Any time you plan to dig on your own residential or commercial property, the first step should be to discover utility lines. The help of a private utility locating service should be used for both small and large dig operations, whether you’re excavating on private or public land.
These services are extremely useful for detecting and avoiding public underground utilities. It is more common than you might imagine coming upon underground utilities while excavating or doing other excavation work.
So, we’ll go over all you need to know about utility locating, when it should be done, and why it’s such an important initial step for every business owner in the section below.
Private Utility Locating: What You Need to Know?
Is it time to call your private utility locator? We understand that you don’t always want to call if you don’t have to. However, if you’re digging on a commercial site, you’ll almost certainly come across hidden private utilities.
Any utility that extends beyond the meter is typically referred to as a private utility. Warehouses, office parks, universities, hospitals, retail projects, and industrial sites are examples of situations where a private location is required.
Commercial sites, such as apartment complexes or other areas with restricted access, may also be included.
A trained utility locator will visit your site when a site visit has been booked to determine if a full locate is achievable based on site conditions. If the conditions are suitable, a ground-penetrating radar will be utilized to scan the ground surface and detect the location of an object.
This information is then marked or mapped to produce a clear picture of regions to avoid when excavating or doing other invasive groundwork.
Calling Private Utility Locating Services: Call Before You Dig
“Call before you dig” is a phrase you’ve probably heard. This campaign has been launched around the country to educate people about the significance of detecting subsurface utilities before excavating.
Whether you’re building a pool, putting up a fence, or landscaping, make sure the area is clear of utility lines.
From any state, you or the company you’ve engaged to execute the work should dial 811.
Before excavating on any business or residential property, including your own. Technicians will be dispatched to the site to use electromagnetic equipment to locate potholing utilities.
Then any that run from the street to the service meter are marked. This will assist households and professionals in avoiding damage to water, sewage, power, and natural gas lines.
Do You Need Private Utility Locating Services?
You’ll almost certainly need to do a second call before beginning your excavation endeavor. Private utility locating services may be required to locate and demarcate underground electrical wires, gas pipes, and other utilities on private, residential, commercial, and municipal property.
The wires that run beyond the service meter are known as private utilities. Electrical lines running from the meter to a house or building, for example, would be considered private.
Even on your own land, it’s critical to have these boundaries clearly and properly designated before beginning to dig for safety and liability concerns. You’ll need to hire a private underground utility locator to have these identified.
Utility maps are frequently missing, obsolete, erroneous, or incomplete, therefore private locator personnel do not rely on them.
Instead, they use a variety of specialized technologies to conduct a thorough analysis of the area. Electromagnetic equipment, ground penetrating radar (GPR), and electronic or radio frequency (RF) pipe and cable locating instruments are just a few examples.
Finally, a private locator may create comprehensive, high-quality utility maps of active and abandoned lines.
What Happens When Potholing Utilities are Hit?
Excavation work that is carried out without calling a private utility locating service is a hazardous operation.
When buried utilities are impacted, workers can easily be wounded or killed, making the location of subterranean utilities a safety issue first and foremost. Damage to the utility and the equipment in use is a possibility.
Repairs of underground utilities can be costly and time-consuming due to their nature. These frequently necessitate the excavation of the full length of pipe, cable, or conduit, which comes with significant fines and downtime.
Damage to nearby networks can result in difficulties like internet outages or flooding in the vicinity. When a buried utility is destroyed, the contractor is responsible for repairing it as soon as possible. Not to mention these actions can be costly and time-consuming.
Public Utilities Vs. Private Utilities
Public utility services install public utilities to give service to a specific area. Regardless of whether they are on public or private land, the public utility provider owns and maintains these lines. Gas, power, and electricity are examples of public utilities.
Private utilities are those that extend beyond service meters or public utilities and, in many cases, onto privately owned land. Electrical feeders and gas mains running across parking lots or to important institutions such as hospitals or fire stations are examples of private utilities.
Lines running to and from substations, major industrial complexes, and refineries are examples. Because these utilities would be owned and maintained by the property owner, they would be outside the jurisdiction of utility locating firms.
What are the Different Private Utility Lines?
Most homes have unmarked private utility wires, which pose a serious risk to anyone excavating.
It’s critical that all lines are identified and marked. These are just a few of the subterranean utilities that could be present on your property.
- Electricity for exterior lighting
- Septic pipes
- Sprinkler systems
- Invisible fencing
- Gas lines for heated pools
- Gas lines to fire pits or grills
- Power for a detached garage
- Storm drains
- Satellite dish lines
Call a Reliable Private Utility Locator
Using a private utility finder to avoid hitting concealed utilities is an excellent technique to avoid hitting them. Electric, gas, oil, steam, communications, water, sewer, and storm lines may all be found by private utility locators like us.
We are experts at identifying buried materials, removing the guesswork from your excavation. Don’t take the risk of hitting buried utilities, contact us at Util-Locate today!