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Do you own drain tile, irrigation lines, buried power or any other buried services that enter the public right of way? Did you know that it is a legal requirement to register those buried facilities with South Dakota One Call? Are you aware of how low the cost is to protect your investment?
Registration is easy. Simply click on become a member or email MemberServices@sd811.com to begin the discussion about becoming a member of South Dakota One Call. Once you are a member you will be notified each time someone calls the South Dakota 811 Center about working near your buried lines. This will give you a chance to mark and protect those facilities to avoid damage by excavators working in the area. There is a one-time $35 sign-up fee, no matter how many lines you have or how much property you own. You will be charged only about $1 each time you’re notified by email that someone plans to dig near your property.
Planning to plant trees, install drain tile or culverts, loosen subsoil, or disturb the ground in any other way? Call 811 at least two working days before the planned work, or sooner if planning to work on a weekend or legal holiday, even on your own property. It’s a free service to you, and it’s the law. Tilling soil for agricultural purposes to a depth of 18 inches is an exception to this requirement. Still, even with this exception, it’s a good idea to make the call, especially if you’re not sure what buried facilities are in the area or if you’re working new ground for the first time. If you think you know where a telephone cable, rural water line or pipeline is buried, call 811 anyway. Many of these services have been damaged by individuals who thought they knew where the line was buried, but were wrong. If you hire someone to do the work, a representative of that company must make the call. Depth of buried lines can vary greatly and in some cases may be very shallow due to erosion or previous dirt work. Hitting a buried gas line or electrical line can be deadly, so make the call and be safe.
Some underground lines on your property may not be owned by the utility and may not be located by them, such as lines that run from the meter to the house or lines between buildings. These types of services can include water, electrical, communications, gas, etc.. These are considered “privately owned” facilities, in which case the utility has no record of the buried lines, and consequently they are not registered with the South Dakota 811 Center. In these cases the utility may agree to locate them at your request for a fee, or you may have to hire an electrician or other independent locating company to mark those lines.
If you nick or damage a buried service line, contact the affected service company right away. If you don’t know who owns the service call 811. Do not attempt to repair it yourself. Doing so and covering it up is against the law and may subject you to legal penalties in addition to repair costs down the road. Not repairing it correctly is a sure way to experience service problems later.
In the case of a ruptured gas line or pipeline, immediately call 911 first, then call the company or call 811. Wait for emergency personnel to arrive before entering any building on the property. Have everyone leave the building and DO NOT turn any light switch on or off. In the case of a damaged electrical line, leave it alone, keep everyone away from the area, and call the power company or an electrician to repair it.
Guidelines for Homeowners, Ranchers and Farmers Brochure will help answer frequently asked questions about when to contact the South Dakota 811 Center, how the system works, and the processes that need to be followed after making the call.
BE SAFE! Always remember to call 811, so you won’t need to call 911.