ONG is Promoting April as National Safe Digging Month With $100 Gift Card OpportunityThu, 08 Apr 2021 11:35:36 CDT
April is National Safe Digging Month and Cherokee Ballard, public relations manager at Oklahoma Natural Gas, is encouraging everyone to “call before you dig.”
ONG is promoting awareness about safe digging practices by offering customers a chance to win a $100 gift card if they take an interactive quiz.
Ballard talked about the promotion during an interview with Radio Oklahoma Agriculture Network Associate Farm Director and Editor KC Sheperd.
We try to push the “Call before you dig” year around but it is especially important this spring, Ballard said.
“Right now, so many Oklahomans are assessing landscaping after the ice storm in October and the snowstorm in February and are ready to start replacing damaged shrubs and trees,” Ballard said.
We are encouraging people to make this free call, simply dial 811, she said.
Before you do any digging, yourself or by a contractor, make that phone call, she said.
“It just takes one wrong swing of a shovel or a scoop from a backhoe to create an outage issue for an entire neighborhood – so before you start digging for new shrubs and trees make a quick call to 811 to prevent damage.”
There could be electrical, internet, gas lines, anything can be damaged.
It happens and people just don’t realize it, she said.
When you call, they will come out within 48 hours, she said.
Once you get your lines marked, don’t dig within 24 inches on either side of where that line is marked to ensure you won’t cause any damage, she said.
This area is called the tolerance zone, Ballard said.
By making the free call to 811 or visiting Okie811.org before digging, professional locators will mark all underground utility lines within the designated project area with flags and/or paint at no cost to the home or business owner.
In 2020, 24% of the pipeline damages on our system were from people not calling 811, Ballard said.
“Knowing how to dig safely helps avoid injury and protects the neighborhood because underground utility lines may be found below yards, sidewalks, driveways or streets,” Ballard said.
The online process can be accessed by clicking here.
To have a chance at the $100 gift card, click here.
To hear more of KC’s interview with Cherokee Ballard, click on the listen bar below.
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