News Releases

North Shore Gas

For Release: 04/05/2013

North Shore Gas Reminds Residents to Call JULIE 811 Before You Dig

April is "Safe Digging" Month

Waukegan, IL – Spring has finally arrived and while residents may rejoice in the warmer temperatures that are expected during the next few days, North Shore Gas wants to remind its customers that the warmer temperatures and the increasing hours of daylight mark the start of the digging season as well.

April is National Safe Digging Month and the time of year when construction and improvement projects go into high gear. It's also the time when many residents begin their landscaping projects which may include the uprooting of trees and the installation of underground sprinklers. The utility is encouraging contractors, workers and residents to make sure that they follow pipeline safety procedures and be aware of natural gas pipelines buried underneath their property, before they begin to dig. In certain cases, natural gas pipelines can be only a few inches from the surface and easy striking distance even for shallow digging projects. Anyone planning work which involves excavation must call the Joint Utility Locating Information for Excavators (JULIE) hotline at 811 or (800) 892-0123 at least 48 hours before planning to dig. JULIE is a not-for-profit corporation that provides contractors, excavators, homeowners, and others who may be disturbing the earth, with a free service through a single toll-free phone number, 811, to call for the locating and marking of underground utility facilities. JULIE 811 alerts utility members in the area of your intent to dig. The buried utilities will be marked for free.

"Our North Shore Gas employees work diligently to complete all locates requests in a timely fashion and are always willing to refresh marks when needed," said Mark Kinzle, general manager, North Shore Gas.

North Shore Gas recently joined a host of companies, agencies, project managers and equipment operators in supporting The Greater Chicago Damage Prevention Council's 15th Annual Excavator's Breakfast. Attendees of the annual meeting work together to provide information aimed at reducing damages through public awareness and safe digging practices. The utility works closely with JULIE and The Greater Chicago Damage Prevention Council throughout the year to help prevent damage to pipelines during construction.

North Shore Gas also provides Workforce Awareness Training to any utilities, municipality, or contractor that wants to know more about safe working conditions around natural gas facilities. The training is held on the second Tuesday of every month. Contact System Integrity Engineer, Joseph Handschiegel, at (773) 395-4230 to reserve a spot in the training or for more information.

For more information or to find all of the utility's pipeline safety materials, visit

About North Shore Gas

North Shore Gas, a subsidiary of Integrys Energy Group, Inc. (NYSE: TEG), is a regulated natural gas delivery company that serves approximately 158,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers located in 54 communities within the northern suburbs of Chicago. For more information about North Shore Gas visit the company’s website:

For More Information, Contact:

  • Bonnie Johnson (Media)
    Manager, Public Relations
    (312) 240-4567
    (312) 907-7333 (CELL)