Known as "locate flags," the person who called for their placement is responsible for removing them when the job is complete.
State law requires contractors, utilities or individuals who plan to dig — even a homeowner planting a tree — to call 811 to come locate underground utilities in the work area.
Different colored flags signal the different utilities: blue for water, yellow for oil and gas, orange for telecommunications, green for sewer and drain lines, red for electric, white for excavation and pink for temporary survey. Any paint markings aren't permanent and should fade over time.
If locate flags are in place for more than 14 days without any activity, the property owner can remove them because they are no longer valid at that point. Denton city spokeswoman Jessica Rogers recommends that a property owner concerned about lingering flags call 811 to get more information about who called in and requested utility locations.
In addition, when work is being done in the city's right of way, a public works inspector will also verify that the flags were removed at final inspection, Rogers said.
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