Protect yourself and your family: Call JULIE

April is National Safe Digging Month and we want to remind homeowners and professional excavators in Illinois to call JULIE, Inc. (JULIE) at 8-1-1 before every digging project this spring, regardless of the size or depth. This is a free call and service.

JULIE’s helpful call center agents are available to receive and process requests 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 8-1-1. E-Request is also a convenient option for homeowners who prefer to enter their own utility locate requests via the website: www.illinois1call.com.

When calling 8-1-1, homeowners and contractors are connected to JULIE, Inc., the Illinois One-Call System, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig.

Professional locators are then sent to the requested digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags, paint or both.

Every six minutes an underground utility line is damaged because someone decided to dig without first contacting JULIE. Striking a single line can cause personal injury, costly repairs, environmental or property damage liability, and inconvenient power outages.

When you are considering home improvement projects like building a deck, landscaping, fence installation, swing set assembly, or installing a mailbox, call JULIE.

The depth of utility lines can vary due to erosion, previous digging projects and uneven surfaces. Utility lines need to be properly marked because even when digging only a few inches, the risk of striking an underground utility line still exists.

Occasionally homeowners think they already know where the utilities are located. It’s always a good idea to contact JULIE, just to be safe.

From time to time, people believe what they’re planting is very shallow and they won’t have to dig very deep. Line depths can change over time and homeowners may be surprised by how close lines are to the surface.

Homeowner sometimes think, oh well, I had my garden in this space last year, so I don’t need to contact JULIE this year. By going just a little deeper, or to the left or right, you can hit a line. It’s happened to people before with shocking consequences.

Homeowners may have called JULIE several years ago and are convinced they know where the lines are located. Why take the chance, be safe and call JULIE again!

JULIE is a free call and service. Call before you dig.