Fire companies will have a chance to win $500 for their organization simply by posting a message on their marquee or their building that promotes “Call 811 Before You Dig.”

Pennsylvania 811, a private nonprofit, is offering those prizes to get out the word about the importance of calling 811 before digging as part of its annual Fire House 811 Campaign. PPL Electric Utilities is one of the sponsors of the campaign.

To qualify, fire organizations are asked to post their message, take a photograph of it and send it to

Click here for all of the details.

Photos will be accepted between May 17 and Dec. 13 and each entry will be added to drawings that will occur on the second Friday of each month between June and December. [Only one entry is allowed for each fire station.]

Drawings will occur on June 14, July 12, August 9, Sept. 13, Oct. 11, Nov. 8 and Dec. 13.

Among some of the common messages:

  • “Know what’s below. Call 811 before you dig.”
  • “Call 811 before you dig.”
  • “Call 811 before digging.”

Fire companies that don’t already have a marquee can request a 4-foot by 8-foot mesh banner from Pennsylvania 811. To order a banner, send an email to or call 412-464-7136.

Pennsylvania 811 says that underground utility lines are damaged every six minutes because someone digs without first dialing 811.

State law requires that an 811 call be made before digging with power equipment. When dialing 811, callers connected to Pennsylvania 811, which notifies the appropriate utilities of an impending dig. Professional locators are then sent out to mark the site to show the location of underground utilities such as power lines.