When planning any outdoor work that involves digging or working near power lines, the first step is to call 811, the number for Georgia's Utilities Protection Center (UPC). If you prefer, you can request an e-Ticket from UPC by completing this online form.
To avoid the unpleasant surprise of digging into an electrical line or water pipe, be sure to call the UPC at least 48 hours in advance. The 48 hours begins on the next business day after the request, excluding non-business days. Representatives of each utility will mark the location of existing lines with colored flags so you can dig safely.
When you call, be ready with the necessary information, including address, the extent of work, caller's name, contact person and phone numbers.
Always hand dig within two feet on either side of marked lines. If damage or disturbance of an underground line occurs, immediately notify the affected company.
Overhead high voltage lines
The High Voltage Safety Act requires that you call the UPC at least 72 hours before beginning work within 10 feet of overhead high-voltage (750-volt) lines. The three-day notification allows time to ensure safety precautions are in place. If you're not sure whether the line in question is a high-voltage line, call the UPC.
About the Utilities Protection Center
The UPC is a non-profit organization composed of more than 300 member utility companies throughout the state. For more information, see the UPC website.
Do I Really Need to Call?
YES! Don’t make a judgment call; make a phone call to 811. Homeowners often make risky assumptions about whether or not they should get their utility lines marked, but every digging job requires a call - even "small" projects like planting trees and shrubs.
I am only planting a small flower bed or bush...
Did you know that many utilities are buried just a few inches below ground? You can easily hit a line when digging for simple gardening projects, like planting flowers or small shrubs. Make the call to 811 anytime you’re putting a shovel in the ground to keep yourself and your community safe.
I am just installing a mailbox...
Buried utility lines are everywhere! Installing mailboxes and fences are examples of projects that absolutely require a call to 811 to know what’s below before digging. Hitting a line can knock out service to your home and neighborhood or result in fines, damage and serious injury. Don’t make a judgment call – make the call to 811 every time you dig.
I am digging in a spot that was previously marked...
Erosion and root system growth can alter the depth or location of buried lines, or your utility companies may have completed work on their lines since the last time you dug – so you must call 811 before you dig, each and every time.
I have hired a contractor or landscaper to do the digging project...
Be sure to check with your contractor or landscaper to make sure that the call to 811 will be made before digging begins – whether it means you making the call, or your contractor doing so. Never let digging work begin without the call to 811! It’s not worth the risk.
I am only digging in a small area and don't want my entire yard marked...
If you are only planning to dig in a small portion of your yard, you can outline the area in white paint or white flags available at home improvement stores to ensure that only the utilities in that part of your yard will be located and marked. Be sure to let your 811 operator know about your plans, and he or she will help ensure the proper area is marked by utility locators.