Work safely around our utilities
Your safety is important to us
We work hard to deliver safe, reliable electric and natural gas service to our customers, and we want you to be safe while working near our above- or below-ground facilities. We construct, operate, maintain and inspect our natural gas system in accordance with state and federal pipeline safety regulations. If a potential problem is discovered, our crews respond and resolve the problem, following current industry standards and best practices.
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Excavation rules to work safely near electric and natural gas lines
Follow two simple rules to help avoid potentially dangerous situations and expensive mistakes:
(In addition to following proper excavating practices)
1. Look up and look out
Whether you operate heavy equipment or use ladders and hand-held tools outdoors, you are working near power lines. Remember to always look up and look out. Assume all overhead lines are energized and dangerous – including the service drops that run from utility poles to buildings.
Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) law requires that you work at least 20 feet from any overhead electric line unless requirements of OSHA regulations CFR1926.1408 are met. If you must work closer than 10 feet, contact us in advance obefore working so we can make safety arrangements.
2. Call or “click” before you dig
To prevent a hazardous situation while digging, contact Diggers Hotline at 811 or 800-242-8511 at least three business days before you plan to dig.
Representatives will mark utility-owned underground facilities for free within three working days. Locate requests for emergency purposes will be expedited. We may not be the only pipeline operator in an area. To find out which pipeline operators have transmission facilities in an area, visit the National Pipeline Mapping System website.
National Pipeline Mapping System
Natural gas will not burn by itself. However, if mixed with the right amount of air, natural gas can ignite. Natural gas is nontoxic, but in an enclosed area, it may displace oxygen in the air, which can lead to suffocation.
Contact us immediately at 800-261-5325 are working near a pipeline and:
- Smell strong odor of natural gas (similar to rotten eggs)
- Hear hissing, whistling or roaring sound
- See dirt or debris blowing into the air
Learn what to do for the following facility safety situations.
Natural gas pipeline safety
Natural gas its underground pipeline distribution system have outstanding safety records. Distribution systems are surveyed regularly, and problems rarely occur. To perform mandated pipeline safety inspections, we must have clear access to the pipeline right of way. Areas on either side of the pipeline must be kept clear of debris, trees, sheds and other structures.