Legal Notice

Legal notice is defined as a location request made at least 2 full working days (not including the day you call in the request, weekends, or holidays) but not more than 10 working days before the excavation is scheduled to begin.

Aside from meeting legal obligations, 2 working days’ notice allows our member utilities enough time to manage all the requests.

If legal notice cannot be given, Dig Safely New York must still be contacted. Member utilities must make an effort visit each site.

Site Marking

Paint, flags, or stakes indicating the presence of a buried facility should correspond to the following color codes:

Red = Electric

Yellow = Gas/Oil/Steam

Orange = Communications/CATV

Blue = Water

Green = Sewer

Pink = Survey Markings

White = Proposed Excavation

In addition to the standard colors, it is helpful to name the facility owner, or at least the specific type of facility. According to the law:

All staking and marking ... shall contain letter designations which will clearly identify the type of underground facility so staked or marked. Such letters shall comply with the following code:

  • C - Communication facilities (other than telephone service)
  • CH - Chemicals
  • CTV - Cable television
  • E - Electrical power
  • FS - Fire signals
  • G - Gas
  • HPW - High-pressure water (100 psig or more)
  • P - Petroleum
  • PP - Petroleum products (naphtha, gasoline, kerosene and similar products)
  • S - Sewer
  • ST - Steam
  • T - Telephone company services
  • TC - Traffic control signals
  • W - Water
  • O - All other facilities

Common Marking Styles

Facility operators should rarely provide depth information because site conditions can change (e.g., soil can erode). Be sure to communicate to the excavator that measurements are for width and that, even if received, depth information should not be used. The following are common marking styles for width of facilities:

Width of facility

Indicates a large facility or conduit; dashed lines indicate the outer edges of the facility
Indicates a large facility or conduit; 24” indicates width of facility

Pipes, lines, and cables

Indicates small pipes or cable(s) of unknown size


To learn more about other important terms and safety measures you'll need to understand, please click the links below.

The Tolerance Zone 

Utility Response

How to Enter Your Dispositions on the Web