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811 Day: Atmos Energy Reminds Homeowners and Contractors to Call 811 Before you Dig

Media Contact:  Jennifer Ryan   972.855.3164

(August 1, 2013) – Before you dig into your next outdoor project, Atmos Energy Corporation is reminding every homeowner, construction crew and do-it-yourselfer to call 811. The reminder comes as utilities across the nation recognize August 11, 2013, as 811 Day.

“It’s the law in every state we serve, from Colorado to Kentucky,” said John McDill, Atmos Energy vice president of pipeline safety. “The 811 program can save you time and money as well as prevent threats to life and property.”

By calling 811, homeowners and contractors are connected to their local one-call center, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. Professional locators are then sent to the digging site to mark the locations of underground utility lines with flags, spray paint or both.

“The greatest risk to underground natural gas pipelines is accidental damage during excavation,” McDill said. “Even minor damage such as a gouge, scrape, dent, or crease to a pipeline or its coating may cause a leak or failure. To protect pipelines and other underground facilities, the law requires that all excavators call 811 between two and ten days before excavation work begins on public or private property.”

Installing a mailbox, building a deck, planting a tree and laying a patio are all examples of digging projects that need a call to 811 before starting.

About Atmos Energy

Atmos Energy Corporation, headquartered in Dallas, is one of the country's largest natural-gas-only distributors, serving over three million natural gas distribution customers in over 1,400 communities in eight states from the Blue Ridge Mountains in the East to the Rocky Mountains in the West. Atmos Energy also manages company-owned natural gas pipeline and storage assets, including one of the largest intrastate natural gas pipeline systems in Texas and provides natural gas marketing and procurement services to industrial, commercial and municipal customers primarily in the Midwest and Southeast. For more information, visit www.atmosenergy.com. Atmos Energy can also be accessed through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.