After the Storm Clean Up Tips

When a hurricane leaves a trail of broken fences, toppled trees and power outages in its wake, recovery and clean up take center stage with little thought of anything else.

We get it. You're eager to finish removing large trees and other debris, and even get your yard spruced up. But underground utilities can pose a real danger. The last thing we want is for your efforts to create a communications or power outage that affects you or your neighbors.

That's why you must call 811 first, wait for marks and dig carefully. Check out some of the reasons why below. Then, read the Q&As  for more information or visit our homeowner page.

NOTE: If you see a line down, running across your street, yard, driveway, or even the freeway, DO NOT cut it to get it out of the way. It could still be live! Cutting it could cut off communications, making it virtually impossible for electric and communications companies to coordinate utility restoration. That means longer without power and internet. Worse, it could be a live electric line and you could lose your life.



+ Why should I make a free call to Sunshine 811 at 811 before I dig?

Knowing the approximate location of buried utilities before digging (regardless of depth) helps protect you from damaging important gas, electric, communications, water and sewer lines. Damaging these lines can lead to inconvenient service outages, repair costs and in some situations, injuries. A buried utility line is damaged every six minutes in the United States because someone didn’t make a free call to 811 before digging. Sunshine 811 wants to make sure you don’t become part of this statistic.

  • NOTE: Utility companies do not locate private utilities. These include water and sewer lines from the meter to the house and lines running from the home to an outside building.

+ What types of projects require a call to Sunshine 811 at 811 before they can begin?

Whether you’re landscaping, installing a mailbox or basketball goal, or building a deck, you should only start the project after making a free call to Sunshine 811 at 811. Simply put, it’s always the safest decision to call Sunshine 811 at 811 before any digging.

+ How much notice do I need to give before I plan to dig?

You need to provide at least two full business days of notice. So, if you plan to replace the fence or grind that stump on Saturday, you'll want to call 811 or use Single Address Ticket Tuesday or Wednesday.

+ What happens when I call?

A Sunshine 811 customer service representative will ask you a series of questions, including your address, closest cross street, the type of project planned and the area on your property where the digging will occur.

+ What happens after I call?

  1. You will receive an email from Sunshine 811 that includes:
    • Your ticket number
    • A list of the utility companies that will receive notification of your plans
    • The work start date and due date
    • The ticket's expiration date
  2. Wait for utility companies to respond and either mark their lines with paint or flags, or determine that your proposed dig site is not near their buried facilities.
  3. Confirm that all lines have been marked or declared clear by using the Positive Response System.
  4. Avoid digging near the paint marks entirely if possible. If that is not possible, dig carefully around the marks.

+ Can I request a Sunshine 811 ticket online?

You can! You can use Single Address Ticket.