DOVER, DE – With August 11 quickly approaching, Chesapeake Utilities Corporation (NYSE: CPK) wants this date on the calendar, 8/11, to serve as a reminder to its natural gas, propane and electric customers as well as all contractors to call 811 to have utility-owned underground lines marked prior to digging. A survey conducted earlier this year by the Common Ground Alliance, the national association that promotes the 811 phone number and safe digging practices, projected that 42 percent of homeowners who planned to dig this year for various projects, were likely to put themselves and their communities at risk by not calling 811 prior to digging.
Digging underground without locating underground natural gas and/or propane pipe, electric lines or other service lines can cause serious injury, damages and service interruptions. Every digging project warrants a call to 811. Whether installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree or laying a patio, a call to 811 should be the first step in planning the project. In addition to underground line safety, the public should also be aware of potential shock hazards associated with electrical distribution equipment. It is important to follow safety signs, keep away from electrical transmission and distribution power lines, look up when working near lines, and call 811 before digging.
Chesapeake Utilities, including its subsidiaries, manages more than 5,300 miles of gas pipeline and distribution mains, many of which may cross through residential properties. Properly locating these lines is essential to safely completing a digging job. In addition to Chesapeake Utilities’ lines, there are underground communications cables, water and sewer lines and other utilities. Even properties without a particular utility service may still have lines running below ground. Chesapeake Utilities also encourages plumbers and excavators who use mechanical equipment to clear sewer blockages to make an emergency locate request as sewer laterals are not always marked.
One free call to 811 informs Miss Utility in Maryland and Delaware, Sunshine811 in Florida and Ohio811 in Ohio, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of the intent to dig. Professional locators are then sent to the requested digging site to mark the locations of underground lines with flags, stakes and/or spray paint. Once lines are located, customers and excavators must understand the markings and look for evidence of unmarked lines, such as water and sewer lines on private property. Sewer clean-outs and water valve covers are examples of equipment that can indicate the presence of underground lines.
Residents and contractors should call 811 at least three days in advance of starting a project.
About Chesapeake Utilities Corporation
Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is a diversified energy company engaged in natural gas distribution and transmission; electricity generation and distribution; propane gas distribution; and other businesses. Information about Chesapeake Utilities Corporation’s businesses is available at www.chpk.com, through the Company’s Investor Relations App and on the Annual Report Microsite at cpkannualreport.com.
Please note that Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is not affiliated with Chesapeake Energy, an oil and natural gas exploration company headquartered in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
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