As part of our maintenance and reliability process, we occasionally need to replace high-voltage underground electric lines on customers' property. When this occurs, DP&L uses trained excavation contractors to install new electric lines.
We appreciate customers' patience as work is completed in a safe and professional manner. We apologize for any inconvenience while the work is underway.
If work is being done on or near your property, here's what to expect:
1 - Before Work Begins
At DP&L, safety is our priority. Before any work begins, it is important to mark all underground utilities, both public and private. As required by Ohio law, DP&L uses the Ohio Utility Protection Service (OUPS) call 8-1-1 program. The contractor will request OUPS contact the public utilities to have them locate and mark their underground lines, such as cable, television, electric and gas, using flags and paint.
Additionally, DP&L contractors, with your assistance, will try to identify customer-owned lines such as electric lines to outbuildings, gas lines to grills and other appliances, private sewer lines, geothermal systems or other miscellaneous lines buried within the work area. Please alert the contractor to the nature and location of any privately-owned lines you are aware of to avoid any accidental damage to them.
2 - When Work is Underway
The excavation contractor will set up equipment in the vicinity of the electric line being replaced. If any special circumstances arise, the contractor will keep you informed. Some excavations will remain temporarily open throughout the process, but will be covered or barricaded by the contractor until all work is completed. For everyone's safety, please use caution and keep children or pets away from these areas. If you have pets usually located in or around the area where work is being done, please keep them away from our employees and contractors.
3 - When Work is Completed
After the new underground electric lines have been installed, DP&L crews will make final electrical connections. Typically, this can be completed without an outage. Sometimes, a brief outage is necessary for the crew to switch to the new electric line.
After all connections have been made, the contractor will use a combination of topsoil, grass seed and straw to restore the ground disturbed as quickly as possible, weather permitting.
Why are these flags in my yard?
The flags or paint are used to mark other existing utilities around the proposed work to prevent crews from damaging them during construction. Please do not move or remove the flags until the underground work is completed.
Can I plant a bush to hide the above-ground equipment?
No. DP&L must have access to maintain equipment. Please keep the equipment clear from vegetation, fences, decks and any structures within at least 10 feet in front, 3 feet to the sides and rear, and 25 feet above the piece of equipment.
How long will my power be out?
Usually, power can be switched to the new electric lines without interrupting your service. However, brief outages may be needed to safely make the transition. If you experience an extended outage of more than 5 minutes, please report your outage.
What happens if I accidentally damage an underground cable by digging into it?
Avoid problems and put safety first by calling OUPS at least 2-10 business days before you start any kind of digging or construction on your property. Damaging the underground electric line may be costly and could create an outage for you and your entire neighborhood.