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snap12.5
03-28-2005, 12:36 AM
what situations dictate locating underground utilities??? 1.renovating a lawn with skidsteer 2.planting large trees 3.grading 4.installing patios or retaining walls 5.installing small (3gal) shrubs???
i think that gas lines are usually 30in below the surface. what about all other utilities???
if u do hit something, what are some steps to take to correct the problem? -try to fix yourself or call gas company or elec comp etc.

Groundcover Solutions
03-28-2005, 03:35 AM
Well any time you are digging period you should call to have them located. It costs nothing, at least hear in Michigan. Other utilities such as cable can be only centimeters from the surface. Also when it comes to repairing... don't even think about trying to do it yourself you will be slapped with one nice bill if you do. If you hit a gas line you better call the gas company and quick as well as 911 that is one big fire hazard as well as a health hazard. Always call the utility that you hit so they can get out and get it fixed or take needed precautions!!!! But to be safe just make sure you plan out a few days before you plan to dig call the place, in Michigan it is miss dig, and then dig!!! Always better to play it safe and not be sorry in the long run.

Coffeecraver
03-28-2005, 06:25 AM
Call Before You Dig

Accidentally hitting utility lines is extremely dangerous and may result in serious injury or death. Such accidents also endanger others and can disrupt utility services for customers. Be safe -- protect yourself and those around you by avoiding underground utility lines that can injure or kill.

Underground power lines, communication cables, gas lines, water lines or other utilities may lie at various depths below the surface of your property or areas of planned excavation. It is important to be safe before excavating by calling the appropriate state notification center and allowing time for the utility companies in that area to mark the location of their underground facilities.

It also is important to respect the marks indicating the presence of underground utilities. Excavation should be carefully performed only after confirming that all utilities have marked the location of their facilities. Remember that the locating of underground utility lines is not an exact science and location marks have varying bands of required accuracy, depending on a particular state's requirements. These can range from 18 to 24 inches from the actual facility.

Each state has its own notification center and legal requirements regarding the location of underground facilities. Select the appropriate state below to learn more:

North Carolina
Ohio
Pennsylvania
Virginia
West Virginia
Other States (national directory)


Ohio

Call, toll-free, 1-800-362-2764 at least two working days before digging. The Ohio Utilities Protection Service (OUPS) will alert Dominion East Ohio and other member utilities of your plans to dig, then ask the utilities to mark any underground pipes or cables at your location.

They'll also tell you about any other companies that you must notify before you begin digging. This is a free service.


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Lawnchoice
03-28-2005, 07:55 AM
We New Englanders are very lucky with locating the underground utilites. Hopefully everyone here takes advantage of this great service http://www.digsafe.com/ Check them out and maybe there is something in your area that you can utilize for location.

I never dig without a quick phonecall to them. You can also submit online which I haven't done yet.

Have used them for years!

DLS1
03-28-2005, 09:54 AM
Every state probably has a central number to call if you are digging. Digging also includes aeration. If you don't call the central utility number to get the lines marked and you hit a cable line or whatever you can be held liable for the damages.

AintNoFun
03-28-2005, 11:53 AM
we call for pretty much everything, like someone said above it doesn't cost anything... a contractor here last month was digging without a market, hit a gas line next thing you know the store exploded they were working outside of... local guys probably saw it on the news, the petco... people got seriously hurt...

DLS1
03-28-2005, 03:48 PM
In Missouri and probably everywhere else you must also stay 2' on each side of the marked lines (total of 4'). Even then the utilities could be off where the lines are marked but at least you are covered if you hit something since they marked the lines.

LB1234
03-28-2005, 06:26 PM
we call for pretty much everything, like someone said above it doesn't cost anything... a contractor here last month was digging without a market, hit a gas line next thing you know the store exploded they were working outside of... local guys probably saw it on the news, the petco... people got seriously hurt...


Sad part is...it was mismarked by the gas company...operator thought it was all clear...no flags, no paint, then WAM!!

Talk about a lawsuit...

MarcusLndscp
03-28-2005, 09:09 PM
Sad part is...it was mismarked by the gas company...operator thought it was all clear...no flags, no paint, then WAM!!

Talk about a lawsuit...


We had a similar instance on a large commercial job we were doing. We were digging down about a foot give or take a little to install a series of patios, walls, granite stairs, and plantings. Our top equipment operator was digging along in the backhoe and all of a sudden he stopped and asked us to do a little diggin by hand because he thought he felt something unusual. After a couple seconds we exposed a gas main within that one foot. We were told the line had been put in so many feet below grade and that digging down a foot or so was no worry.
What happened? In the initial phases of the site work the line was installed at the proper depth but they then came in later and graded around the condo removing nearly all of the material that existed leaving the line only inches below ground. We did have it marked and did hit the line with the backhoe but our operator new that he hit something other than a rock or stump so he backed the bucket off slowly and we exposed the line by hand. It was not broken but it was hit so they had to replace the whole line and then bury it again at the proper depth. Damn commercial jobs!!!

LB1234
03-28-2005, 09:24 PM
Long story short the gas and electric guys marked the wrong property on me ~2 weeks ago. He explained he would be fined and responsible if something had happened when I digged because I did in fact make the call and he did in fact mismark the house...that's nice but theres a good chance I'd be dead or seriously injured.

Anyways...He said the same thing you did...what happens is the gas guys come in, dig to the proper depth and then the contractors wind up taking more soil away and the line becomes only inches deep...PHEW! I was under the impression the gas lines were metal...no sir...they are PVC...he said oh ya...if your not carefull you could crack one with a hand shovel... :help:

neighborguy
03-29-2005, 06:27 PM
I can't even count the number of times that we have had to excavate to find a gas line just so that we knew where it was. Around here the lines are supposed to be 18" (as are all the other utilities). Even if you find it at a given depth, that does not mean that it stays at that depth. If they find a large rock while putting the line in on a Friday afternoon; do you think that they dug up the rock to be sure the line was at 18" or lower? I really don't think so. Now your line goes from 18" (or more) to 12" and maybe stays there or goes back to depth. I have had luck with catching the marking guy on site and asking him about how deep ( you can't really hold them to the figure) and they have usually given an aproximate. If I was tol 30" and I only have to dig 10, I have felt pretty safe. Also be sure to dig parallel to the line, as you are more likely to find it safely than accidently cutting it by digging perpendicular to the line.

TerraVenture
03-29-2005, 06:41 PM
It is a law here in New Hampshire to call dig safe. The utilities come out and mark roughly were the utilities are. My biggest problem is leach fields and irrigation systems. There is no one to call about this.

PLM-1
03-29-2005, 06:50 PM
In Missouri and probably everywhere else you must also stay 2' on each side of the marked lines (total of 4'). Even then the utilities could be off where the lines are marked but at least you are covered if you hit something since they marked the lines.

Never heard that one before...where did you get that info?? (btw, not calling you a liar...just never heard that before) I've had them mark several times and was never told that. And my parents' were mis-marked when they were putting in their pool. Electic, cable, and telephone...It wasn't even close!

jreiff
03-29-2005, 07:03 PM
Were they mark that utility does not mean that the utility is right were that mark is. DLS1 is right you are suppose to hand dig 2' from each side if that line.

We have every property that we work on located. Have had many times take the bed edger out and trench for edging and have hit cable line, telephone, irrigation, gas lines. You jsut never know what is under you. Better to be safe than sorry.

Make sure you give them 48hrs to locate.

DLS1
03-30-2005, 11:31 AM
Never heard that one before...where did you get that info?? (btw, not calling you a liar...just never heard that before) I've had them mark several times and was never told that. And my parents' were mis-marked when they were putting in their pool. Electic, cable, and telephone...It wasn't even close!

Call 1-800-DIG-RITE.