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HF 2719

as introduced - 90th Legislature (2017 - 2018) Posted on 03/08/2018 04:46pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language. underscored = added, new language.

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A bill for an act
relating to public safety; modifying provisions governing the excavation notice
system;amending Minnesota Statutes 2016, sections 216D.03, by adding a
subdivision; 216D.05; 216D.06, subdivisions 1, 2.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 216D.03, is amended by adding a subdivision
to read:


Subd. 5.

Contact information database.

The notification center must create a database
to collect, maintain, and annually update the contact information for each operator in
Minnesota. At a minimum, the contact information stored in the database must include the
name, telephone number, mailing address, and other relevant contact information for the
operator or the person responsible for damage prevention for each underground facility.
The information contained in the database must be made available upon request.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 216D.05, is amended to read:


216D.05 PRECAUTIONS TO AVOID DAMAGE.

(a) An excavator shall must:

(1) plan the excavation to avoid damage to and minimize interference with underground
facilities in and near the construction area;

(2) use white markings for proposed excavations except where it can be shown that it
is not practical;

(3) maintain a clearance between an underground facility and the cutting edge or point
of any mechanized equipment, considering the known limit of control of the cutting edge
or point to avoid damage to the facility;

(4) provide support for underground facilities in and near the construction area, including
during backfill operations, to protect the facilities; and

(5) conduct the excavation in a careful and prudent manner.

(b) An operator must install underground facilities, including but not limited to gas,
electric, cable, fiber optic, and telephone facilities, at least two feet but no more than four
feet below the surface of the earth.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 216D.06, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Notice; repair.

(a) If any damage occurs to an underground facility or
its protective covering, the excavator shall notify the operator promptly. When the operator
receives a damage notice, the operator shall promptly dispatch personnel to the damage
area to investigate. If the damage results in the escape of any flammable, toxic, or corrosive
gas or liquid or endangers life, health, or property, the excavator responsible shall
immediately notify the operator and the 911 public safety answering point, as defined in
section 403.02, subdivision 19, and take immediate action to protect the public and property.
The excavator shall also attempt to minimize the hazard until arrival of the operator's
personnel or until emergency responders have arrived and completed their assessment. The
911 public safety answering point shall maintain a response plan for notifications generated
by this section.

(b) An excavator shall delay backfilling in the immediate area of the damaged
underground facilities until the damage has been investigated by the operator, unless the
operator authorizes otherwise. The repair of damage must be performed by the operator or
by qualified personnel authorized by the operator.

(c) An excavator who knowingly damages an underground facility, and who does not
notify the operator as soon as reasonably possible or who backfills in violation of paragraph
(b), is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(d) If an operator discovers damage to an underground facility, the operator must notify
the excavator immediately, but no later than 60 days after excavation and repair is completed.
An excavator is not liable for costs, claims, or other damages under subdivision 2 if the
operator does not provide timely notice under this paragraph.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 216D.06, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Cost reimbursement.

(a) If an excavator damages an underground facility,
the excavator shall reimburse the operator for the cost of necessary repairs, and for a pipeline
the cost of the product that was being carried in the pipeline and was lost as a direct result
of the damage.

(b) Reimbursement is not required if: (1) the damage to the underground facility was
caused by the sole negligence of the operator or the operator failed to comply with section
216D.04, subdivision 3.; or (2) the excavator proves (i) the precise location of the damaged
underground facility was incorrectly marked or unmarked, and (ii) the damaged underground
facility is located outside the standard installation depth established under section 216D.05,
paragraph (b).

(c) An operator must compensate an excavator for additional work performed to excavate
or repair underground facilities that is outside the scope of the original excavation and repair
agreement.

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700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569