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North Dakota Century Code Title 49. Public Utilities § 49-23-01. Definitions

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As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

1. “Abandoned” means no longer in service and physically disconnected from a portion of the facility or from any other facility that is in use or still carries services.

2. “Board” means the board of directors of the nonprofit corporation governing the notification center under section 49-23-03.

3. “Careful and prudent manner” means:

a. Manually excavating within twenty-four inches [60.96 centimeters] of the outer edges of any underground facility on a horizontal plane as located and marked by the owner or operator;  and

b. Supporting and protecting the uncovered facility.

4. “Damage” means:

a. Substantial weakening of structural or lateral support of an underground facility;

b. Penetration, impairment, or destruction of any underground protective coating, housing, or other protective device;  or

c. Impact with or the partial or complete severance of an underground facility to the extent that the facility operator determines that repairs are required.

5. “Emergency” means a sudden, unexpected occurrence, involving a clear and imminent danger, and demanding immediate action to prevent or mitigate loss of, or damage to, life, health, property, or essential public services.

6. “Emergency responder” means a fire department, a law enforcement officer, or other emergency rescue service.

7. “Excavation” means any operation in which earth, rock, or other materials in or below the ground is moved or otherwise displaced by means of hand or power tools, power equipment, or explosives and includes grading, trenching, digging, ditching, drilling, augering, tunneling, boring, scraping, and cable or pipe plowing and driving.  The term does not include:

a. Opening a grave in a cemetery.

b. Plowing, cultivating, planting, harvesting, and similar operations in connection with agricultural activities, unless any of these activities disturbs the soil to a depth of eighteen inches [45.72 centimeters] or more.

c. Gardening and landscaping unless it disturbs the soil to a depth of twelve inches [30.48 centimeters] or more.

d. Normal maintenance of roads and streets if the maintenance does not change the original grade and does not involve the road ditch.

e. Normal repair and maintenance of track and track bed by a railroad on its own right of way.

8. “Excavator” means a person who conducts excavation.

9. “Holiday” means New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, Presidents' Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans' Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.  When a holiday falls on a Saturday, it is observed on the preceding Friday as if the Friday were the actual holiday, and when a holiday falls on a Sunday, it is observed on the following Monday as if the Monday were the actual holiday.

10. “Local governmental unit” means a county, township, or city.

11. “Locate” means an operator's markings of an underground facility showing the approximate horizontal location, including all lines, line direction, intersections, tees, and lateral facilities.

12. “Locate period” means the later of:

a. The forty-eight hour period beginning at 12:01 a.m. of the day after the location request was submitted to the notification center;  excluding any Saturday, Sunday, or holiday;  and any twenty-four hour extension provided through the notification center;  or

b. The period between the submission of a location request to the notification center and the noted date and time of excavation.

13. “Nonprofit corporation” means a corporation established under chapter 10-33.

14. “Notification center” means a center that receives notice from an excavator of planned excavation or any other request for location and transmits this notice to a participating operator.

15. “Operator” means a person who owns or operates an underground facility, including a master meter operator with underground facilities, or a state or local governmental entity.  The department of transportation is considered an operator for the department's facilities buried on the department's rights of way.  A person is not considered an operator solely because the person is an owner or tenant of real property where underground facilities are located if the underground facilities are used exclusively to furnish services or commodities on that property.

16. “Positive response” means notification by the operator to the notification center that underground facilities within the area covered by a location request have been marked or cleared.

17. “Tangible marking materials” means any material perceptible by touch used to mark the location of an underground facility, including flags, stakes, poles, or other materials inserted into or affixed to the ground.  The term does not include paint, chalk, or other liquid ink-based materials applied to the ground.

18. “Underground facility” means an underground line, pipeline, cable, facility, system, and its appurtenances used to produce, store, convey, gather, transmit, or distribute communications, data, electricity, power, television signals, heat, gas, oil, petroleum products, carbon dioxide, water, steam, sewage, hazardous liquids, and other similar substances.  Privately owned and operated underground facilities which do not extend beyond the boundary of the private property are excluded.

19. “Unexpected occurrence” includes a fire, flood, earthquake or other soil or geologic movement, riot, accident, damage to a subsurface installation requiring immediate repair, or sabotage.

20. “Water” includes potable water, wastewater, and storm water.

Cite this article: - North Dakota Century Code Title 49. Public Utilities § 49-23-01. Definitions - last updated January 01, 2020 |

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