Call Before You Dig
What is 811? It’s the national number designated by the Federal Communications Commission to help protect do-it-yourselfers, landscapers and contractors from unintentionally hitting underground utility lines while working on digging projects, both small and large.
Why should I call 811? South Carolina Law requires a 72-hour notice (three working days) before you excavate. Why? In order to reduce and/or prevent dig-ins. A dig-in can cause death or injury, damage to public or private property, and loss or interruption of services.
Who will I speak to? In the area served by Horry Electric Cooperative, you’ll be connected with The Palmetto Utility Protection Service, Inc. (PUPS). PUPS is a corporation formed and funded by participating utility companies to improve community and job safety, and to promote improved service through damage reduction to utilities.
What happens when I call? The computerized notification center will establish a computer link between those who dig underground and those who operate underground facilities. The service is FREE and one call does it all, as long as all of the utilities involved are members of PUPS.
What information do I need to provide? When your call is answered, be prepared to provide the following:
- Telephone number
- Name of caller
- County and city
- Address or job location
- Start date and time
- Type of work
- Contractor address
If you’re planning to do it yourself or hire a professional, smart digging means calling 811 before each job.
Homeowners often make risky assumptions about whether or not they should get their utility lines marked, but every digging job requires a call – even small projects, like planting trees and shrubs. The depth of utility lines vary and there may be multiple utility lines in a common area. Digging without calling can disrupt service to an entire neighborhood, harm you and those around you, and potentially result in fines and repair costs. Calling 811 before every digging job gets your underground utility lines marked for free and helps prevent undesired consequences.
Having lines located before you dig can save you:
- Costly repairs to damaged pipes, lines, etc.
- Delays in construction
- Wasted crew time
- Personal injury or property damage
The alternate phone number for PUPS is 1-888-721-7877.