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Only problem is they would have marked it in the wrong spot anyway!:censored: we've had to replace a few house connections that way this year!
This was last week, digging a footing for an ad myself, because I need to burn away those xmas cookies. Stabbed it a few times with my shovel before I realized it was the service to the house. Hate that feeling.
Called 811 the week before, the marked it on the other side of the house. Found the water main shortly after. Locate service is a joke sometimes....
 

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This was last week, digging a footing for an ad myself, because I need to burn away those xmas cookies. Stabbed it a few times with my shovel before I realized it was the service to the house. Hate that feeling.
Called 811 the week before, the marked it on the other side of the house. Found the water main shortly after. Locate service is a joke sometimes....
are you s****ing me?! so whats next? do we call it in to let them know these mistakes so they can update their records? never ran across this situation before.....
 

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Found lots of old clay tiles and sewer lines that noone knew about
 

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Sometimes it works, but I think of it more of a CYA in case something major gets hit. We hit a couple of coppers in the same new development. They were pretty far from the marks.

Last year a contractor hit a gas line a few miles from one of our jobs with probably a 160 size hoe. Didn't explode, but what a huge mess. They shut down the interstate that leads from d.c. North where all the government employees live. Hope they had a miss utility ticket open. That was a big line and I'm sure cost someone plenty.
 

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The worst CBYD problem we have ever had was repairing a 10 inch water main at 6 1/2 feet below grade. The water table was above the main so the excavator was digging a dewatering hole. About five minutes after digging the hole all of a sudden the hole started filling up really fast. And I mean really fast the guys were scrabbling to get out of they hole. Turns out we had hit a 12 inch sewer force main that was not marked out. When sewer department showed up they couldn't even tell us what direction the pipe ran. Needless to say we did not pay for the sewer repair but it did cause a lot of problems.
 

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I find stuff all the time that is not marked. Over half of the time it is an old line that has been abandoned.
That reminds me of the time I was setting a pole in an elderly gentleman's yard. I was hand digging the hole with a pair of 10' post hole diggers as he was telling me that there used to be a huge tree right where I was digging. The other guys in my crew were fiddling with our locator as there were no locates in the area.

I was steadily pulling out chunks of wood and roots from the old tree. At roughly the 4' mark I hit something tough. I though it was just a big root that wasn't rotten like the others. I smashed away for 5 or ten mins before I stuck my arm and head down into the hole to see what was going on.

I held the flashlight in my mouth and started to uncover what I was hitting, at first I saw just what I thought a big blackish tree root running in the middle of the hole... Then I saw the familiar glint of copper and aluminum tape.

I had chopped nearly a quarter of the way into a copper cable as thick as my forearm! I nearly crapped myself, I wanted to crawl into the hole head first and die. :censored:

I got up and yelled to the other guys, we all got panicked and started pointing fingers. Huge argument ensued before we got out the plats. Nothing on the plats indicated any buried cable in the area at all let alone copper, this neighborhood was all aerial fiber.

We called the boss and I started digging a splice pit by myself while the other guys sat in the truck. I had to chop out the entire buried root section of what seemed to be an ancient tree with a blunt axe. Once I had dug the hole big enough for even the fattest splicer to sit down in I started cleaning and inspecting the cable.

It was most assuredly cut, but when I brushed my fingers over the end I didn't feel any tingle, nothing, I was thinking to myself... "hmm no house alarms went off in the surrounding area" (first thing that happens when you cut a cable if they are there). At that moment my super pulled up in his truck rolled the window down and said. "That cable was abandoned in the 60's, cover it up and have a nice weekend".

It was 3:30, I filled a 5x5x4 ft hole in under 15 mins. :laughing:
 

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I always CBYD and it is a joke for the most part..we live in the part of Florida where it is mostly sand and loose soil..the bury depth of anything other than power is less than 10".
Long story short...I had to set a bunch of posts for a fence...I even went so far as to upside down spray a marker line for where the posts will be..they came along and set their flags...water, phone, gas, cable etc....I have to find the pictures..I was using a post hole digger and I found wire in every hole almost...24" away from every flag!!!... My marker line is a the white line..theirs are the orange ones and flags

It is like you have to call just to cover your butt because the location service is joke but you are screwed if you cut a line without calling them first.



 

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Look at the depth of those lines in the pictures above...it was a miracle that I didn't slice anything up..when I say every hole had some color in it I was not joking..my guy who was helping me usually does the grunt work and he said to me " boss, I ain't as lucky as you..keep making the holes i will finish it all after that".

I know it is not power lines but cable or phone are as important to some people..
 

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This was last week, digging a footing for an ad myself, because I need to burn away those xmas cookies. Stabbed it a few times with my shovel before I realized it was the service to the house. Hate that feeling.
Called 811 the week before, the marked it on the other side of the house. Found the water main shortly after. Locate service is a joke sometimes....
No offense but some homework is required. Where is the service in the house?
Lines are typically straight shots to the meter or to the house.

Glad you didn't get hurt.
 

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Within 2 feet is the default margin of error.
look at the depth though..plus with such shallow lines don't you think if I outlined the area they could virtually nail the exact location?..it's not like we have anything in the soil to throw off the sensors..it is laziness..that is all.
 

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look at the depth though..plus with such shallow lines don't you think if I outlined the area they could virtually nail the exact location?..it's not like we have anything in the soil to throw off the sensors..it is laziness..that is all.
They are just lazy, thats why we have our own locate guy.

In florida 90% of the time they just chop a line in the sod with a shovel and shove the cable under and stomp the grass back down.

As for it being a straight shot... only if the tech cut it the right length lol. Any slack gets buried too resulting in some pretty squiggly runs.

My company policy is to hand dig all marked linesand visually confirm there location. If we cant find the lines within a reasonable area of the locates we call again just out of courtesy.
 

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I double check every markout using copper wire trick and I have been right on the money with the utility location.

As a matter a fact the last new house I built, I had to tap into the street to bring the water and sewer in... I called for markout and the only marks they had was in the street. So for the heck of it, I walked across the property between the sidewalk and the curb, and sure enough I found both laterals for water and sewer already behind the curb.
The sewer line was capped underground and the water cap was buried.

Saved me a lot of money going for street opening permit and doing the taps... just the permit for the taps is almost 4k in this town.
But I did had to do the water tap, because the did main relining a while back and since there was no house, they never blew-out the water line, so it was capped. But that was considered a repair and I didn't have to go for permits...

With that said, marks or no marks you have to be careful when digging, especially in residential areas, and always have a guy or do DIY have a steel rod to poke the ground every 6-12" as you go. In many cases you will see the soil changes and you know if something was or could have been done in that area... Just have to pay close attention always.
 
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