Dominion Energy asks neighbors to help keep communities safe


CLARKSBURG — As our nation’s hospitals, healthcare providers and first responders work tirelessly to treat those impacted by coronavirus, it is more important than ever that communities observe safe digging practices and avoid any additional strain on our emergency-response systems.

With more Americans working from home, some may consider catching up on projects around the house. Dominion Energy reminds all our customers that if any projects require digging, they must call 811 at least two business days before shovels hit the soil to avoid encountering underground utilities.

“National Safe Digging Month has taken on a heightened sense of urgency this year,” said Jonell Carver, Dominion Energy West Virginia’s director gas operations. “It is more critical than ever before that we all do our part to keep our communities safe and avoid placing any additional burdens on our first responders. We urge everyone in the community to please put the safety of your family, neighbors and community first, and call 811 before you dig.”  

Every day, our employees take ownership of workplace safety and promote this behavior in the communities we serve. In West Virginia, DEWV has set the expectation that all excavating contractors must be certified through the Gold Shovel Association by January 2021. DEWV also holds annual meetings with first responders and contractors in our service territories to emphasize the importance of communication while sharing best safety practices.

Dominion Energy reminds residents, if you plan to dig on your property, follow these important steps: 

  1. Call before you dig. State law requires that before digging, you call WV811 by dialing 811, using the WV811 app or visiting WV811.com to request to have your lines located at least two full working days before beginning any excavation work. 
  1. Wait. At no cost to you, technicians will mark the location of the utility lines on your property while practicing safe social distancing and wearing appropriate personal protective equipment. Once all lines are marked, you will be notified and can safely begin your digging project. 
  2. Respect the markings for your safety. Dig at least two feet on all sides of the marks, not on them, preferably using a rounded or blunt-edged tool near the utility markers.
  3. Dig with care. If you accidentally hit a Dominion Energy utility line, no matter how minor it may seem, leave the area. From a safe place, call 911 and Dominion Energy at 1-800-688-4673. 

With our natural gas utility lines, safe digging also stops methane from being released into the atmosphere when a pipeline is damaged. Over the past 20 years, third-party damage has been the primary cause of incidents to natural gas infrastructure. Dominion Energy conducts public awareness programs to educate landowners near company facilities, to reduce the likelihood of dig-ins or other harm that can cause a release of methane into the atmosphere.  

Visit wv811.org and dominionenergy.com/safety for more information about 811 and the call-before-you-dig process.

About Dominion Energy
More than 7 million customers in 20 states energize their homes and businesses with electricity or natural gas from Dominion Energy (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond, Va. The company is committed to sustainable, reliable, affordable and safe energy and is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy with more than $100 billion of assets providing electric generation, transmission and distribution, as well as natural gas storage, transmission, distribution and import/export services. The company is committed to achieving net zero carbon dioxide and methane emissions from its power generation and gas infrastructure operations by 2050. Please visit DominionEnergy.com to learn more.

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