August 11th (8/11) is a natural reminder for Connecticut residents to call 811 before digging in your yard!
Connecticut-statewide information (August 2, 2021) - With August 11th almost here, Call Before You Dig, Inc. in Hamden, Connecticut hopes this date, 8/11, will serve as a natural, convenient reminder for residents to call 811 prior to any digging projects to have underground utility lines marked to avoid unintentionally hitting them. Call Before You Dig (CBYD) is a non-profit organization comprised of all public utility companies and municipalities within Connecticut. CBYD is a free service that provides homeowners and professional excavators with a toll free call by dialing 8-1-1 for locating and marking underground facilities by its members. Calling CBYD before you dig is the law in Connecticut.
With most residents still working from home, more home DIY projects are underway this Summer which can bring the danger of exposure to hits on vital public utility lines with them. Digging without knowing what is below the ground risks causing property damage, injury and even death, according to representatives of Call Before You Dig.
Anthony R. Willemain, the Call Before You Dig Center Manager, stated, “If you are digging with power or mechanized equipment, it is the law to “Call Before You Dig!” Even if you are excavating by hand, it is smart and safe to “Call Before You Dig!”…Notify CBYD two working days in advance to have the location of buried utility pipes and cable lines located and marked out. Contact us at www.CBYD.com or call “811” to avoid digging accidents.”
When calling 811, the federally-mandated national "Call Before You Dig" number, or executing an e-ticket from the cbyd.com website, homeowners are connected to Call Before You Dig, the local one-call center, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. Professional locators are sent to the requested digging site to mark the locations of underground lines with flags or spray paint. Call Before You Dig requires a call or click for a ticket at least 2 full working days before the planned project start date.
CBYD's mission is to "Provide communication and education to improve safety when excavating”. Examples of projects requiring an eticket or a call to 8-1-1 would be digging for a new pool, deck or mailbox, landscaping and planting trees. Digging only a few inches can pose risks. Striking a single line can cause injury, repair costs, fines and inconvenient outages or worse. Every digging project, no matter how big or small, warrants a call to 811. Smart, safe digging is no accident.
CBYD.com has a user guide and user-friendly tools on their website for damage reporting (Damage Access), locate request status, reminders and documentation in advance of their start date (Positive Response) as well as a free online education course (Education Access), where users have access to a self-paced, convenient online course. After completion of the course and exam, learners will receive a certificate acknowledging their successful completion and we will send them a free t-shirt.
PURA, the State of Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority, provides governmental oversight to the CBYD program. They play the role of the enforcer for CBYD and excavators. If somebody violates the regulations, PURA will investigate it, conduct a hearing and possibly prosecute them with fines. The latest posted report shows fines paid in 2020 of over $250,000.00 at the following link: https://portal.ct.gov/PURA/Gas-Pipeline-Safety/Call-Before-You-Dig/CBYD-Monitoring-and-Enforcement Compliance with this law not only ensures the safety of people and property, but it also protects excavators and people from fines and lawsuits. We all share responsibility for our safety. It’s free and it’s the law. It’s also better to be safe than sorry.
Please visit www.CBYD.com for more information about 811 and the call-before-you-dig process.