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Mississippi 8-1-1: Please be patient during crisis

The COVID-19 health crisis is impacting services around the state, including Mississippi 8-1-1.

As per state law, is certain cases, you are required to “call before you dig”, but the coronavirus pandemic is straining resources.

The following is an important message to excavators from Operations Manager, Fred Johnson.

Notice and Appeal to all excavators,

As you are aware by now, our state is dealing with a health situation that most of us never dreamed would happen to us.  I am greatly encouraged by the examples of people reaching out and helping their neighbors through this crisis.

We don’t really know, at this point, just how devastating the COVID-19 will be on all our work forces.  At Mississippi 811 we are taking every measure to keep our employees healthy and able to meet your demands.  We are especially concerned about the effect this will have on the already strained locator personnel.  There may be delays that are beyond their ability to control due to their own sickness or need to care for children and other family members.  We will encourage them to communicate any delays to the excavator.  We, also, encourage excavators to be understanding as we go through trying times, ahead.

Some things to consider before you request a locate:

  • Is it truly necessary that the excavation take place immediately, or is it something that could be delayed?
  • Is it possible to mark the proposed excavation site with white paint or flags to avoid unnecessary work and time spent locating the project?
  • Am I asking for a larger area to be located than I can possibly excavate within the time allotted?

As the law allows, please call us back if you haven’t received a response from the utility, so that we can re-send the request to them.  Thanks for your cooperation with all stakeholders through the difficult times ahead and feel free to reach out to us if we can be of service to you.

Fred D. Johnson, Operations Mgr.

Mississippi 811, Inc.

onecall@ms811.org

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