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AFTER CONTACTING 811

HOMEOWNERS

Thank you for contacting 811.

Here is what you can expect after your ticket is processed, along with other things that go beyond contacting 811.

1.

PROPERTY ACCESS

You do not have to be home, but please be sure all pets are put away, and ensure the locators have access to the property to mark the area where digging will take place.

2.

WHEN CAN I DIG?

Once you have confirmed all the utilities at your dig site have been marked, and the 2-10 full working/business days have passed.

3.

UTILITY RESPONSES

How do I know what utilities have responded?

Each utility member has a different way of communicating in regards to utilities on the property. This is referred to as a Positive Response.

What is a positive response?

Positive response is how member utility companies communicate with excavators about the status of the ticket. It lets the excavator know if an underground utility is marked, unmarked, or not in conflict.

An online positive response will be provided by the utility HERE by clicking the “Find Locate Request” option. It allows the excavator to know whether all facility owners/operators have marked the requested area prior to the beginning of the excavation

How do I know what utilities have responded?

Each utility member has a different way of communicating in regards to utilities on the property. This is referred to as a Positive Response.

What is a positive response?

Positive response is how member utility companies communicate with excavators about the status of the ticket. It lets the excavator know if an underground utility is marked, unmarked, or not in conflict.

An online positive response will be provided by the utility (HEREclick “find locate request”). It allows the excavator to know whether all facility owners/operators have marked the requested area prior to the beginning of the excavation

If your locate request status is closed or states there is no response from member facility owner/operator, we suggest you initiate a second call back to Alabama 811 to allow for the request to be resent to the member facility owners. Alabama 811 can be reached toll free by dialing 800.292.8525, or by dialing 811 from anywhere within the State of Alabama.

4.

UTILITY MARKINGS

What do the different colored markings on the ground mean?

4.

UTILITY MARKINGS

What do the different colored markings on the ground mean?

5.

PRIVATE UTILITIES

What are private utilities?

Private utilities are lines not owned by utility companies, typically found between the meter and the building. If you have a curbside meter, this can result in the property not being marked by utility companies. Other underground utilities that generally are not marked include, but are not limited to: water and sewer lines, private lighting, sprinklers, fire mains, secondary electric lines to detached garages, pools, and septic lines.

Who marks private utilities and is there a cost?

There are fees for private utility markings. A quick search online should result in a number of private locating companies in your area and most plumbing companies offer private locating upon request. The underground utilities are owned by the property owner, and it’s the owner’s responsibility to cover the cost associated with protecting private underground utilities.

6.

UTILITY COMPANIES HAVE NOT RESPONDED.

If there is no Positive Response, simply dial 811 or 1.800.292.8525, to process a locate ticket to notify utility companies to locate their lines ASAP. Some lines may not be marked because they are private.

7.

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW TO DIG SAFELY.

Why should I dig with hand tools around a marked facility?

It is the responsibility of the person digging to avoid damaging marked lines. APWA and several industries accepted best practices set 18″ on either side of the marked utility as a reasonable Tolerance Zone. Within that zone it is recommended that hand digging or other acceptable method be used to locate the exact location of the utility before more extensive excavation is started.

What is a Tolerance Zone/Margin?

 A Tolerance Zone/Margin is the amount of space adjacent to a utility line.

In Alabama, the Tolerance Zone/Margin is half the width of the utility line, plus a minimum of 18 inches, on each side of the outer edge of the line.

If digging must take place within the Tolerance Zone, you must use hand tools, until you can see the line, before using ANY power or mechanical equipment

Why should I dig with hand tools around a marked facility?

It is the responsibility of the person digging to avoid damaging marked lines. APWA and several industries accepted best practices set 18″ on either side of the marked utility as a reasonable Tolerance Zone. Within that zone it is recommended that hand digging or other acceptable method be used to locate the exact location of the utility before more extensive excavation is started.

What is a Tolerance Zone/Margin?

 A Tolerance Zone/Margin is the amount of space adjacent to a utility line.

In Alabama, the Tolerance Zone/Margin is half the width of the utility line, plus a minimum of 18 inches, on each side of the outer edge of the line.

If digging must take place within the Tolerance Zone, you must use hand tools, until you can see the line, before using ANY power or mechanical equipment

8.

IMPORTANCE OF YOUR TICKET NUMBER

Your ticket number is helpful to have if you need your worksite remarked or if you need to make any changes, and it also serves as proof that you contacted 811 before digging.

9.

MY MARKINGS ARE NO LONGER VISIBLE

You can request to have the markings refreshed by phone, by dialing 811 or 1.800.292.8525 (you will need your ticket number). Ultimately, you are responsible for knowing the condition of the worksite and when the marks have been wiped out, or moved, and need to be refreshed.

10.

REPORT DAMAGES

What do I do if I damaged/exposed a line?

Stop digging and contact 811 to process a damage ticket.

If you suspect the release of any gas or liquid as a result of the damage, follow the steps found in the link in step 11 – “What to do if there’s a gas or other hazardous materials leak?”

Report damages to Alabama 811 when a line has been hit, cut, nicked, or exposed.

As soon as any damage is discovered, including gouges, dents, or breaks to coating, cable sheath, and wiring, report the type and location of the damage to the utility and permit the utility a reasonable amount of time to make necessary repairs.

The following will need to be provided when processing a damage.

Ticket number (if you have one)

Type of line damaged/a description of the line by using physical descriptors that could help utility members determine who the line belongs to.

If you or the hired crew is on site.

If customers are with or without service.

If gas is leaking, blowing, or if water, sewage, phone or cable is visable.

An address or directions to area where line was damaged.

11.

WHAT TO DO IF THERE’S A GAS or OTHER HAZARDOUS MATERIALS LEAK

What do I do if there’s a product release?

 
  • Stop working, block off the area, and move a safe distance away.
  • Eliminate and control any and all ignition sources (ex. cell phones, cigarettes, engines…)
  • Move upwind of the leak.

Once you are at a safe distance from the suspected leak, report the leak to 911 and the utility company.

Contact 911, the facility owner directly, and notify 811 to report the damage and release.

Remain a safe distance from the suspected leak until someone from the gas company or an emergency responder says it is safe to return.

Warn others to stay away from the area.

What do I do  there’s a gas leak?

Stop working and immediately leave the area of the leak.

Do not turn electrical appliances or lights on or off or use any device that could generate a spark.

Do not use your cell phone or a landline. If you are currently on a landline, do not hang up.

Do not smoke, make a spark, or flame.

Do not start your car engine or any mechanized equipment.

Move upwind of the leak.

Once you are at a safe distance from the suspected leak, report the leak to 911 and the utility company.

Contact 911, the facility owner directly, and notify 811 to report the damage and release.

Remain a safe distance from the suspected leak until someone from the gas company or an emergency responder says it is safe to return.

Warn others to stay away from the area.

12.

FAQ’s