PSE&G Urges Contractors and Customers to Follow Safe Digging Practices; Call 811

April is National Safe Digging Month

(NEWARK, N.J. – April 2, 2019) April marks the start of National Safe Digging Month. Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G), New Jersey’s largest utility, urges contractors, excavators and customers to call 811 before digging to help prevent gas emergencies. When an individual calls 811 to request a utility markout, they must wait three business days for the utility companies to properly mark underground lines with paint and flags. The markout will then remain valid for 45 business days. 

“Many of the gas damages PSE&G responds to on a regular basis are completely avoidable,” said Joe Forline, PSE&G’s vice president of gas operations. “When customers are hiring contractors for work that requires digging, such as fence and swimming pool installation, they should discuss the need to follow the law and call 811 to request a free markout at least three days before digging.”

Digging without knowledge of the location of underground utilities can result in: serious injuries, service disruption and costly repairs. In 2018, PSE&G responded to more than 850 excavating damages. The best way to prevent excavating damage is to call 811 before beginning any digging project this spring and use caution around marked facilities. It is not only the safe, smart thing to do -- it is the law.  

Prevention is key:

  • Contractors, excavators and customers should always call 811 to request that utility lines be located and marked before digging, to avoid hitting underground pipelines, conduits, wires and cables. This service is free, and critical to avoid injuries and disruptions to vital utility services. If there is excavation work occurring on your property, customers should always make sure that a contractor has called 811 before starting work. Every digging project, even a small project like planting a tree or building a deck with hand tools, requires a call to 811. 

What to do if you smell gas:

  • Quickly open windows and doors to ventilate the building. 
  • Leave the building as quickly as possible and move 350-feet away from the structure. Take all others with you. If you smell gas outside, move well away from where you suspect the gas is leaking.
  • Call PSE&G immediately at 1-800-880-PSEG (7734) and call 911.


More information about 811 is available at or on the PSE&G website: #Call811 #CallBeforeYouDig



Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G) is New Jersey’s oldest and largest gas and electric delivery public utility, serving nearly three-quarters of the state’s population. PSE&G is the winner of the ReliabilityOne Award for superior electric system reliability as well as the 2018 Outstanding Customer Reliability Experience Award. PSE&G is a subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PSEG) (NYSE:PEG), a diversified energy company. PSEG has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for North America for 11 consecutive years.