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National 8-1-1 Day highlights the importance of contacting Georgia 811 before starting a digging project

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Atlanta, Ga. – Aug. 11, 2022 – In honor of National 8-1-1 Day (August 11), Atlanta Gas Light reminds property owners and professional excavators of the importance of calling Georgia 811 before starting any outdoor digging projects.

Georgia law requires a call to 811 at least three business days before the work. The call notifies the appropriate utility companies of the intent to dig. Professional locators will come to the site for free to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags, paint or both.

“The safety of our team members, customers and community is our number one value at Atlanta Gas Light,” said Pedro Cherry, president and CEO of Atlanta Gas Light. “Digging without knowing the approximate location of underground utilities can result in serious injuries, inconvenient service disruptions and costly repairs. Summer is often the peak time for outdoor projects, and 8-1-1 Day is a good reminder to contact Georgia 811 before you dig. It is free and it is the law.”

Contacting Georgia 811 before digging is the easiest way to avoid damaging buried utilities. However, in a national survey conducted by the Common Ground Alliance, a national nonprofit organization working to protect underground utility lines, 49% of those surveyed, or approximately 34.9 million Americans, will take a risk by not contacting 811 before starting home improvement projects that involve digging.

Atlanta Gas Light encourages homeowners and contractors to follow these safe digging guidelines and always dig with CARE:

  • Call or Click Before You DigBefore starting any outdoor digging project, customers should call 811 or visit Georgia 811 at least three days in advance to request to have underground utility lines marked. The service is free. 
  • Allow the Required Time for Marking: After contacting Georgia 811, wait for locators to mark the approximate locations of underground utility lines before digging (about three business days). The lines will be marked with color-coded spray paint, flags or stakes corresponding to the utility. The color used for natural gas lines is yellow. 
  • Respect the MarksOnly use hand digging tools when digging near location markers.
  • Excavate CarefullyMake sure the marks remain visible during the project. If the markings are damaged or removed, customers are encouraged to contact Georgia 811 to have lines remarked.

If a natural gas line is damaged accidentally or the distinctive rotten-egg odor associated when natural gas is present, call 911 or the Atlanta Gas Light 24-hour emergency phone line at 1-877.427.4321 from a safe location. Do not operate any machinery or equipment that might cause a spark or create an open flame.

Atlanta Gas Light is also partnering with the National Excavator Initiative (NEI) and well-known TV personality, author and social media influencer Mike Rowe to spread the word about safe digging. Known for the hit TV series “Dirty Jobs,” and his groundbreaking Facebook show “Returning the Favor,” Rowe and his animated sidekick “Micro Mike Rowe” are helping Atlanta Gas Light highlight the critical importance of underground utility infrastructure and share what can go wrong if homeowners and contractors do not contact 811 before digging.

Learn more about natural gas safety at

For more information about Atlanta Gas Light, log on to our website or connect with us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

About Atlanta Gas Light
Atlanta Gas Light is one of four natural gas distribution companies of Southern Company Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO). Atlanta Gas Light provides natural gas delivery service to approximately 1.7 million customers in Georgia. In operation since 1856, the company is one of the oldest corporations in the state. For more information, visit

About Southern Company Gas
Southern Company Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE:SO), America’s premier energy company. Southern Company Gas serves approximately 4.3 million natural gas customers through its regulated distribution companies in four states with approximately 666,000 retail customers through its companies that market natural gas. Other businesses include investments in interstate pipelines and ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities. For more information, visit

Media Contact
Alicia Young
c: 770-658-9728