Call Before You Dig
It's safe. It's free. It's the law.
For your safety, you are required by law to call at least two working days before you plan to dig so your underground utility lines can be marked.
Always call 811 before you dig.
Homeowners and contractors must call 811 before undertaking any excavation or digging projects.
Prior to calling 811, mark the proposed excavation area with stakes, flags, posts, or painted or chalked lines that are white in color and are clearly visible.
Call at least two working days before you need to start excavations or digging. Be prepared to give the type of excavation being performed and the specific location of the proposed excavation.
The 811 service will connect you with the state one-call center, which will alert participating utility companies such as electric, gas, cable and phone about the planned digging so they can mark the appropriate location of their underground lines, if necessary.
Remember, you are responsible for marking your private lines such as invisible pet fences, sprinkler systems, yard lights and gas grill lines.
Local utilities will then come to your home or work site and mark the location of their underground lines using the following color codes:
-Temporary Survey Markings
- Electric Power Lines, Cables, Conduit and Lighting Cables
- Gas, Oil, Steam, Petroleum or Gaseous Materials
- Communications, Alarm or Signal Lines, Cables or Conduit
- Water, Irrigation and Slurry Lines
- Reclaimed water, irrigation and Slurry Lines
- Sewers and Drain Lines
Check the area before proceeding with your project. If a member utility has not responded or if underground facilities are clearly present and not located, call your state one call center again to have the area located properly.
Now, you are officially ready to dig!
When digging, make sure to always dig around the marks, not on them. Some utility lines may be buried at a shallow depth, and an unintended shovel thrust could result in dangerous and/or costly consequences.
Don't forget that time, erosion or root structure growth may shift the locations of your utility lines, so remember to call again, each time you are planning a digging job. Safe digging is no accident. Know what's below. Always call before you dig.
Understanding the marks: CenterPoint Energy follows the recommended guidelines for uniform temporary markings as approved by the National Common Ground Alliance. All our gas facilities are marked with yellow paint and flags (where appropriate) and all mains 2 inches or larger are marked with our company initials, size of pipe and type of pipe material.