Lincoln, NE – August 6, 2018 – It was time for Joe to replace a few fence posts on his family’s farm. Those posts were likely older than him. Meanwhile, at a house in town, Karen was making plans to replace her once beautiful hydrangea the deer had nibbled down.
Both Joe and Karen knew about 811, the free service that arranges for professionals to mark the location of underground utility lines. But neither called.
In the farmer’s mind he was only replacing the post, not digging a new hole. And Karen just didn’t see how planting a shrub would require all that to-do.
But Joe didn’t know a gas line had been installed after the original fence post had been dug. As for Karen, her hydrangea hole was nearly two feet deep—just at the depth of her natural gas service line.
Fortunately, Joe and Karen were lucky. They missed hitting the line, which could have resulted in fines and interrupted service to others. Most importantly, no one was hurt.
Many others are not as fortunate. Every six minutes, an underground utility line is damaged because someone didn’t call 811. A hit line carries the potential for serious injury and expensive property damage.
That’s why Black Hills Energy is participating in National Safe Digging Day on Aug. 11 — or 8-1-1. As a thank you to contractors and customers across the state Nebraska 811 partner agencies will be delivering coolers full of refreshing treats to crews across the state. In addition, customers will have a chance to win a YETI cooler in an online Facebook challenge. Like the Black Hills Energy Facebook page to learn how you can enter.
No matter what the date, the law requires that you call 811 to have underground utility lines marked before you break ground. That’s true whether you’re a homeowner setting a fencepost or a contractor conducting a large excavation. You can also enter your request at www.nebraska1call.com.
“Safety is always our first priority at Black Hills Energy, and we want to help our customers stay safe,” said Jeff Sylvester, vice president of Nebraska operations for Black Hills Energy. “When you’re planning to dig, don’t make a judgment call, make a phone call; call 811 two to five business days before you plan to dig.”
Visit www.blackhillsenergy.com for more information about 811 and safe digging practices.
And call 811 before you dig: It’s free, it’s safe and it’s the law.
Black Hills Energy
Black Hills Energy is a natural gas and electric utility serving 1.2 million customers in eight states: Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. Black Hills Energy is part of Black Hills Corp. (NYSE: BKH), a growth-oriented, vertically integrated energy company based in Rapid City, South Dakota, with a tradition of improving life with energy and a vision to be the energy partner of choice. Black Hills Corp. also generates wholesale electricity and produces natural gas, oil and coal. More information is available at www.blackhillscorp.com and www.blackhillsenergy.com.