April is Safe Digging Month. April’s warm weather makes it the perfect time to increase safe digging awareness as you begin your spring DIY projects. The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) encourages you to “Call 811 Before you Dig!” 8-1-1 is the free, national call-before-you-dig phone number.
“Whether you are installing a fence, securing a swing set, or planting trees, it’s important to call 8-1-1,” said PSC Chairman Andrew Giles Fay. “Accidentally hitting an underground utility line while digging, could harm you and those around you, so be safe with a free call to 8-1-1.”
Buried utility lines are damaged once every nine minutes across the United States, causing serious injuries and/or service disruption to entire neighborhoods. Before you dig in your yard or at a construction site, you must first call 8-1-1 to receive the necessary underground utility clearances.
An 811 call notifies affected utilities to dispatch crews to mark the approximate location of underground utility lines to help prevent damages. Failing to call before you dig can potentially result in fines and penalties including repair costs.
In Florida, 811 is managed by the Sunshine State One Call Center. Hours are 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Make sure you call at least two working days before your “digging” project start date. This gives the utility companies time to find and mark buried lines on your property. In addition to calling 811, you can reach the Sunshine State One Call Center at 1-800-432-4770.
For more information on 811, visit www.call811.com, or access the PSC’s Consumer Tip, 8-1-1 Know What’s Below. April’s Call Before You Dig Campaign is supported by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Administration. The Sunshine State One Call Center’s website is: www.sunshine811.com.
For additional information, visit www.floridapsc.com.
Follow the PSC on Twitter, @floridapsc.