It was recently National Safe Digging Month in the United States, when owners of underground infrastructure and others back events around the nation to raise awareness of the national Dial-Before-You-Dig service, which is available to anyone in the US by dialling 811.
In other initiatives, Atmos Energy Corporation, which distributes natural gas in Colorado, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia, launched a “Yard Rescue 811” contest. Residents of its service areas were invited to submit a photo of their yard – which could be a home, church, school or business – and ask friends and family to vote for it on the Atmos Energy Facebook page. The photos garnering the most votes in each state that Atmos Energy serves will win a $2000 prize.
Marathon Pipeline, which operates oil pipelines across large swathes of the US, sponsored a poster contest for children. They have been invited to create a poster to raise awareness of the 811 service. The best poster will win a $50 prize. Marathon has also, since 2013, produced three humorous videos that feature an exchange between actor John Ratzenberger and his neighbour ‘Joe’. “While undertaking a do-it-yourself project, Joe finds out the hard way that ‘safe digging always starts with a free call to 811’.”