Call Before You Dig: SC811 Membership is Mandatory for Municipalities

​South Carolina 811 serves as the state's not-for-profit resource for having buried utility lines marked ahead of digging projects. Since 2015, state law requires all municipalities or other utility operators that install or maintain buried lines to join SC811 and use its notification center.

When SC811 receives requests to locate utility lines, which are required for every digging project and generally must be made three full business days before digging, it notifies the relevant utility operators from among its members. The operators are then responsible for marking the lines they maintain — electrical, gas, water, sewer or communications — and notify SC811 that lines are marked. This helps prevent utility damage, safety hazards and service interruptions. Nationwide, damages from underground excavations create costs of at least $1.5 billion every year, according to the US Infrastructure Company.

People submitting location requests can do so by calling 811, but the service also has an online request portal on its website and through its mobile app. The website and app also allow excavators who have damaged utilities to report the damage, which is also required by state law.

Learn more about the SC Underground Facility Damage Prevention Action Act, which creates requirements relating to SC811, including the requirement that all municipalities with utility lines participate.