Missouri Statute 319 serves as a crucial safeguard for public safety, specifically related to the prevention of damages to underground facilities during excavation or construction activities. Violations of this statute can have severe consequences, potentially endangering lives, property, and essential infrastructure. As such, it is vital for citizens and stakeholders to actively report any suspected violations to the Missouri Attorney General's Office.
The statute requires excavators to contact Missouri 811, the state's One-Call Center, before digging to inform them of their intent to excavate. Missouri 811 then notifies all the affected public utility companies, who subsequently mark the locations of their underground facilities. This information helps excavators avoid accidental damage during their digging activities, ensuring public safety and minimizing disruptions to essential services like water, gas, electricity, and telecommunications.
When violations occur, they can lead to hazardous situations, financial liabilities, and service disruptions. Reporting such incidents to the Missouri Attorney General empowers authorities to take swift action against the responsible parties. This helps maintain accountability within the industry, setting a precedent for responsible excavation practices.
To help protect the underground facilities and to aid in reporting violations, Missouri 811 has seven violation letter templates that can be used to report violators. The templates can be downloaded here.
By reporting violations of Missouri Statute 319 to the Attorney General, citizens contribute significantly to a safer community. Their actions protect vital infrastructure, prevent service outages, and safeguard the well-being of their fellow Missourians. Remember, safety is everyone's responsibility, and timely reporting of violations ensures that Missouri remains a state that prioritizes public safety above all else.
For more information on the kinds of violations that should be reported and form letters for submission, please visit:
Missouri Attorney General’s Office
221 West High Street
Jefferson City, MO 65101