Digging Into Safety: The Must-Do Before Your Outdoor Projects

Mar 26, 2024 3:09:29 PM | News Digging Into Safety: The Must-Do Before Your Outdoor Projects

Before breaking ground, contacting Missouri 811 should be at the top of your to-do list.

Spring is in the air, and you're probably already itching to start those outdoor home improvement projects you've dreamed about all winter. Whether you're planning a majestic flower bed, a new walkway, or that perfect front porch for warm summer evenings, there's an essential first step that's easy to overlook but critical for your safety and wallet, contacting 811 before you dig.

Before breaking ground, contacting Missouri 811 should be at the top of your to-do list.
Why, you ask?

Hidden Dangers Below

Beneath our feet lies a hidden network of utilities—electric, gas, water, sewer, and even communication lines—that make our modern lives possible. Accidentally hitting any of these can lead to service disruptions, costly repairs, and, most importantly, serious injuries or even fatalities. Imagine turning your peaceful flower bed project into a scene of chaos just because you didn't make a quick call. Not exactly the weekend project you had in mind, right?

different utilities

Missouri 811: Your Safety Call

Contacting 811 is more than just a recommendation; it's a crucial step for your safety, and it’s the law. When you reach out to Missouri 811, you're essentially giving utility companies a heads-up about your plans. They will then send out professionals to mark the locations of public underground utilities on your property, free of charge. These markings act as a map, guiding you about where it's safe to dig and where it's not.


Plan Ahead

One thing to note is that utility companies need a bit of time to do their part. Contact Missouri 811 at least 3 working days before you dig to allow time to have your property marked. So, planning ahead is key. Don't let impatience lead to a weekend filled with regrets. A little patience can ensure your project goes off without a hitch.

plan ahead

Avoiding Unnecessary Costs

Striking a utility line can be a costly mistake. Beyond the potential safety hazards, repairing damaged lines can hit your wallet hard. Not to mention, you might be liable for the cost of repairs and any service disruptions caused. A locate request from 811 can save you from an unexpected and unwelcome project expense.

hit line

It’s the Law

Beyond being a wise safety measure, contacting 811 before digging is actually the law. This requirement is in place to protect you and your community from the dangers of unintentionally hitting underground utilities. Compliance is not just about following rules; it's about ensuring that your project doesn't turn into a liability or a public safety issue.


A Simple Process

So, what does the process look like? It's simple:

  • Contact Missouri 811 three working days before you plan to start your project.
  • Missouri 811 notifies utilities.
  • Utility companies mark your property.
  • Confirm the markings.
  • Dig with care.

With these easy steps, you can ensure that your outdoor projects are both exciting and safe.

As you plan your spring and summer projects, remember that safety and preparation go hand in hand. Contacting Missouri 811 is a small step that plays a big role in preventing harm to you, your family, and your community.

So, as you dust off your gardening tools and sketch out your front porch dreams, add "Contact 811" to your project checklist. It’s a call that speaks volumes about your commitment to safety and responsibility. Plus, it sets the stage for a successful project that's all about enjoying the great outdoors, rather than dealing with unexpected and unpleasant surprises.

Happy digging, Missouri! Let’s make this outdoor project season the safest one yet!

Missouri 811

Written By: Missouri 811