Public Works

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61 Echo Lake Road
Watertown, CT 06795
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Ph: 860.945.5240

Call Before You Dig


Contact information
800-922-4455 or

When do I call CBYD?
Anyone planning an excavation project that requires the use of powered or mechanized equipment must notify CBYD a minimum two full working days before they start digging. Additionally, we strongly encourage you to call 811 even if you are only using hand tools for the project.

Before making the call
The excavator is required to ‘Pre-mark’ the area of excavation in white paint, white-tipped stakes, white tape or white flags. Pre-marking the area of excavation assist the utility locators to determine the scope of your excavation area. This information is required by state law and must be completed. Failure to Pre-mark your site could result in delays.

Making the call
According to state law, the person conducting the excavation is required to contact CBYD or submit a locate request themselves online. The caller must allow at least two full working days before the start of the excavation, excluding weekends and observed holidays. After your locate request is submitted, a confirmation ticket will be emailed to you with all the excavation details and a list of the utilities notified of the excavation. Phones numbers for the utility companies will also be provided should you need to contact them later.

After the call
Keep the ticket number you receive from CBYD; it is your legal proof that you have called CBYD and complied with the state law. You have 30 calendar days from the date the request was submitted (not the start date of excavation). Should your project extend beyond 30 days, a renewal ticket can be issued online or by contacting CBYD. Please be advised, a ticket can ONLY be renewed as long as it is still valid.

At the Dig Site
The excavator must confirm all the utilities have responded to the request. This response could be colored markings placed at the site or an email or phone call explaining they are clear of the excavation area. Once all utilities have responded and the start date and time has passed, you may begin your project. Remember, you can NOT excavate with power tools within 18 inches of natural gas markings.



Individual utility companies are responsible for marking their underground lines. Some utility companies contract the work to third-party contract locators.

Utilities and contract locators follow the American Public Works Association (APWA) Uniform Color Code when marking or flagging utilities (as seen in the image above).

REMEMBER…by law, the excavator must ‘Pre-mark’ the excavation area with white paint; white-tipped stakes, white tape or white flags before contacting 811. The purpose of pre-marking is to assist the utility locators to determine the scope of your work and identify their pipes or cables in an efficient manner.

  • If you don’t understand a marking, call the utility company directly.
  • Utility paint markings are biodegradable. In time, the markings will dissipate.
  • If you find paint marks or flags on your property and you did not notify CBYD, leave the marks or flags in place, as they are for a proposed excavation in your area.