Avoiding Disaster by Practicing Safe Digging
There are many underground lines that are buried and unmarked in your yard, at your business, or on the farm. Each year, thousands of these lines are damaged. Hitting underground lines with a shovel, backhoe, or other equipment can be dangerous – even deadly – and interrupt vital utility service.
Before you put a shovel in the ground to tackle any project, large or small, call MISS DIG at 811. The MPSC wants all Michiganders to stay safe when working outside.
Here are some important Safe Digging tips to practice:
- First, be in the know! All utilities have underground assets
- Call 811 at least three business days before you start digging for any project, it’s free and it’s the law!
- Technicians from your local utilities will mark underground lines with color-coded flags.
- Be sure to stay four feet away from any marked lines.
- Never remove a utility flag that you did not request.
- If you need to dig closer than four feet, use hand tools to expose utility lines.
- Marking utility lines does not indicate how deep the line is. Lines can vary and may be closer to the surface than you think.
- If you strike a line, call 911 first and then call your local utility.
- Utility flags should only be removed by the person who called in the MISS DIG request.
- For more about MISS DIG and safe digging, see the MPSC’s consumer tip sheet.