Planning a facility expansion or outdoor landscaping project that involves digging? Calling 811 is a smart business decision.

811: Make That Call Before You Break Ground


businesswoman making call

Are you planning a facility expansion or landscaping project that involves digging? Your location may contain underground utility lines. Call 811 before you dig. Knowing where utility lines are buried can help you avoid injury, service outages and costly repairs.

Call 811 from anywhere in the country a few days prior to digging, and you will be routed to your local call center. Tell the operator where you will be digging, what type of work you will be doing and when. Within just a few days, your local utility companies will visit your site and mark the location of any underground lines, free of charge.

Each utility type is marked with a specific color:

  • Red for electric
  • Yellow for natural gas
  • Orange for telecommunications
  • Blue for water
  • Green for sewage

Who's behind the 811 number? The 811 campaign is operated by the Common Ground Alliance (CGA), an association created to work with the utility industry to prevent damage to underground utility infrastructure and ensure public safety. Although a private association, CGA grew out of a U.S. Department of Transportation initiative to protect underground utilities.