For Immediate Release
April is National Safe Digging Month
BALTIMORE (April 10, 2014) – April is National Safe Digging Month and BGE reminds all customers and contractors to call 811 to have utility-owned underground lines marked before digging. Nationwide, every eight minutes someone damages an underground utility line because of digging without first calling 811.
Striking an underground electric or natural gas pipe can cause serious injury, damages and service interruptions. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, warrants a call to Miss Utility at 811. And, for most digging projects, calling Miss Utility is the law. Installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree and laying a patio are all examples of digging projects where a call to 811 should be one of the first steps.
BGE has nearly 16,000 circuit miles of underground electric lines and more than 7,000 miles of buried of natural gas lines throughout the central Maryland region. In addition to BGE’s lines, there are underground communications cables, water and sewer lines and other utilities. Even properties that are not served by a particular service may still have utility lines running below ground.
When calling 811, customers and contractors are connected to Miss Utility to provide information about their project. Miss Utility will notify BGE and all member utilities of your plan to dig. The utilities will then mark their underground facilities. Calls are required at least two business days in advance of digging.
Once lines are located, excavators must also understand the markings and look for evidence of unmarked lines, such as water and sewer lines on private property. Sewer clean-outs and water valve covers are examples of equipment that can indicate the presence of underground lines.
BGE works hard to ensure the safety of its customers, area contractors and its employees. As part of this effort, the company has a safety-focused advertising campaign to educate those who work around overhead and underground utility lines. For information on digging safely, including how to get lines marked and what to do after lines are marked, watch BGE’s Dig Smart video at www.bge.com/DigSmart. Excavators can also contact the BGE Damage Prevention team at 410.470.6698 to arrange for free damage prevention training.
To learn more visit www.bge.com/811.
BGE, headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest gas and electric utility, delivering power to more than 1.2 million electric customers and more than 655,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company’s approximately 3,400 employees are committed to the safe and reliable delivery of gas and electricity, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy provider, with 2013 revenues of approximately $24.9 billion. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.