Now that your utility lines are marked, you can begin digging with care. Indiana state law mandates a 2-foot safety zone on either side of the marks. In the safety zone, you can only dig with hand tools. The size of the safety zone will depend on the size of the underground facility, which is sometimes noted by the utility locating technicians. For example, if a water line is marked as 6 inches wide, the safety zone on both sides of the line is 2 feet 3 inches from the mark. You will only want to use mechanical equipment outside of the zone after you have exposed the line(s) by safely digging with hand tools.
After 2 full working days, confirm that all utility operators have visited your property by comparing the various colors of the marks on your property to the list of utilities given to you. If a utility operator does not locate a utility line in the designated area, a representative will let you know they do not have a conflict by calling you, or painting an “OK” along with the company’s initials in the corresponding utility color. For example, if you do not have a gas line running through the area, the utility operator will write an “OK” in yellow paint in the designated area.
The marking process typically takes 2 full working days, meaning if you contact Indiana 811 on a Tuesday, the utility operators have Wednesday and Thursday to mark the approximate location of lines. Each line will be marked in the color that corresponds to the appropriate utility.
Make a free call to Indiana 811 by simply calling 811 or (800) 382-5544. You can also visit the 811Now website to request underground facility markings at a single address. After contacting Indiana 811, you will be given a ticket number and a list of all the utility operators who will be responding to your request. Indiana 811 will also answer any questions you have about the utility locating process.
Before you contact Indiana 811, you will need to know specific details about where you plan to dig, including the street address, county and township. You will also need the name and phone number of the person or company who will be doing the digging. We recommend you mark the designated area with white paint or flags so the utility operators will only mark that area.