Need to know where your pipes underground are located?
If you are excavating, drilling and/or boring you must obtain a SAWS' locate to determine underground infrastructure. SAWS will provide location information about underground infrastructure through maps or locating with physical markers, etc.
How to Request a Locate
|EMAIL REQUESTS To|
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Requests Must Include the Following
Please provide the following pertinent information:
- Name or person making the request
- Contractor name, if applicable
- Contractor address, if applicable
- Phone number
- Email address
- Estimated date of excavation
- Location of excavation
- Street name, cross street and nearest physical address (per block)
- Starting and ending point
- 500 foot maximum distance request from point A to B. (Submit a separate request if more than 500 feet)
- Attach pictures and/or map drawing if applicable
- Area of excavation must be white-lined.
- Adhere to minimum separation distance of 18 inches from SAWS assets.
- Potholing or hand-digging must be done at all intersections over critical mains to verify the depth of the main, or when instructed by SAWS to avoid injury and/or damages to persons and property including SAWS underground facilities.
- In the event a SAWS locator cannot identify the location of a sewer lateral (or any other SAWS facility) due to the lack of maps or other existing records maintained by SAWS, the excavator must attempt to locate the sewer lateral or other facility through alternative methods including, without limitation, potholing, hand-digging, lateral camera etc. In such event, the locator will mark the ground with the words “Hand-Dig” indicating that the excavator must use alternative methods to identify the lateral or other SAWS facility before any excavation can begin to prevent injury and/or damages to persons and property including SAWS underground facilities.
- In the event an excavator needs additional information after receiving notice that a hand-dig of the area is required or needs additional information on any other matter, the excavator must contact SAWS using the same email that was used for the locate request to obtain any further information needed.
- Locate requests should be submitted no earlier than the 14th day before the date excavation is set to begin or no later than the 48th hour before the time the excavation is set to begin, excluding Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays. A “legal holiday” means a holiday specified as such by Subchapter B, Chapter 622 of the Texas Government Code.
- Once request is submitted, please allow 24 hours for a Service Request (SR) number to be generated and emailed back.
- Please allow 48 hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays) from submittal for locate to be complete.
- SAWS locates expire 14 days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays) from the submittal of the locate request.
- If excavating is still intended after 14 days and locate marks are no longer visible, please submit a new request.
- If excavating is still intended after 14 days and marks ARE clearly visible, please submit digital photographs of the locate marks in the area of excavation and only request that an update to the SR is needed.
- Please email using the above addresses, reference previous SR number, and state in the email that only an update is needed.
What to Expect
SAWS will respond to each locate request. After SAWS has been notified of the planned excavation, SAWS will, within the time-frame provided above, either:
- Mark the approximate location of our underground facilities using the American Public Works Association (APWA) color code guidelines for the identification of underground-buried facilities for SAWS.
- Request additional information if necessary.
- Notify the excavator to “Hand-Dig” by marking the ground where the anticipated excavation will occur to indicate that alternative methods must be used to identify the location of such facility before any excavation can begin to prevent injury and/or damages to persons and property including SAWS underground facilities and, upon request, provide all information known to SAWS based on existing records maintained by SAWS regarding the sewer laterals [or underground facility] within the area of excavation.
- Respond in writing that SAWS does not have any underground facilities at the excavation site via the email address provided in the initial service request or by fax, or SAWS will mark “clear” on the ground where the excavation will occur to acknowledge same.
- If only an update is requested, acknowledgement will be sent by a SAWS representative via the email address provided in the initial service request or by fax.
Contractors and excavators will be held liable for damages resulting from noncompliance with the foregoing Requirements. please contact SAWS ASAP via the email addresses ABOVE BEFORE you dig. For more detailed information on SAWS Standard operating procedures, please refer to Distribution & Collection-Utility Locate Service Requests which may be obtained by contacting .