Know What’s Below!

Homeowners need to remember that every digging job first requires a call to 811 at least two business days before digging to get utility lines marked -even small projects like planting trees and shrubs. We have a short season for getting outdoor work done on the north shore and we would all like to get our projects underway as quickly as possible. But speed is never worth a safety risk. Take the time to call and have underground utilities located so that you can safely dig.

Minnesota established Gopher State One Call (GSOC) in 1988 as a non-profit organization to provide a state-wide call center for individuals and professional excavators. For thirty years GSOC has coordinated locate services to excavators free of charge. Minnesota State law requires everyone from homeowners to professional excavators to contact Gopher State One Call (GSOC) before starting any excavating project if you are using machine-powered equipment of any kind. You may be simply installing a new mail box or planting a tree, whatever the project may be, contact GSOC before getting started.


The Process for Safe Excavation

  1. File a locate request.
    Call 811 or 800-252-1166, or use the GSOC App on your mobile phone, or go online to

Submit your request at least 48 hours (excluding weekends and holidays) before your planned start. You’ll need specific information about the work site and surrounding area.


  1. GSOC processes the information and uses specialized mapping software to detect possible conflicts with underground utilities. GSOC then contacts each underground facility operator in the excavation area (like Arrowhead Cooperative).
  2. The underground facility operators dispatch locators to the site to locate and mark the horizontal location of underground facilities with color-coded flags and paint.
  3. Confirm that all the facility operators have done their locating by checking your ticket online.
  4. Remember to always hand dig within the tolerance zone of underground facilities.

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