Page 15 - Alabama 811 Magazine 2020 Issue 4
P. 15

Legislative Corner
Alabama’s Underground outline requirements relative to survey/ copy the drawings or other records of
Damage Prevention legislation design requests. the underground facilities within the
has been enacted since This Section §37-15-4.1 outlines that proposed area.
1994. Over the years there
have been amendment to strengthen within five working days after The purpose of this change was
and improve the damage prevention program in our state. We will focus on some of the key terms and sections to ensure a thorough understanding of the underground damage prevention as outline in Alabama state law.
Alabama Statute 37-15-4.1: Design and Survey Locate Request
Prior to this section being added, approximately five years ago, there was no distinction between excavation locate requests for utility marking compared to those that were being processed
for survey or design purposes where there was no intention of immediate excavation. This often caused survey and design requests to not be responded to as they were not for “excavation”. This new section of the law helped to
notification to the one call notification center, the facility operator shall respond by one of the following methods:
1. Mark the approximate location of all underground facilities in the area of proposed excavation;
2. Provide the person submitting
the design or survey request the best available description of all underground facilities in the area of the proposed excavation which may include drawings of underground facilities already built in the area or other facility records that are maintained by the facility operator; or
3. Allow the person submitting the design or survey locate request, or any other authorized person, to inspect or
to help ensure that those needing information regarding the existence
of the underground facilities at a particular future excavation site are able to ascertain this information even though immediate excavation is not planned. This allows for the future development and the existing facility owners to work together to determine where future structures and facilities are placed in regard to existing infrastructure.
Even with this change, there are still some challenges around ensuring proper response to these type of requests. As the stakeholders continue to work through these issues and discuss best ways to accommodate
the needs for both groups, we should use this information to strengthen the existing law to ensure better working relationships and communications.
2020, Issue 4 Alabama 811 • 13

   13   14   15   16   17