Call before you dig

Dial 811 for free utility pipeline location

When you dig on your property for any reason, it's important to have the locations of underground utilities verified and clearly marked. Striking a natural gas or electric line may result in service disruptions, bodily harm, fines and/or repair costs.

Dial 811 at least two full business days (not including the day you call) before you plan to dig, no matter the size of your project. It's not only smart, it's the law.

If you prefer to submit a utility location request online, visit the Dig Safe WA.

How it works

Before you call 811, you should outline your dig area with white spray paint.

When you call, an operator will record information about your dig and notify affected utility companies, including PSE. We will dispatch a technician to mark the location of our electric and gas lines with paint and/or flags.

The law says you must call, even if you are a homeowner.

PSE locates and marks its own lines for free, but privately owned utility lines must be located by a separate vendor, typically for a fee. To better understand which utility pipelines belong to you, visit this interactive guide. You’ll find a list of private utility locating companies here.

When you dig

Mark the dig area with white paint or stakes so the locator knows where to search for utlities. Once the utilities have been marked, don't move the colored flags or alter the painted marks until construction is finished. Use only hand tools when digging within two feet of the marked lines. Support exposed gas pipelines with secure nylon straps, wood shoring, and ropes so they don't break. Use sand or rock-free dirt as backfill. Never build decks or other structures over pipelines or meters. Doing so runs a safety risk and prevents us from servicing the equipment.

For easy identification, underground utilities are marked using the following color code:

Color Utility Type
Red Electric
Orange Telephone/CATV
Yellow Gas/Oil
Green Sewer
Blue Water
Purple Reclaimed water (not potable)
Pink Survey
White Proposed Excavation

Pipeline marker facts

Pipeline markers are used to indicate the presence of high-profile natural gas pipelines and are typically situated along highways and intersections between major roads and railways. These markers display the name and emergency contact information of the pipeline operator.

Pipeline markers and warning signs only indicate the presence of a pipeline and should not be used to determine its exact location.


Help for professional excavators

PSE’s team of damage prevention representatives is available to help professional excavators dig safely. They can assist with locate issues, dig law questions, and training. See this map for the name and phone number of the representative in your area.

Pipeline markers