TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 24, 2011) - Enbridge Gas Distribution and Enbridge Pipelines Inc. welcome the introduction of the co-sponsored Private Member's Bill, The Ontario One Call Act, by PC MPP Bob Bailey (Sarnia-Lambton) and NDP MPP Paul Miller (Hamilton East-Stoney Creek) to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario calling for a mandatory "One Call" before you dig system to increase public safety.
Whether you are a homeowner doing landscaping work in your yard or a contractor installing municipal infrastructure in a roadway, some Ontario jurisdictions currently require up to 13 separate calls just to locate underground infrastructure. This cumbersome process can lead to required calls for underground utility locates not being made and that can lead to a dangerous situation if damage occurs.
The Ontario Regional Common Ground Alliance (ORCGA) estimates that annual damage to underground infrastructure costs exceed $39 million, resulting in unnecessary costs to Ontarians on their utility bills and property taxes. Damages also result in lost revenue and lower productivity and efficiency for businesses of all sizes in Ontario. At a time where governments are looking for ways to reduce red tape and increase efficiencies, a mandatory "One Call" system could assist in meeting this mandate.
Currently, a voluntary "One Call" system is in place in Ontario however safe digging best practices in other jurisdictions include a mandatory system. In the U.S., where every jurisdiction has a mandatory "One Call" before you dig system, there has been a 70 per cent reduction in damages.
Enbridge is hopeful that all three parties in the Legislature will support this initiative which will improve public and worker safety across Ontario, prevent costly damages to underground infrastructure and help make Ontario an easier place to do business.
Enbridge congratulates MPP Bailey and MPP Miller for working in the spirit of collaboration and bi-partisanship to introduce legislation designed to streamline the process for individuals and businesses, save taxpayers money through damage prevention, and improve public and worker safety.
"At Enbridge the safety of the public, our employees and our contractors is our priority and mandatory "One Call" legislation will make Ontario a safer place to live and work," said Jamie Milner, Vice President, Enbridge Gas Distribution. "We ask every Ontario MPP to vote in favour of this legislation which deserves unanimous support in the legislature because improving safety is of critical importance to every Ontarian."
Enbridge is currently a member of Ontario One Call, a voluntary not-for-profit organization providing a "One Call" service for underground utility locates, and a member of the Ontario Regional Common Ground Alliance which works to promote safe digging best practices including mandatory One Call legislation.
About Enbridge Inc.
Enbridge Inc., a Canadian company, is a North American leader in delivering energy and one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations. As a transporter of energy, Enbridge Pipelines Inc. operates, in Canada and the U.S., the world's longest crude oil and liquids transportation system. The Company also has a significant and growing involvement in natural gas gathering, transmission and midstream businesses, and an increasing involvement in power transmission. As a distributor of energy, Enbridge owns and operates Enbridge Gas Distribution Inc., Canada's largest natural gas distribution company, and provides distribution services to more than 1.9 million customers in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and New York State. As a generator of energy, Enbridge has interests in close to 860 megawatts of renewable and alternative energy generating capacity and is expanding its interests in wind and solar energy, geothermal and hybrid fuel cells. Enbridge employs approximately 6,400 people, primarily in Canada and the U.S. and is ranked as one of Canada's Greenest Employers, and one of the Top 100 Companies to Work for in Canada. Enbridge's common shares trade on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol ENB. For more information visit www.enbridge.com or www.enbridgegas.com.
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