CenterPoint reminds residents to call before digging

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

In 1987, the State of Arkansas enacted legislation that requires each person responsible for any excavation of demolition to call a statewide number to notify underground facility owners of proposed construction. Facility owners will mark existing facilities within two working days (48 hrs. excluding weekends and holidays.)

CenterPoint asks help to protect employees and natural gas facilities by asking everyone to call the Arkansas One Call System at (800) 482-8998, at least two working days but not more than 10 working days before doing any excavating in the CenterPoint Energy operating area.

Underground natural gas facilities will be marked with yellow paint and/or yellow flags. This locating service is available in all areas served by CenterPoint Energy and is provided free of charge. Excavations within eighteen inches (18") either side of CenterPoint Energy facilities must be accomplished by hand using non-mechanized excavation procedures.

Please note that an additional hazard exists when plastic pipe is damaged. Plastic pipe, with its excellent insulating properties, under certain operating conditions, can develop a very large static charge build up. As a person or object approaches the static charged pipe, a discharge of the static can occur resulting in the possible ignition of the escaping natural gas.

It is imperative that one does not enter any excavation where natural gas is escaping, or attempt to repair any damaged or broken natural gas carrying pipe. Arkansas law mandates that all excavators immediately notify the underground facility operator when any damage occurs to a facility.

Those seeking a copy of the Arkansas State One Call Law may contact Arkansas One Call at: 1-800-482-8998 or

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