Summary of the Introduced Bill

HB 425 -- Underground Facility Safety

Co-Sponsors:  O'Toole, Gambaro, Burton, Mays (50), Hickey,
Foley, McKenna

This bill makes several changes to the procedure for
notification of intent to excavate to owners or operators of
underground facilities.  The bill:

(1)  Excludes from the definition of the term "excavation"
certain work by railroads regulated by the Federal Railroad

(2)  Changes the definition of the term "marking" by
distinguishing between potable water, which is marked with blue,
and reclaimed water, which is marked with purple, and by
including cable television facilities in those to be marked in

(3)  Specifies in the definition of the term "notification
center" that the center will operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a
year, and will be governed by a board of directors elected by
and representative of the membership;

(4)  Requires all current owners and operators of underground
pipeline facilities to participate in a statewide notification
center by January 1, 2003.  Participation in the notification
center is mandatory after January 1, 2003.  Current law does not
require participation;

(5)  Requires notification centers to maintain a current list of
participating owners and operators, which must be made available
to excavators upon request.  The notification centers may charge
a reasonable fee to those requesting a copy of the list to cover
the costs of printing and mailing;

(6)  Changes notification requirements.  Prior to January 1,
2003, excavators must notify the notification center and
directly notify those owners and operators registered with the
Recorder of Deeds at least 2 but not more than 10 working days
prior to excavation.  Effective January 1, 2003, notice to the
notification center is considered notice to all owners and
operators of underground facilities;

(7)  Allows the owner or operator to require a copy of the
excavator's project plans for the site or to arrange a meeting
at the site with the excavator if the excavation area cannot be
determined from the description in the excavation notice.
Exempt from this requirement are residential property owners
excavating on their own properties;

(8)  Changes the notice of intent to excavate to include a
facsimile number, if available; availability of a person at the
telephone number listed on the notice between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00
p.m. on working days; and whether there is a recording device at
the telephone number;

(9)  Requires that the notice also include a description of the
excavation location by direction and approximate distance in
relation to prominent features of the site and specifies
additional information for excavations outside of city limits;

(10)  Requires the notification center to keep a written record
of each notice of intent to excavate for 5 years;

(11)  Changes the notification procedures when, during an
excavation, the excavator discovers that the owner or operator
has incorrectly located the underground facility.  The bill
requires the excavator to notify the notification center, which
will inform the participating owner or operator, or prior to
January 1, 2003, the excavator will directly notify the owner or

(12)  Allows excavators to continue working in a marked area so
long as the markings are visible.  If the markings become
unusable, the excavator must call the notification center to
request remarking.  The excavator must exercise reasonable care
not to obliterate the markings unnecessarily;

(13)  Requires the owner or operator of an underground facility
to inform the excavator of the approximate location of any
valves or other appurtenances at the same time and in the same
manner as the approximate location of the remainder of the
facility is furnished and to provide a telephone number by which
the excavator may contact a representative of the owner or
operator to meet at the site within one working day to furnish
available information relating to the appurtenances;

(14)  Changes the time frame for a meeting on-site of the owner
or operator and the excavator from within 48 hours to 2 working
days of the request for marking and allows the location to be
marked at the time of the meeting;

(15)  Allows the owner or operator to give notice of no
facilities at the site by calling the telephone number on the
notice between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on working days, leaving
a message on the excavator's recording device, sending a fax
message to the excavator, marking "no facilities" or "clear" at
the site, or verbally informing the excavator at the site.  Two
documented attempts to reach the excavator by telephone
constitute compliance;

(16)  Requires the excavator to give second notice to the same
entity to whom original notice was made prior to excavation if
the owner or operator fails to give location information.  If
after the second notice, the owner or operator fails to give
location information during the next working day, the excavator
may begin excavation;

(17)  Applies the bill's provisions to excavation sites
involving horizontal boring where the approximate location of
underground facilities has been marked in compliance with the
bill's provisions and where any part of the walls of the
intended bore are within the marked approximate location;

(18)  Prohibits excavators from using power-driven equipment for
horizontal boring within the marked approximate location of the
underground facilities until they have made careful and prudent
efforts to confirm the horizontal and vertical location of the
facilities through specified methods;

(19)  Prohibits after January 1, 2003, the recovery of damages
by any owner or operator failing to participate in the
notification center when notice of excavation was given;

(20)  Changes the damage notification requirement from notifying
the notification center and the owner or operator to notifying
only the notification center effective January 1, 2003; and

(21)  Specifies in which emergency situations excavation is
allowed without regard to notification requirements.  Emergency
excavation is allowed for unexpected occurrences, including
fires, floods, earthquakes, and riots.

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Missouri House of Representatives
Last Updated September 13, 2001 at 2:02 pm