The B.C. Government has proclaimed April, 2022 as Safe Digging Month! This declaration is important for raising the awareness and use of BC 1 Call early in the digging season to reduce preventable damage to critical underground infrastructure serving our communities and businesses, and also the related consequences of personal injury, service disruption, environment damage and project delays.
BC 1 Call is the link between the excavating community (including both professionals and homeowners) and our members, who are public and private sector owners of underground infrastructure across the province. Essentially, BC 1 Call takes a request for information on buried facilities within a proposed dig site, and relays the locate request to all of its members who have infrastructure at risk.
Notified BC 1 Call members then provide the critical information and instructions needed to avoid hitting underground lines. Preventing avoidable damage is a shared responsibility between those digging, BC 1 Call, and the owners of critical underground infrastructure.
Failure to contact BC 1 Call before breaking ground is consistently identified as one of the top two root causes of reported infrastructure damage incidents in B.C., with the other being excavation issues. Between 2017 and 2020, a failure to contact BC 1 Call was cited as the root cause of between 44% and 57% of all B.C. reported cases. According to the Canadian Common Ground Alliance, the percentage for 2020 was 49.4%. Though not as high as in previous years, considering BC 1 Call’s service is free and that severe consequences can result from not using it, it is still unnecessarily high.
Contacting BC 1 Call is a year-round best practice that prevents avoidable damages to infrastructure carrying drinking water, internet, heat, air conditioning, telecommunication and other critical services.
Damage incidents and service disruptions can be avoided, and you can help support BC 1 Call’s mission of keeping communities safe by preventing damage to underground infrastructure. Always request a locate in advance and remind your loved ones or fellow contractors to do the same. We are in this together!
Anyone can request a free locate request ticket online 24/7 at bc1c.ca or via phone during regular business hours at 1-800-474-6886. An online request through bc1c.ca can be done more quickly and conveniently.