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Contractor Hits Unmarked Power Line

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Joe and Judy Kaminski of Lower Macungie Township, Pennsylvania, hired a professional landscape contractor to plant trees in their yard to replace trees that died during recent storms. They felt comfortable knowing that the contractor, as required by state law, would make sure the underground utility lines in their yard were properly marked so they wouldn’t be hit during the digging.

But just a few minutes into the work, sparks flew from the hole and the power in their home went haywire. The lights flickered in the Kaminski’s home and a light bulb and socket blew clean out of the recessed lighting in their bathroom.

Their contractor, Greentree Nurseries, had hit an electric line that hadn’t been marked by their local power company, PPL. The lines were marked in the back yard, but not in the front. Fortunately, no injuries were reported but the homeowners were distressed that the line was unmarked.

“I’m so angry. Somebody could have been electrocuted,” said Judy Kaminski. PPL issued a letter of apology to the homeowners, writing that their line-marking contractor, USIC Locating Services of Indianapolis, had made an error by failing to mark the line.

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05.21.2013 at 03:59 Reply

Idiots...they should have been liable for all of the damages.


05.21.2013 at 09:53 Reply

In my area, if you don't specifically say you are working in the alley, they may not mark it.  Some of the locators consider it to be right-of-way, and not part of the property.  I have also had several instances where locators have failed to mark everything.  Seems like it is getting worse.  It is only a matter of time before someone gets hurt.


05.24.2013 at 08:20 Reply

This is news? I'll betcha there is no less than 20 of these per day in SCal.