 before every digging project, every time. Installing a mail box, fence, pool or even if you have hired a professional to do work for you, all digging projects need to be done safely.  It not only saves lives, but money and time. If you have dug in the past without calling, don’t make that mistake again. The call is free and having the underground utilities marked is free,” explains Claudette Campbell, President & CEO, Georgia 811.

 

Commission Chairman Chuck Eaton said, “We are pleased to work together with Georgia 811, our federal partners, and the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) to prevent damages from occurring to the state’s underground utility facilities. Our common goals are to prevent the disruption of utility services and personal injuries that result from accidents which damage underground facilities.”

 

The Georgia Public Service Commission is charged with the enforcement of the state’s underground utilities damage prevention programs as a result of state legislation approved in 2000. The Commission also enforces federal pipeline safety standards under an agreement with the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

 

Commission Vice-chair Lauren “Bubba” McDonald said, “I want to remind anyone who excavates to call before you dig by placing a call to 8-1-1. It’s free and it’s the law. A simple phone call can prevent the disruptions and economic losses that can occur when underground utilities are damaged.”

 

In 2014, Georgia 811 took 1,024,888 locate requests. This is an 8.4% increase over 2013. During April, Safe Digging month, 98,510 requests were sent to utility members, 9% over last year’s Safe Digging month.

 

Georgia 811 notifies member utility companies where and when you plan to dig. For each request that is made to Georgia 811, an average of 8 member companies are notified. These member companies dispatch locate technicians to mark the underground lines with colored paint and/or flags. By respecting the location of the paint marks and flags, you can avoid dangerous contact with underground facilities.

Notify Georgia 811 at least two (2) business days before excavation begins. Know what’s below. Call before you dig. Dial 811 or apply online with the eRequest at www.Georgia811.com.

 

Established in 1974, Georgia 811 is a non-profit organization comprised of over 778-member utility companies, including cities and counties throughout Georgia that benefit through reductions in lost time, accidents, service interruptions and costly repairs. Georgia 811 has been an industry leader in preventing damage to underground utility facilities and promoting safety and efficiency through high quality and economical notification services. In addition, Georgia 811 provides training and education while encouraging compliance with all applicable laws.

 

Georgia 811 strives to encourage four Dig Safely practices: 1) Call before you dig. 2) Wait the required amount of time for marking. 3) Respect the flags and marks. 4) Dig with care.

 

Georgia 811, keeping Georgians safe and connected. Contact Georgia 811 before you dig, every project, every time, dial 811 or online at www.Georgia811.com. For more about the Georgia “Dig Law”, visit the Georgia Public Service Commission’s website atwww.psc.state.ga.us.

 

Click here to view Gov. Deal’s proclamation of Safe Digging Month.

Click here to view the Georgia Public Service Commission’s release about Safe Digging Month.

 

 

Caption: Industry Stakeholders gathered at Georgia’s Capitol with Governor Deal and First Lady Deal on April 29, 2015 in honor of Safe Digging Month.

Pictured above, in alphabetical order: Allen Bell, Georgia Power and Georgia 811 Board Member; Mike Bell, Georgia Power; Mike Bolden, Georgia DOT; Artie Buff, PHMSA; Maria Copeland, Georgia 811; Will Culbreath, Georgia PSC; Bill Edge, Georgia PSC; Megan Estes, Georgia 811; Holly Files, Georgia 811; Jewel Hazelton, Cobb EMC; Wendell “Rob” Holbrook, Cobb EMC and Georgia 811 Board member; Chip Little, Colonial Pipeline; Rachel Marich, Georgia Power and Georgia 811 Board Member; Joseph Martin, Clayton County Water Authority and Georgia 811 Board Member; Terry McLaurin, Georgia 811; Laurlyn Mustaki, Georgia Association of Broadcasters; Terry Pritchett, Georgia PSC; Keith Reese, Kinder Morgan; Frankie Rigdon, Ellijay Telephone and Georgia 811 Board Member; Roy Roger, Blount Construction; Chris Sosebee, Geogia Power; Tom Tarver, Kinder Morgan and Georgia 811 Board Member; Christopher Voso, USIC; Meghan Wade, Georgia 811; Pat Wingo, AT&T and Chair of the Georgia 811 Board of Directors