Sunshine 811 held its annual elections at the 2018 Annual Meeting, May 17, 2018 in DeBary. Re-elected to the board for fiscal year 2018-2019 are: Carlos Bates, Frontier Communications; Dino Farruggio, AT&T; Lisa Jackson, Hillsborough County Public Utilities; Michelle Johnson, Duke Energy; Lorenzo Jones, TECO; and Pedro Vigil, Miami-Dade Water & Sewer.

Damage prevention stakeholders request legislative enforcement study - recommendations


Sunshine 811 and industry stakeholders including the Florida Natural Gas Association, TECO Peoples Gas, AT&T, Florida Internet and Television, the National Utility Contractors Association of Florida, and the Florida Energy Pipeline Association, have asked the Legislature to conduct a study of Florida’s damage prevention law enforcement program with recommendations for future legislation as appropriate.

This request follows annual determinations made by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), U.S. Department of Transportation, that the State of Florida's enforcement of its excavation damage prevention law is INADEQUATE.

PHMSA’s determinations, made initially for 2016 and again for 2017, have opened the door for federal enforcement action to be taken against excavators that violate federal one-call law and damage PHMSA-regulated pipelines with fines of up to $205,648 per violation per day with a maximum civil penalty of $2,056,380 for a related series of violations.

Purpose of Legislature Study

  • Identify options and future legislation needed to bring the State of Florida in line with federal enforcement standards;
  • Increase compliance with Florida’s one-call law; and
  • Reduce excavation damages to underground facilities through more effective enforcement of Chapter 556, the Underground Facility Damage Prevention and Safety Act, Florida Statutes.

A copy of the May 11, 2018 letter to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House is provided below.

2017 mandatory FL DIRT, DIRT data due 3/31/18

With the deadline for mandatory submission of damage data (effective July 1, 2017) just around the corner, Sunshine 811 urges all of its members to get their damage data uploaded into the FL DIRT system as soon as possible. 

s.556.105(12)(b) If an event damages any pipe, cable or its protective covering, or other underground facility, the member operator receiving the notice shall file a report with the system. Reports must be submitted annually to the system, no later than March 31 for the prior calendar year, or more frequently at the option and sole discretion of the member operator.

Already using Florida DIRT?

If you already submitted your 2017 data, thank you! No further action is required.

If you have nothing to report, please go to "submission status" within the Florida DIRT Main Menu and check the box indicating your report is complete for 2017.

New to damage reporting?

Florida DIRT is a personalized version of the Common Ground Alliance's Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT). Its purpose is to gather meaningful data on underground facility events. An event is defined by the CGA DIRT User’s Guide as “the occurrence of downtime, damages and near misses.” It helps us determine probabilities using national data. See the graphics to the right for some examples. With more Florida data, we hope to do the same using state-relevant numbers.

Florida DIRT is a way for you to anonymously submit data into a broad database that is analyzed for root causes that lead to events. The primary purpose is to promote safe excavation practices that prevent damages.

For more information on Florida DIRT visit sunshine811.com/florida-dirt. Use the 2017 forms to submit 2017 data. All 2018 data should be reported using the Fresh DIRT forms dated 11/2017.

Already using CGA's national DIRT?

It is mandatory for all members to report damages to the system. If you're already using the Common Ground Alliance's national DIRT, or your company wants to use the national system, you need to grant Sunshine State One Call of Florida, Inc. access to your data. The steps to do this are below. 


Sunshine 811 clarifies role, issues disclaimer in response to email solicitation

Sunshine 811 is a neutral party that takes information from an excavator and transmits it to a member operator (utility company or facility owner). Sunshine 811 does not own, operate or locate underground utilities. Sunshine 811 does not dispatch locators to locate underground utilities.

You may have received an email or phone call from a company offering private utility locating services. In response, we want to clarify a few things.

Sunshine 811 Responds to Hurricane Irma with Successful Public Awareness Campaign

Hurricane Irma’s unprecedented power outages got a lot of press. People knew what to do when they encountered an above-ground electric line, but no one warned them of underground lines.

So Sunshine 811 developed an earned media campaign that came together in less than a week after Hurricane Irma to take advantage of Irma’s major news draw. It ran Sept. 13 – Nov. 30 and educated Floridians on the need to call 811 before any digging – even storm recovery.

Sunshine 811 introduces new app

It's dig site information in the palm of your hand

The new Sunshine 811 app makes it easier than ever to keep track of member responses with a simple tap on Positive Response. With real time updates, you're always comparing the most recent responses with what you see at your dig site. Keeping you and your crew safer and in the know.