OKIE811 One Call Law Changes

Underground facility operators in Oklahoma are continuously looking to improve the Oklahoma Underground Damage Prevention Act to ensure the safety of those digging around their underground lines and to help mitigate damages when possible. The most recent changes that went into effect November 1, 2021, help further this mission.

Here is an outline of the changes taking place:

Life of a Ticket is 14 Calendar Days. Ticket Start Time changed from 7:00 am to 12:00 am.

Positive Response is now mandatory for all stakeholders

– An excavator must check for positive response at the notification center prior to excavating or demolishing to ensure that all operators have responded.

– Each operator shall provide a positive response. This response shall indicate the status of the required activities of the operator.

Provisions for State of Emergency Declaration

– During any state of emergency that impacts the area of excavation or demolition, the time limitations on tickets is not applicable.

Damage Reporting to OKIE811

– In addition to reporting damages to the Underground Facility Operator, the caller must also report the damage to OKIE811.

Excavator Responsibilities around Hazardous Pipelines

– When an excavator has actual knowledge that an operator has unmarked hydrocarbon and hazardous liquid underground facilities within the area of proposed excavation, the excavator shall not commence excavation or demolition until notice has been given and such facilities have been marked. The excavator shall maintain and preserve all hydrocarbon and hazardous liquid markings for the duration of the excavation or demolition and shall notify the notification center if such marks are no longer visible or are removed and underground facilities have not been exposed.

Excessive requests with no excavation and fraudulent emergency requests

– If excessive and unreasonable requests for marking are made by an excavator when no excavation is taking place within fourteen (14) calendar days, the excavator may be liable to the owner or operator for the reasonable cost of such marking.

– If requests for emergency locates are made by an excavator when there is no emergency, the excavator may be liable to the owner or operator for the reasonable cost of emergency response

These changes are intended to help strengthen the One Call law and further cooperation between underground facility operators and excavators doing business in Oklahoma. OKIE811 is proud to be a stakeholder in promoting safety and helping prevent damages and interruptions to vital services provided by operators in Oklahoma.

For more information and details on these changes, go to legiscan.com/OK/bill/ HB2028/2021. For Operator Education Video, see youtube.com/watch?v=PbdnTJLuQOI. For Excavator Education, please visit our website – okie811.org/excavatoreducation.

Susan Bohl is Executive Director of OKIE811. She can be reached at sbohl@okie811.org.

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