Locating Underground Lines
- Premark your dig area. Pre-mark the specific area of excavation using white paint, flags or stakes. The other option is to provide an electronic outline of the specific area of excavation when requesting the ticket through South Dakota 811.
- 811 Before You Dig. Call 8-1-1, or visit South Dakota 811 at least three business days before you dig. South Dakota 811 will notify affected utility owners of your intent to dig. Be sure to provide access to the property, ensuring gates are unlocked and pets are secured until the locates have been completed. If there is a problem with access, a meet request may be processed to ensure accessibility.
- Wait for locates. Utility owners have two full business days, not including the day of the request, to respond to your request for locates. Professional locators will respond within that time to mark the location of underground utilities in your dig area with flags, paint or both.
- Dig carefully. Always dig with care. Utility lines are within 18 inches on either side of the marked utility and remember the marks to not indicate depth. Carefully hand dig with non-mechanized equipment around the marked areas and consider designing your project to avoid digging close to underground utilities.
- Respect and protect the marks. Your locate ticket is valid for 30 days or as long as marks are visible within that 30 period. You must request a refresh of your marks if your locate ticket has expired, or if your marks have been destroyed.
It is important to remember that 811 locators do not locate privately installed facilities. If you have any private utilities, you will need to hire a private utility locator. Some examples of private utilities include: underground sprinkler system, invisible fences, private water systems, or gas piping or electrical wiring to a garage.