Standard Colors for Your Underground Utilities

Underground utilities can easily be identified today. 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. If there is a need to dig the ground, it is very important that the utility lines first be identified. If you need to dig through a piece of land today, you are required by the OSHA to first identify or locate underground utilities. Otherwise it can be something disastrous. The worst thing that can happen if lines are not identified is that fatal injuries can happen. 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. When the number is called, you can let the utility companies come out and mark their respective lines.

Marking lines may lessen the risks but there are time when accidents still happen. The reality is that there is an incident almost every 6 minutes where utility line are struck. When this happens, it affects traffic lights, wastewater pipes, telecommunication lines and more. These incidents affect public health and safety.

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. Companies can locate their utility lines if any property owner calls 811.

Today, utility lines are marked with different colors for easy identification. The colors below indicate the kind of utility uses it.

White lines are for proposed excavation sites. Area that will be excavated in the future are marked.

Temporary survey markings use pink lines. Surveyors use pink lines to mark off legal property boundaries.

Red lines are used to mark electric power lines, cable, conduit, and lighting cable. The color red is associated with fire and danger so it is just appropriate to use it for electrical works.

If you see yellow lines, then they are lines for gas, oil, steam, petroleum, and gaseous materials. The bright color yellow is used to be a warning sign since a natural gas leak can create a potentially disastrous situation.

Orange lines are used for communication, alarm, signal lines, cable or conduit. Lines for potable water use blue lines. Purple lines are used for reclaimed water, irrigation, and slurry lines. Sewer and drain lines use the color green. You can derail any project for a long time if you hit these lines.

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