Please be aware that digging holes with shovels to plant trees, using metal or wooden stakes to secure them or using an axe to remove existing trees involves the risk of damaging utilities in your yard. For the safety of our customers and employees, Treeland will contact Texas811 before each delivery. Texas811 is a notification center that will call each public utility operator that is responsible for electricity, gas, and communication lines. Each utility operator will come out and spray dashes on the grass or place flags where the public utility lines run. Utility operators will only mark the underground facilities that they own and operate up to the point of delivery to the consumer (a meter is considered the point of delivery).
The following private utilities will not be marked by Texas811: gas lines extending from the meter to the house, main water lines, sprinkler pipe, sprinkler wire, septic systems, swimming pool water lines, swimming pool gas lines, swimming pool electric lines, electric lanterns, gas lanterns, propane tanks/lines and landscape lighting. It is the customer’s responsibility to have each of these private utilities marked by a professional to prevent damage. A casual mentioning of the location of the private utilities by the homeowner will not be sufficient. Treeland takes no financial responsibility for repairs or reimbursing the customers for their costs when private utilities are not marked or not marked correctly (utilities that are within one foot of either side of the markings are located correctly). If the private utilities are marked correctly and they are damaged then Treeland will take financial responsibility for repairs or reimbursing the customers for their costs.
Gas lines are the most critical utility that we encounter because of the danger they present to our customers and crew. All lines leading to the meter are the responsibility of the utility provider to maintain and have located. Customers are held responsible for maintaining and locating gas lines that run from the meter into the house. It is pretty much like electricity, after the meter, the wiring in the home is the responsibility of the customer. The same thing is true with gas, after the meter, the customer is responsible. If customers have a gas meter that is located next to their house then the entire gas line will be marked by the utility provider once we contact Texas811. If the meter is located at the street or alley (not next to the house) then the utility provider will only mark up to that point leaving the private utility line that runs from the meter to the house unmarked. Given that situation it is the customer’s responsibility to contact a private utility locator to locate that utility. One private utility locator service that customers can contact is Encompass Inspections (Jeff Patterson @ 713-703-4005).
The most common utilities that Treeland encounters are main water lines, sprinkler pipes and drip irrigation pipe. If customers contact their public water provider, that provider will only mark their utility lines that run up to the meter and they will not mark the water line from the meter to the house. Main water lines can be located by hiring a professional plumber or a private utility locator. Concerning sprinkler pipes and drip irrigation pipe, customers would need to hire an irrigator to locate the pipe and prevent damage and costly repair bills. Some customers know the locations of the above ground sprinkler heads/bubblers but this does not indicate where the sprinkler pipes run below ground.
In the event that Treeland’s crew sees a utility that is cut or broken then our crew will ask the customer if the tree can be planted in another area. Otherwise if the customer does not want to move over then the crew will bring the tree back to the farm until the repairs are resolved. In either one of these scenarios Treeland’s crew will expose the area of the damaged utility. We realize this may leave an unfinished job but you should verify that your contractor is going to clean the yard and cover the hole.
There are instances when Treeland’s crew does not know that the utilities are damaged and the customer finds out after the job is complete. If there is a stake that has damaged a utility then Treeland will come back out at no charge to the customer and restake the tree. If the damaged utility is below the rootball and the contractor can’t fix the utility then we would dig up and replant the tree at no cost to the customer.
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