What happens if/when you hit a burried cable TV line?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by procut, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. procut

    procut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,853

    Just curious, as it has not happened to me (yet). I know that they are often only burried a few inches deep, thus you can cut through one with just a shovel or bed edger. I know if its not marked, then your off the hook, (usually) but lets say it is marked but burried just under the sod and you cut through it. Who do you call? Who makes the repair and most importantly, who pays the bill? Thanks!
  2. scagtiger

    scagtiger LawnSite Member
    from TN
    Posts: 173

    use call before you dig and you wont have to worry about it
  3. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,776

    As far as I've always understood it, you need to have it marked and it clears you and the homeowner of any liability or cost to repair it, unless gross negligence is involved.

    If you don't have it marked, then you are stuck with the bill to repair it.

    I've hit a couple of marked DSL lines that were no more than 1 inch in the ground. Never had to pay to get it fixed.

    You would think the the utility companies would make their sub contractors who bury the lines, bury them deeper. Seems like a waste of money to send people out to repair them.

    I always call the company assigned to the specific utility if there is a break. If it's a gas line, I call the fire department. :laugh:
  4. shovelracer

    shovelracer LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,009

    The question is what happens when you hit a TV line. The answer is nothing since voltage is not enough to be a concern. However once you hit it the finger pointing starts. I think the others explained this well enough. Years ago I hit a TV cable that they said was 12" or more under. I hit it at 5". They repaired it no charge, but the client missed his favorite show and was not happy.

    Ive seen copper propane lines run in the top 2" of a lawn for the whole distance. One was actually clipped by a lawn mower at one point and although not leaking its integrity was seriously compromised. It was probably like that for years. Imagine my surprise when I discovered this. Always call before you dig.
  5. keepcuttin

    keepcuttin LawnSite Member
    Posts: 62

    Cable goes out................................
  6. procut

    procut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,853

    Alright, I guess that pretty much answers it. owever, what would you guys say "average" depth for a cable TV line?

    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,526

    the call before you dig doesnt usually mark cable tv wire. ive cut a few while edging beds. called the cable company and the came out and fixed, they ran a new wire and only put it about and inch or two deep. when i asked why they dont go deeper they told me its cheaper to replace the wire than to spend the time to bury it deep enough. last year i hit one while aerating a lawn it couldnt have been more than half an inch deep.
  9. VO Landscape Design

    VO Landscape Design LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 358

    Cable isn't so bad. Don't hit a fiber optic line, major pain to have fixed.
  10. Focal Point Landscapes

    Focal Point Landscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 401

    I carry repair parts - its an easy fix and minimizes inconvenience to the client.

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