Businesses that don’t call 811 before they dig could face big fines

By Tom Knox

Companies that damage underground lines could face penalties up to $10,000 under an updated Ohio law.

This year the Ohio legislature updated a 1990 law on underground damage prevention. Starting Jan. 1, the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio will enforce the law with the new Underground Technical Committee, which has the authority to levy fines up to $10,000 for repeat offenders.

The committee’s goal is “to increase public safety by ensuring that anyone excavating or operating underground facilities follows safe digging practices.”

Excavators and other businesses that dig underground are urged to call 811 two days before digging.

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