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5 steps to safe digging

Dig Safe campaign reminds workers to 'call before you dig'

The Ontario Regional Common Ground Alliance (ORCGA) and its members have designated April as Dig Safe Month in Ontario.

Upon spring’s arrival, the ground thaws out, which is the time when many workers begin outdoor projects involving digging, and the risk of injury increases.

“Safety for the public and employees is our number 1 priority,” said Max Cananzi, president, Alectra Utilities in Hamilton. “The launching of ORGCA's Dig Safe Month campaign at the beginning of April is a yearly reminder to be mindful of the electrical and natural gas infrastructure that resides underground.”

Damaging underground services can have serious consequences, such as personal injury, loss of essential services, expensive restoration costs and potential legal action. 

Workers should follow these steps before starting any outdoor project that involves digging:

•at least five working days prior to digging, schedule the required locate by calling Ontario One Call (1-800-400-2255) or submitting an online request on the Ontario One Call website

•wait for a utilities cable locator and representatives from gas and telecommunication companies to arrive to mark the area

•respect the marks

•avoid digging within 1 metre of marked ground

•dig with care.

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