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Dig Law

Rule and Regulation Changes

Regulation Changes Effective 8/13/19

Changes to Title 155 NAC Chapter 1 and Chapter 2, signed by the Governor, are effective as of 8/13/19. Those changes include the following:

Ticket Start Time
Previously, the start times were calculated on a ‘rolling’ two working day notice. For example, a request made Monday at noon could have a start date as early as Wednesday at noon. As of 8/13/2019, the new calculation will not include the day the request is made to provide for a full two working day notice. For example, a request made Monday at noon would require a start date of sometime on Thursday (Monday doesn’t count, Tuesday and Wednesday would be two full working days).

Ticket Life
The ticket life will be calculated by adding 17 calendar days to the start date and time requested on the ticket. Refresh tickets should be requested anytime marks are destroyed or become unusable, but a refresh will be required if work will continue beyond the expiration date. In order to avoid delays, refresh tickets should be completed at least two working days before the ticket expires. The ticket expiration date is shown/listed on the ticket.

Mandatory Electronic Positive Response
All underground operators in NE are required to provide electronic positive response to NE811 for every ticket received. That status is then communicated to the excavator, along with any notes, allowing them to know when they could start their jobs without having to make a trip to the site. Any utility that is not currently configured to provide positive response should contact NE811 as soon as possible at: neltm@occinc.com including your name, company name, a contact phone number, and any questions you may have or by phone to 866-679-9076.

Marking Standards
Effective 8/13/2019, operators shall mark lines using the APWA color code. Markings shall include the use of paint, flags, stakes, whiskers, signs, or posts or any combination of these. Painted spots or dots can be used to identify utilities; the direction of the facility must be identifiable. Offsets can be used when there is a strong likelihood that the marks may be destroyed. Offsets are placed parallel to the running line of the facility. The offset shall indicate the distance and direction from the offset to the facility. When known, the markings shall include: the size of the facility, if over 2 inches in width; the material make-up of the facility, and the facility (owner) name.

Refer to Nebraska Statue 76-2323 for more information on marking underground facilities.

Hand Digging
Hand digging shall be required within eighteen inches plus half the width of the marked underground facility. A person shall expose the underground facility to its outermost surfaces by hand or other nondestructive techniques.

Definition of Hand Digging: any excavation involving non-mechanized tools or equipment. It shall include but not be limited to, digging with shovels, picks, and manual post-hole diggers, vacuum excavation or soft digging.

The full text of Chapters 1 & 2 can be found below:

Fully Executed Title 155 Chapter 1

Fully Executed Title 155 Chapter 2

Status Codes

Current Status Codes:

Definitions Status Code definitions for use when a utility is providing Electronic Positive Response on a locate ticket.

  • Clear/No Conflict – when the locator has determined that they have no utilities or facilities in the area of excavation.
  • Marked – when locator has marked facilities in the area of excavation.
  • Marked – when locator has marked facilities in the area of excavation.
  • Area of excavation could not be determined – when the locator has questions or is unsure what the area of excavation is. More communication between the excavator and locator needs to take place.
  • Not complete/In progress – when a locator is working on the locate request, but all work has not been completed.
  • Maps or other Documentation Provided – when a facility owner has given as-builts or other maps that provide the location of their facilities. Usually no electronic locate has been performed because of many reasons.
  • Locator could not gain access to the property – when a locator cannot gain access to a property. It could be a locked fence for a backyard or a fenced in area around a cell tower. This needs to have more communication between the excavator and the locator so the locator can gain access and complete their obligation under the statute.
  • No locate performed – the locator did not perform a locate. Used on “Damage” or “Cancelled” ticket types.
  • Marked-Standby requested – used when a facility owner has marked their facility but wants to be on-site while the excavator is performing their work. The facility owner might want to insure no damage occurs to a fiber or high voltage power line that impacts many customers.

Questions can be directed to ne@occinc.com