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The Importance of Colors of Underground Utility Lines

If you find underground utilities, you can easily determine what type of utility it is for. 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. People can call 811 to prevent these incidents, before they proceed with digging their property. Calling the 811 number will enable utility companies to come out and mark their respective utility lines.

Marking lines may lessen the risks but there are time when 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. Public heath and safety is affected when this happens.

GPR or Ground Penetrating Radar is used by companies to locate their utility lines. When locating utility lines underground, this machine makes it easy to do so. Calling 811 is enough for the property owner to let companies located their lines.

There are certain colors that mark different utility lines for easy identification. Here are the colors used for different utilities.

Proposed excavation sites use white lines. It locates areas that will be excavated in the near future.

Pink lines are temporary survey markings. Surveyors use pink lines to mark off legal property boundaries.

If you see red lines, then you can be sure that these are electric power lines, cable, conduit, and lighting cables. This color is appropriate for electrical works since it is associated with fire and danger.

Lines for gas, oil, steam, petroleum, and gaseous materials use the color yellow. The bright color yellow is used to be a warning sign since a natural gas leak can create a potentially disastrous situation.

Communication, alarm, signal lines, cable, or conduit use orange lines. Lines for potable water use blue lines. Purple lines are used for reclaimed water, irrigation, and slurry lines. If you see the color green, then it indicates sewer and drain lines. You can derail any project for a long time if you hit these lines.

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