According to the ISE’s article on damage prevention, infrastructure damage costs an estimated $30 billion year-over-year. And while some can be prevented by establishing careful locating and excavation practices, utility line strikes, and other damages are somewhat inevitable. So, what should you do when damages threaten infrastructure operations? Below we discuss the steps to take when damages happen and how to prevent them.
What Should You Do If You See Damaged Utility Lines?
If you accidentally damage or come across damaged or exposed underground utilities, there are a few things that you should know to prevent further damage and prevent injuries to yourself or others.
- First, call your state’s 811 phone line. You should do this before you start any digging however, should you damage or come across exposed or damaged utility lines, call 811 to report it.
- If it smells like gas (rotten eggs) or a hissing sound is present, it may be a gas line. Immediately leave the area and call 911.
- If sparks can be seen or heard, it may be a power line. Back away from the area without lifting your feet off the ground and call 911
- If you aren’t sure what kind of line it is, back away without lifting your feet and call 811.
- It is also important to be sure no one else enters the area of the exposed or damaged utilities.
Network Damage Prevention
The best way to prevent utility line strikes is to make sure you call 811 and get locates done on any and all underground utilities. It is always a good idea to have a second person with you to help look where you are digging to avoid any potential danger and lines. Also, taking the time to pothole areas before and as you dig or plow in order to get eyes on the utilities, helps to avoid them. It is also important to note that auditing and maintaining your network, and all its components can cut down on surprise emergencies and save money in the the long run.
With BDC as Your Partner, You'll Feel Like the King (or Queen) of the World!
At BDC Group, we take every step possible to prevent accidental strikes. Our crews and technicians are trained in damage prevention and utility line safety. We also make sure that any utilities that we lay is not only well documented, but also has some sort of locating ability. We can plan, install, maintain, and protect your network infrastructure. Let BDC be the partner your network needs when emergency strikes. Our crews are ready to respond to any emergency issue that may occur, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.