Maryland Specifications & Guidelines

Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration

MDOT Standard Specifications for Construction and Materials, July 2022

809.03 Trenching and Backfilling, Construction

"Excavate trenches as specified.

In areas where conduit or cable is trenched, place a detector tape 6 in. below the finished grade. The tape shall be red and imprinted with a continuous warning message that reads 'CAUTION: ELECTRICAL LINE BURIED BELOW', repeated every 36 in. The tape shall be inductively and conductively traceable using a standard pipe and cable locating device. ..."

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921.11 Detectable Marking Tape

"A direct-burial-rated subgrade detectable marking tape between 2 in. and 12 in. in width, having a 5.0 mil overall nominal thickness. The tape shall be composed of 0.8 mil clear virgin polypropylene film, reverse printed and laminated to a 0.35 mil or 35 gauge solid aluminum foil core, and then laminated to a 3.75 mil clear virgin polyethylene film with polyethylene. Tapes using reprocessed plastics or resins are not acceptable.

921.11.01 Strength. Not less than 150 lb of tensile break strength per 6 in. width.

921.11.02 Resistance. Resistant to ink rub-off, corrosion, acids, alkalis, chemicals, oils, and other elements that may be present below grade.

921.11.03 Printing, Color, and Reflectivity. Diagonally striped design with bold, black lettering and meeting American Public Works Association (APWA) Uniform Color-Code standard for identification of buried utilities. Color codes as follows.

(a) Blue for potable water lines.
(b) Green for sanitary sewer and drain lines.
(c) Yellow for gas, oil, steam, petroleum, and gaseous material lines.
(d) Red for electric power lines, cables, conduit, and lighting cables.
(e) Orange for communication, alarm or signal lines, cables, conduits, fiber optic, and telephone lines.
(f) Purple for storm drain pipe culverts.

A continuous message shall be permanently reverse printed 1.5 in. tall bold black letters; repeated every 20 in. to 36 in. and cannot be scratched off. The tape shall be inscribed with the proper message for the applicable utility over which it is installed with warnings such as “CAUTION……LINE BURIED BELOW” and shall contain a diagram and burying instructions.

The imprint shall allow total reflectivity. Tape must be clearly and easily detectable before it can be read.

921.11.04 Detectability. Capable of being detected below grade by either conductive or inductive location techniques and locatable by standard methods typical of utility quality level B investigations."

> Open Specification Document

Code of Maryland Regulations

Title 20 Public Service Commission, Subtitle 55 Service Supplied by Gas Companies

Sec. Pipeline Location

"A. Burial. All pipelines shall be buried a minimum of 24 inches, or 18 inches in solid rock, where the term solid rock indicates the necessity for blasting or the use of pneumatic equipment.

B. Exceptions. Burial depths less than that specified but not less than 12 inches will be allowed if underground obstructions preclude those depths, if special line protection as accepted by the Commission is provided. The above requirements shall be applicable to existing pipelines within a reasonable period of time upon discovery of burial depth 12 inches or less, or of burial depths less than specified and deemed to be hazardous.

C. Identification.

(1) Tracer wire shall be installed with all plastic pipe.
(2) When the open trenching method of pipeline construction is used, suitable identification tape shall be installed at a minimum of 12 inches above the top of the pipe.

D. Location of Residential Service Lines and Meters.

(1) Residential customer meters shall be placed as close to the exterior building wall as possible.
(2) Gas service may not be provided to new or renewed service lines if there is any underground pipeline after the meter, unless the pipeline carries gas only to gas utilization equipment located outdoors.
(3) If it is not possible to comply with §D(2) of this regulation, written permission shall be obtained from the Commission before placing the meter.
(4) If a residential service line is replaced, the new service line shall be installed as provided in §D(1)-(3) of this regulation."

> Open Document

Call Before You Dig

Miss Utility

Service Area: Western Shore of Maryland

Call: 811 (Local) or 800-257-7777


Miss Utility of Delarva

Service Area: Eastern Shore of Maryland

Call: 811 (Local) or 800-441-8355


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