The Saratoga Sun -

Dig it ... safely


April is National Safe Digging Month, and as the weather allows more outdoor projects, Black Hills Energy is emphasizing safety by providing important guidelines for safe digging.

Whether you’re a homeowner planting a shrub or a contractor using a backhoe, you must “Call Before You Dig” by dialing 811. It’s free, it’s safe and it’s the law.

Contact One Call of Wyoming toll-free at 811 or go to at least two business days before you plan to dig. Utility specialists will visit your site for free and mark the approximate location of buried utility lines with color-coded paint or flags at no charge to you. Yellow, for example, marks natural gas lines.

More safe digging tips

Before utility specialists are scheduled to mark your underground utility lines, paint a white line around your planned excavation site. “White-lining” helps the line locator understand your plans and reduces the chance for project delays.

While digging, keep your shovel face parallel to the utility marking.

You can also learn more safe digging tips at

“Our first priority always is to protect public safety,” said Shirley Welte, Black Hills Energy’s Wyoming vice president of natural gas and electric operations. “Any time of year, you must call before you dig.”

Anyone who doesn’t follow Call Before You Dig laws can face substantial penalties. Striking an underground utility line could leave you responsible for expensive repairs to public or private property. It could also leave you to blame for a service outage to a neighborhood or responsible for grave injury.


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