5:32pm

Thu August 11, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

Appropriate and Safe Digging

Deep digging in backyards across Kentucky continues to cause problems for utility companies.    Today is designated as Kentucky 8-1-1 Underground Facility Protection Day.  State public service commission spokesman,  Andrew Melnykovych says ‘cutting buried utility lines’ is still a problem on a daily basis.  He says losing ‘land line’ telephone access can present health and safety issues

“But , if you’re in an area where, for example, there is no cell phone service, and there are plenty of those in Kentucky where the cell phone service is limited or not very consistent, that land line is really your only link to emergency assistance,” said Melnykovych

.Kentucky Public Service Commission Chair, David Armstrong says a cut telephone cable left 500 Kentucky County customers without service in June.   Armstrong says some were without phone lines for almost a week.

Melnykovych says, occasionally, it’s hard to track down old underground utilities.

“Some of it frankly is, people call, the lines aren’t located accurately because there is a lot of old infrastructure there that’s not been mapped properly so you’ll wind up digging somewhere thinking there’s no line there and hitting a line, which really isn’t the fault of the person digging if they have called ahead of time,” said Melnykovych.

Melnykovych says,  more often than not, disruptions occur when calls are not made before taking the shovel to the earth.  Melnykovych says 8-1-1 can be dialed any day to request the marking of buried utility lines.