Multiple Gas Lines Cut | VideoChris Williams | 1/29/2013
Normally, construction doesn`t cause any problems to people around the area, but the last few days, that hasn`t been the case.
On Monday a natural gas line in Taylor was accidentally cut, while a contractor was digging.
The same thing happened over the weekend near Alexander.
A contractor digging about 2.5 miles east of Alexander struck the natural gas line. MDU had to shutoff natural gas for everyone living in Arnegard and Watford City. Residential homes and apartments, and Businesses didn`t have heat during the outage.
"We just really stress you call the 811 number before you dig utilities,” said MDU Worker Shane Homiston.
Because of the tremendous growth in the area, there are more utility lines under the ground than ever before. That`s why it`s not only important, but the law to call before you start digging.
"Once your locates are there you should make sure that the route is flagged. Get vac trucks and spot the pipeline, vac the dirt out, so you can see where it`s at before you start your dig,” Homiston added.
MDU marks where underground lines are by using flags, but during construction flags can get misplaced or moved.
"That`s why spotting is so important. If you vac out the dirt you can see where the utility you have to cross is at, and then hand dig once you get close, you know you’re getting close you can see it. Hand dig enough, so your excavator isn`t going to get into contact with anything,” added Homiston.
MDU can also respot flags. If you do hit a gas line, Homiston says to call emergency services.
"Clear the area, shut equipment off. Especially if it`s a gas line, you should shut your equipment off. Get out of the area, that stuff very explosive,” Homiston added.
MDU says natural gas has been restored to Watford City, Arnegard, and Taylor.