Information about excavation safety

When starting a project that requires digging, remember to call 811 before you get started.

South Carolina State Law

The South Carolina STATE LAW requires notice for any excavation or demolition that does not involve a subaqueous facility must be given within three to twelve full working days (“Working Day” means every day, except Saturday, Sunday, and legal holidays as defined by South Carolina law) before the proposed commencement date of the excavation or demolition. Notice for any excavation or demolition in the vicinity of a subaqueous facility must be made within ten to twenty full working days before the proposed commencement date of the excavation or demolition. Any utilities that P.U.P.S. (SC811) does not notify, you will be responsible for notifying directly. Also note that your request to perform excavation or demolition shall expire within 15 working days after the date of notice. No excavation or demolition may continue after this fifteen day period unless the person responsible for the excavation or demolition provides a subsequent notice for excavation or demolition.

  1. Your notice to perform excavation or demolition will require the following information:
  2. The name, address, and telephone number of the person providing the notice;
  3. The anticipated start date of the proposed excavation or demolition;
  4. The anticipated duration of the proposed excavation or demolition;
  5. The type of proposed excavation or demolition to be conducted;
  6. The location of the proposed excavation or demolition, not to exceed one-quarter mile in geographical length, or five adjoining addresses; and
  7. Whether or not explosives are to be used in the proposed excavation or demolition.

When demolition of a building is proposed, utility operators shall be given reasonable time to remove or protect their facilities before demolition is commenced. No mechanical means of excavation shall be used within the tolerance zone (24 inches either side of the utility marks). The work within the tolerance zone shall be performed by non-mechanized means such as hand tools.

Contact

811 is a nationwide one call number that is utilized by P.U.P.S. in the state of South Carolina. Their operating hours are 8:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Color Codes used for locating utility lines:

  • RED – Electric Power Lines, Cables, Conduit and Lightning Cables
  • YELLOW – Gas, Oil, Steam, Petroleum, or Gaseous Materials
  • ORANGE – Communication, Alarm, or Signal Lines, Cables or Conduit
  • BLUE – Water, Irrigation, and Slurry Lines
  • GREEN – Sewers and Drain Lines
  • PINK – Temporary Survey Markings
  • WHITE – Proposed Excavations

Tips for safe excavation

  • If a neighbor is planning an excavation project, remind them to call 811 before they break ground.
  • Hand dig within 24 inches of both sides of the locate marks before using excavation equipment.

For more information about 811, visit the national 811 website.

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