Underground utilities can easily be identified today. The risk was high before when people could not easily identify the type of utility lines underneath whenever they dig. Today, the risks have been lessened although not completely eliminated. It is thus important that we know how to identify these underground utilities if there is a need to dig the ground so that you can prevent harm. The OSHA requires that utilities underground first be located before digging through a piece of land. Otherwise it can be something disastrous. If you hit any of the underground utility lines while digging then you can be fatally injured. It can also interrupt services in your area where the line is located. Before digging their property, people should call 811 to call the utility companies so that these incidents are prevented. When the number is called, you can let the utility companies come out and mark their respective lines.
Sometimes, even if the lines are marked accidents still happen. It is said that every 6 minutes, there is a utility line that is struck. Traffic lights, wastewater pipes, telecommunication lines, etc. are affected when lines are struck. These incidents affect public health and safety.
With the use of GPR or Ground Penetrating Radar, companies can locate utility lines. When locating utility lines underground, this machine makes it easy to do so. However, for the ordinary homeowner, it is enough to simply call 811 to be able to let companies located their lines.
Today, utility lines are marked with different colors for easy identification. The colors below indicate the kind of utility uses it.
If you see white lines, then these are proposed excavation sites. Area that will be excavated in the future are marked.
If you see pink lines, they are temporary survey markings. Legal property boundaries are marked off by these pink lines.
Electric power lines, cable, conduit, and lighting cable use red lines. This color is appropriate for electrical works since it is associated with fire and danger.
Yellow lines are used for gas, oil, steam, petroleum, and gaseous materials. Natural gas leaks can create potentially disastrous situations and this is why it is appropriate to use the bright yellow color.
Orange lines are used for communication, alarm, signal lines, cable or conduit. Blue lines are used for potable water. Reclaimed water, irrigation, and slurry lines used purple lines. Sewer and drain lines use the color green. Hitting this line can truly derail any project for a long period of time.