Have you ever passed a bunch of brightly colored spray paint scribbled in the road, or on a sidewalk, and wondered what they mean? These florescent hieroglyphics actually represent some really important information.

Markings on streets, sidewalks, and on soil are generally placed there because of upcoming work. Sometimes its for new construction, sometimes its for repairs, but no matter how big or small a project may be, marking it is extremely important.

The importance comes from what is buried below us. Just like most of the United States, Louisiana has thousands of miles of underground gas lines, electrical lines, telecommunication lines, and water lines. Because of how dangerous these can be to those doing the work, and for those around them, marking these utilities are extremely important.

The importance is recognized nationally, which is why the American Public Works Association created a universal code for paint colors to mark these. The color coding is used from New York to California, from Michigan to Louisiana. This is important for everyone involved. If a utility or construction worker travels from one state to another for work, having the same uniform code keeps them, and those around them safe. Additionally, residents have to mark their property when they are personally doing a project that involves any kind of digging. So if you just moved to Louisiana and want to install a fence, you would have to call 811 and have your property marked. The color coding of those marks would be the same as the markings from whatever state you just relocated from.

Check out the color coding below:

Why Do Utility Markings Have Different Paint Colors?

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