August 11th is designated as National Safe Digging Day and Rhode Island Energy reminds our customers planning to dig, for any type of project, to first contact Dig Safe to prevent damage to underground utilities. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, requires a call to Dig Safe at 811 or a visit to submit a request to mark the location of utility lines below the ground. Whether you’re installing a deck or planting shrubs, doing it yourself or hiring a professional, state law requires that Dig Safe be notified before digging.

Knowing where underground utility lines are buried before you dig will help protect your family and your community. Striking a single underground utility line can result in injury, repair costs, fines and potential outages. Calling 811 helps avoid an incident that requires police, fire, or utility response.

“Safety is a top priority for Rhode Island Energy. Educating Rhode Islanders to call 811 before digging is critical to protecting our customers and the communities we serve,” said Michele Leone, Vice President of Gas Operations at Rhode Island Energy.

Rhode Island state law requires you give Dig Safe at least 72-hour notice – not including weekends and holidays – before digging begins. A quick phone call to 811 or a visit to connects you to their local call center, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of your intent to dig. Professional locators then arrive at the digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags, spray paint or both. The service is free of charge.

The utility marks should stay intact for the duration of the digging project. If the marks are compromised for any reason, call Dig Safe back at 811. In Rhode Island, your ticket expires if digging has not started before 30 days from the date of issue.

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