Dig Safely New York to celebrate safety, education, community today

East Syracuse — Imagine receiving a $10,000 fine for striking an underground utility line. Imagine accidentally cutting power to a vital community service like your area hospital. Or knocking out power to your neighborhood right before the big game. Every six minutes a damage to an underground facility occurs around the country because someone decided to dig before contacting 811 first. 811 provides a free, easy to access, solution to secure your budget and keep your community safe.

What is 811? It is the national number designated by the Federal Communications Commission that connects professionals and homeowners to their local one-call center — Dig Safely New York, Inc. 811 is used to help protect do-it-yourselfers, landscapers, and contractors from unintentionally hitting underground utility lines while working on personal and/or professional digging projects.

In 2016, 29 percent of all reported gas damages to Dig Safely New York were due to failure to contact 811 before commencing a digging project. Of that 29 percent, 19 percent were indicated to be landscaping projects, 10 percent were fencing projects, and 4 percent were driveway projects. Never assume the depth of a utility line, events such as erosion may change the utility location over time.

As the convenience of 811 grows, excuses for not contacting Dig Safely New York are shrinking. More than just a phone call away, 811 provides community members and professionals the freedom of online reporting through the Single Ticket Program, i-Notice, and Automated Positive Response (APR). These free, user-friendly platforms are accessible 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Surprises will be shared throughout the day today, including the winner of the Cats in Hard Hats and Decked out Dogs photo contest! Everyone is invited to celebrate 811 Day on Facebook, Twitter, and www.digsafelynewyork.com.

What Is Dig Safely New York, Inc.

Dig Safely New York, Inc. is the one-call center serving as a link between you and the underground utility operators. Established in 1969, Dig Safely New York promotes an easier, safer digging environment, and serves the entire state of New York outside of Long Island and New York City, which is covered by New York City One-Call. Headquartered in East Syracuse, our Customer Service Representatives in our East Syracuse and Latham call centers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to receive calls regarding planned excavations. CSRs then distribute the information from these calls to, on average, six facility owners/operators. Excavators, contractors, design engineers, and home/property owners can place a location request by calling us toll free at 811 or 1-800-962-7962, or by using our online location request programs: i-Notices and Single Address Ticket.