JOLIET IL — Utilities and telecom services are more important now than ever before. With more Illinoisans at home during the COVID-19 crisis, they are more reliant than ever on having the electricity, gas, telecom and water services on and working.
As everyone works together to face the difficult challenge of responding to the coronavirus, JULIE remains open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For professional excavators, JULIE encourages them to consider if their project actually is covered as an essential function under Governor Pritzker’s “shelter in place” order and/or if it can wait, as JULIE anticipates that some of their members’ staffs across the state will be impacted by COVID-19.
“With spring in the air, homeowners will start thinking about starting those outdoor projects,” said Mark Frost, Executive Director of JULIE, Inc. “If your project entails any type of digging, we ask you to consider if it can wait until the ‘shelter in place’ order is lifted.”
Regardless of when a project starts, JULIE wants to remind anyone digging of a few very important steps to take before digging in:
• Provide adequate time to have underground lines located and marked – Contact JULIE at least 2 business days before starting your project.
• Never use mechanized equipment near buried utilities or pipelines – carefully hand dig within 18 inches either side of the marked approximate location of the buried underground facilities.
• Use extreme caution if digging near an underground line. Taking out the telecom service may not cause physical harm, but it may impact the entire neighborhood.
• If an underground service line is damaged, contact both JULIE and that underground operator immediately.
Getting buried utility lines located and marked is free and easy. Simply dial 8-1-1 or go online and submit your locate request via JULIE’s self-service option called e-Request, wait the required time, and dig with extreme care and caution. JULIE personnel do not locate or mark any underground lines.
Based in Joliet, the not-for-profit organization represents 1,950 members and covers Illinois, outside the city of Chicago. For an explanation of the color-code markings and information about the one-call process, visit www.illinois1call.com.