‘Whoever is putting the shovel in the ground should make that call': Calling before digging key to safety

Call 811 before you dig
Call 811 before you dig(Source: WBRC)
Updated: Aug. 12, 2020 at 11:19 AM EDT
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ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - A simple phone call is all it takes to keep you safe when it comes to any kind of digging or excavation work.

Cliff Meidl, Georgia 811 spokesperson, said calling before digging or excavation work is not only the law but key to safety.

Cliff Meidl, Georgia 811 spokesperson.
Cliff Meidl, Georgia 811 spokesperson.(WALB)

“One of the most important things at Georgia 811 is safety,” Meidl said. “We always want to make sure all of our community members are safe at all times.”

Tuesday marked National Safe Digging Day. Meidl said this day has a huge significance to Georgia 811, not just because it falls on Aug. 11, but it gives the nonprofit to spread awareness on safe digging.

Ready to dig? Here’s what you do:

First, contact Georgia 811 by calling 811 or (1-800) 282-7411 or by clicking here.

Meidl said to call or contact at least three business days prior to any digging or excavation work around any home or business.

But who should call?

A good rule of thumb: “Whoever is putting the shovel in the ground should make that call,” Meidl said.

Here's what some of the color markings mean:

  • Red - Electrical
  • Yellow - Gas
  • Orange - Telecommunications

Georgia 811, Meidl pointed out, is a notification center. He said those three business days give Georgia 811 the time to contact member utilities, like gas and electrical, to notify them about the planned digging or excavation.

The three business days also gives the opportunity for those utilities to go out and mark the digging spots.

“Each one of those markings, where you’re going to dig, has significant meaning,” Meidl said. “What may lay beneath the ground for you. We always ask to dig safe and respect the flags.”

| Click here for more information |

Watch WALB’s full interview with Meidl below:

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