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 Jennifer Pratt,
Program Manager
Damage Prevention Council of Texas
Excavation projects for utility installations, construction,
or landscaping are rising across the state. However, beneath the surface lies a network of underground utilities that can pose serious risks if not handled carefully. This is where DigSafe comes into
play, serving as a crucial initiative to ensure safe digging practices, prevent accidents, and facilitate collaboration among stakeholders in the construction industry.
DigSafe (also known as Excavation Safety Days) is the DPC of Texas’ premier event allowing individuals to learn about topics that impact their daily work.
One Call System
DigSafe emphasizes the importance of the “One Call” system, a centralized service that allows contractors and excavators to notify utility operators about their plans to dig. This helps locate and mark the underground utilities before excavation begins, preventing accidental damage.
Issues with the One Call system, such as missed markings, late locates, or incorrect information, are also addressed by DigSafe to enhance the reliability of this crucial step.
Pre-Excavation Planning
Proper planning is a cornerstone
of safe digging practices. DigSafe encourages stakeholders to conduct thorough research on the excavation site, identifying potential underground hazards and utilities. Creating a detailed excavation plan that includes hand tools, safe digging zones, and proper equipment ensures a safer work environment.
DigSafe: Promoting Safe Digging Practices and Collaboration in Excavation
Outdoor Demos
DigSafe actively engages with the community by organizing outdoor demonstrations that showcase safe digging techniques and the latest excavation equipment. These events serve as educational opportunities
for contractors, utility operators, and the public to witness firsthand the importance of following best practices.
Trench Safety
Trenches are a common feature in excavation projects, and their proper management is crucial for preventing accidents. DigSafe promotes trench safety by:
• Educating contractors on shoring systems or sloping techniques to prevent trench collapses.
• Encouraging protective systems such as trench boxes and shields to enhance worker safety in excavations.
Networking Opportunities
DigSafe serves as a hub for networking within the construction industry. Through DigSafe, professionals can connect, share experiences, and discuss challenges and solutions related to safe digging practices. This collaborative approach fosters a culture of continuous improvement and knowledge-sharing.
DigSafe is pivotal in promoting safe digging practices, preventing accidents, and fostering collaboration within the excavation industry. By advocating
for the One Call system, organizing outdoor demonstrations, addressing trench safety concerns, and providing networking opportunities, DigSafe contributes to a safer and more efficient construction environment. As
the construction industry continues to evolve, initiatives like DigSafe will remain essential in ensuring the well- being of workers and the integrity of underground utilities.
  Stay tuned for more information on DigSafe events. Stakeholders will be able to join us in one of the following locations:
• Houston
• Austin
• Dallas
• Tyler
• Lubbock
• Abilene
• McAllen
• Corpus Christi
• Monahans
• Brownsville
We look forward to seeing you at an event soon. Visit our website at upcoming-events for a list of upcoming chapter meetings and DigSafe events in your area.
6 • Texas811 2024, Issue 1

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