Why take the risk? Know what’s below before you dig.

Whether you’re building a fence or planting a vegetable garden, find out where underground utility lines are located before you start digging. Hitting a buried natural gas line can cause serious injury and expensive repairs for you and/or your contractor. It can even be fatal.

Contact Ontario One Call to locate underground utilities no less than five business days before starting digging projects of any size. It’s free and it’s the law.

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Planning a backyard project, such as fencing, landscaping or waterproofing? Utility lines may be buried below the surface of your yard. Before rolling up your sleeves, take our quick quiz to ensure you dig safely. Plus, you’ll get a chance to win! Every month, from June through September, two lucky winners will be awarded with a $500 gift certificate to a home improvement store.

Dig safely around natural gas lines to avoid:

Seriously hurting yourself, your family or neighbours.

Damaging property from a leak, fire or explosion.

Interrupting natural gas service to your community.

Incurring expensive repairs, charges or legal action.

Causing harm to the environment.

Won’t my contractor take care of this?

Never assume your contractor has taken care of it. Work in collaboration with them, and ask for verification that they’ve requested a locate before they start digging.

Get a locate for projects of all sizes


Building a fence

Digging a garden

Installing a driveway

Planting a tree

Building a deck

Installing a pool

Waterproofing a basement

What to do before you dig

Request a locate

Call 1-800-400-2255 or visit OntarioOneCall.ca at least five business days before starting your project.

You’ll be asked to provide:

  • Your name and address.
  • When work is expected to begin.
  • The type of project (fence, pool, etc.).
  • How you plan to dig (by hand or machine).
  • How deep you’re planning to dig.

Wait for buried lines to be marked

Locators from natural gas, water, sewer, electric and telecommunications companies will visit your home and paint or put flags to mark underground lines.

Private lines installed by you or a contractor, such as a gas line from your house to a pool heater or barbecue, are not included as part of this work and will require a separate locate. You’ll need to hire a private locate company to mark these lines and there is a charge for this service.

Respect the marks and dig safely

Once locates have been completed, follow the instructions and proper excavation practices to ensure a safe and smooth project. Review the how-to videos below prior to digging to make sure you are fully informed on what to look for and how to dig safely.

Refer to Enbridge Gas’ Third-Party Requirements Standard for details.

How to dig safely around natural gas lines

How to understand your locate

Locates show the approximate position of underground lines and cables, while locate sheets map out your work area. Here’s how to review both carefully before you dig.

How to dig around a natural gas line with a shovel

Buried lines may not be as deep as you expect. If you’re using equipment within one metre of a locate mark, here’s how to expose the natural gas line with a small shovel or a spade.

How to recognize a natural gas line

Several types of natural gas lines may run below your property. Learn how to identify each type so you can dig carefully around them and avoid serious injury and damage.

Know the colour codes

Locates show the direction and approximate location of the natural gas line, but do not show their depth. A natural gas line could lie just a few inches below the surface.

Yellow: Natural gas, oil, steam
Green: Sewer, storm
Red: Electric
Orange: Communication
Blue: Water
Purple: Irrigation, slurry
Pink: Temporary survey markings
White: Proposed excavation

What to do if you damage a natural gas line or smell gas

Stop work immediately.

Clear everyone from the area.

Call 911 if you smell or hear gas escaping.

Call the Enbridge Gas emergency line at 1-866-763-5427.

Businesswoman looking at tablet

Are you a contractor?

Hitting an underground utility can delay your project and put your crew, company and community at serious risk. Learn how to excavate safely to prevent injury, fines and penalties.

See safe digging tips

Businesswoman looking at tablet

Planning work near vital pipelines?

When you request a locate from Ontario One Call, the locate service provider may identify that a vital natural gas pipeline is within 30 metres of the proposed work area. Legally, you can’t begin work until a you obtain a clearance.

More information

Request your free locate

Call 1-800-400-2255 or submit your request online no less than five business days before starting your project.