For more information contact: Linda Berry, (785) 271-3269 or Samir Arif, (785) 271-3188
March 27, 2015
Governor Brownback Proclaims April "Safe Digging Month" in Kansas
Topeka, KS - Today, Governor Sam Brownback issued a proclamation declaring the month of April as "Safe Digging Month" in Kansas. The proclamation, in concurrence with National Safe Digging Month, reminds Kansans to call 811 before starting any outdoor digging projects.
"The Kansas Corporation Commission joins Governor Brownback in strongly encouraging individuals and companies to call 811 before they begin digging," said Chair Shari Feist Albrecht. "By locating and marking underground lines homeowners and companies are making the important decision to keep their communities safe and connected to their underground utility system. Enjoy the upcoming weather, but know what's below."
The Kansas Corporation Commission, Kansas One-Call, the Kansas Pipeline Association, the Common Ground Alliance, and Governor Brownback are encouraging excavators and homeowners to call 811 before they begin digging projects to prevent injuries, property damage, and inconvenient outages. A utility line is damaged by digging once every eight minutes nationwide, and one-third of those incidents are caused by failure of the professional excavator or homeowner to call 811 before digging.
When dialing 811, callers are connected to Kansas One-Call, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of the intent to dig. Calls are taken 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Requests can also be entered at www.kansasonecall.com. Excavators and homeowners are required to make a request at least two working days in advance of beginning a digging project. Professional locators are then sent to the requested digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags or spray paint. Once lines have been accurately marked, digging can begin.
Striking a single line can result in injury, repair costs, fines, and inconvenient outages. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, requires a call to 811. The depth of utility lines varies, and there may be multiple lines in a common area. Some utility lines are buried only a few inches below the surface, making them easy to strike during shallow digging projects. Installing a mailbox, landscaping, putting in a fence, and building a deck are all examples of digging projects that necessitate a call to 811 before starting.