In This Issue

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Spanish Up 

The Spanish calls just keep coming. From January through September, we're showing a 56% increase over 2014.   The Spanish Initiative is beginning to roll!
Our Spanish Facebook page now has 361 likes as of October 5.
English Facebook has over 4,000 likes as of October 5.
America's number one plumbing franchiser, Roto-Rooter, has been working with us on getting damage prevention out to their franchisers and service staff.
We spotted a couple of trucks out working in the Dallas area - and took a picture!
You can see the Texas811 bumper sticker at the bottom of the Roto-Rooter truck.  
The Portal
Important Links


We are exploring new ways to get the 811 safety message out among our 1500 plus members' customers, and one way is putting our message on the return payment envelopes, or email statements they send out to customers.


New Swag'n

The original Swag'n was damaged beyond repair in a break in late this summer. However, help is on the way. Wagon Hoss Rick Pollard is coming back better than before! The new Swag'n is the same size as its predecessor - 16 feet long - but has a 36" grill instead of a 24", allowing for more burgers and hot dogs to feed the always hungry and appreciative Swag'n crowds!
September 2015 Newsletter
Mike's Message
It's October - October 7th, actually - and I'm happy to bring you our newsletter recap for the month of September.
Our biggest news is that we've broken the 1500 membership number!   We edged over that mark on October 1st.
We also held, in conjunction with the Damage Prevention Councils of Texas and a multitude of corporate sponsors, the 2nd Annual Eagle Ford Safety & Equipment Rodeo Roundup.   Normally we would recap this October event in our November newsletter, but it's just too big to not touch on now!
We're also batting about some new initiatives to bring the 811 story to more people than ever before, and you'll see one of them in this newsletter.
Our Communications Department has put together some of the highlights, and we hope you'll enjoy reading about them next.
Safe Digging!

Mike Losawyer
President, Texas811
  The Big Show

The 2nd annual Eagle Ford Shale Safety and Equipment Rodeo Roundup is history. Over 600 people attended the mega-event in Pearsall, Texas on October 2nd. Texas811, Williams, Safety Wrap and the Damage Prevention Council of Texas were among the two dozen corporate sponsors of the event.
Visitors came from across South Texas, including utility/pipeline personnel and municipal and county emergency officials. There was oil field and safety equipment on display, and excavator operators competed to see who is the best in the west in the fun-filled backhoe rodeo.  

And there was food - Dirt Road Cookers
was there with their giant wood fired pizza oven on wheels, there was barbecue, there were Texas811 snow cones - no one went away hungry from this event! Even our Texas811 mascot, Digby, was impressed with the giant pizza pie!
But the highlight of the day was a sobering demonstration in safety.   A mock gas line hit was set up by Williams.  The scenario started off with a line marking, showing a raw natural gas line being marked near a distribution wellhead.  The line apparently was quite near another utility line, and the excavator called in a hydro-vac service.   Unfortunately, the contractor in charge saw this as a waste of time, ordered the hydro-vac away from the scene, and told the excavator in no uncertain terms to get busy.
So - the backhoe was started - and in only a couple of minutes, a gas line was struck.
Compressed air provided the "gas" in this instance, spewing up out of the strike.   And there was something else to consider.  While the end consumer product of natural gas is composed almost entirely of methan
e, the original raw product as it comes out of the ground has many mixtures of trace compounds and gases as well as oil and water which must be removed prior to use.   It is not unusual for raw natural gas to contain helium, nitrogen, carbon dioxide and water vapor.  Raw gas can also contain hydrogen sulfide, or H2S.  According to OSHA, hydrogen sulfide gas causes a "wide variety of health effects.  The effects depend on how much hydrogen sulfide you breathe, and for how long.  Exposure to very high concentrations can quickly lead to death."
For the scenario, the backhoe operator was quickly overcome by H2S and collapsed next to his machine. His partner, standing a safe distance away, quickly c alled 911.
Because of the danger of the H2S, firefighte rs had to suit up in special hazmat suits and do a perimeter check before they could even consider approaching the downed worker.
And unfortunately, once they were able to remove him to the EMS unit, he had passed away.  A justice of the peace signed a death certificate, and a hearse arrived to carry the body from the scene - as his grief-stricken wife watched in horror.
All because shortcuts were made in excavation safety.   Was the cost worth it for NOT using the hydro-vac truck to discern the location of the pipes in such close proximity to each other?  It's a question the contractor in charge will be asking himself for the rest of his life.   As we head into the holiday season, Texas811 asks EVERYONE to please be careful and don't take unnecessary risks!

Homeowner Portal 
The Texas811 Homeowner Portal continues to grow!   September usage was 1128, up from August's total of 1072.
The Texas811 Homeowner Portal is located here:

Homeowners can now fill out the request form online with an easy-to-use question/answer format. Like the rest of Texas811's services, it's available 24/7/365.   The Homeowner Portal improves safety and damage prevention as its "ease-of-use" encourages more homeowners to participate in the 811 program.

 Lauren's Reminder
Texas811's Image Coordinator Lauren Losawyer, a champion archer, took to a boat to shoot an upcoming episode of "Hunting in the Sticks" on bow fishing.
Lauren began archery at the age of five in the Indian Princesses organization. She got into competition shooting in 2009, winning 2nd place in the women's compound division for the Deerman's T.H.E. 3D World Championship.
The show is about bow fishing for gar and alligator gar in the Frio River and Choke Canyon Lake.
It will air November 4, 6, 8- Wednesday 9am, Friday 1:30pm and Sunday 2pm on the Pursuit channel
That puts a wrap on this month's newsletter. If you've got an event coming up that we should give a shout out for, send an email.

Until next time, dig safe!