Before digging (even in your own yard), make sure that no sewer main or other utilities cross the path of your excavation. Call JULIE for locating of electric, phone, cable and other utilities. It is now possible to reach JULIE by dialing just the three numbers 811 or you can use the toll-free telephone number, which is 800 892-0123.
Each JULIE member is responsible to mark their own underground facilities with paint or flags within the two (2) working day period required by law (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and holidays).
How DeKalb Sanitary District Responds
To prevent damage to the public sewer mains that could cause disruption of service to many homeowners, the DeKalb Sanitary District participates in the JULIE program and marks sewer main whenever there is any possibility that excavators will hit it. The flag color for sewer is green.
District staff respond promptly to JULIE locate requests by:
- painting or flagging the sanitary sewer location with green paint
- placing one "OK" flag in the excavation area to indicate there is no public infrastructure there
- telephoning or faxing an "all clear" to the originator of the J.U.L.I.E. call
If there is Public Sewer Present
If there is NO Public Sewer Present
Watch out for Private Sewer Lines
Even if no public sewer main crosses your property, remember that your home or business does have a private sewer lateral which you own and which connects your property to the public main.
Proceed with Caution
If there is no public infrastructure in your yard, your digging presents no threat to the public utilities, and we will not have to flag before you dig. However, you could still seriously inconvenience yourself by slicing into your private sewer lateral with a shovel or puncturing it with a fence post.
It's Your Property...And Your Responsibility.
Investigate yourself by looking for the location of plumbing leaving your building and identifying its probable path to the main. You can also ask for a plumber's educated opinion of where your private sewer pipe (house lateral) is located.
While digging, watch what you're doing and stop if you see signs of any buried infrastructure.
Better Information in the Future
Especially in the older areas of town, locations of private building laterals were never recorded. They may connect to the "logical" and nearest sewer public pipe so that you can figure out where they must be. But they may have been installed before the nearest public sewer and their placement not "make sense" today. Years ago when some of these pipes were laid, your neighborhood may have looked much different than it does today.
Today, the DeKalb Sanitary District requires "as-built" drawings from every new development so as to be better able to answer home and business owner's questions in the future.
JULIE, Inc. (Joint Utility Locating Information for Excavators) provides homeowners and professional excavators with one place to call for safe digging. JULIE serves as a message handling notification service for underground facility owners, taking information about planned excavations and distributing this information to its membership. It is then the responsibility of each facility owner to mark the location of their underground facilities at the excavation site. Each kind of underground facility owner has an assigned color for flags and/or paint to mark the location of its lines.
To learn more about the JULIE organization, visit their website. The address is http://www.illinois1call.com/.