THE EXTENSION CONNECTION: National Safe Digging Month

Published: Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 04:35 PM.

National Safe Digging Month — recognized by the Senate and Florida’s governor — reminds diggers to call Sunshine 811 before starting outdoor digging projects.

Before installing a mailbox, fence, deck, garden or tree, call 811 to have underground lines marked.

The free service notifies utility companies of your plans. They send professional locators to identify and mark the appropriate location of underground line with paint and flags in colors that identify the utility type.

Visit to see which colors correspond with each utility.

Diggers who hit underground utility lines while digging can cause injuries, utility service outages to entire neighborhoods, and damage to the environment.

Calling 811 in Florida is the law. At least two full business days before digging, do-it-yourselfers and professional excavators must contact 811 to start the process of marking underground utility lines.

Be sure that all utilities have been marked before grabbing the shovel.

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