Whether you're an individual or a contractor, if you plan to do an outdoor project that requires some digging, you'll first need to call to find out where gas and other lines are located. Some states provide a one-stop system, where all utility providers are notified after a call, and they come out within two business days to mark lines with flags.
In Missouri, you can call 800-DIG-RITE. Or, you can just dial 811 and you will automatically be connected to the local one-call system for your area. This three-digit, federally-mandated number is sponsored in part by the Common Ground Alliance.
Services like these are free - and it's the law to call before you dig. Remember to give your utility companies up to two working days to mark those lines.
Curious what the flags or painted lines stand for?
The Missouri One-Call System has a handy graphic to help you figure out what all those colored lines on your property are about.
Buried lines are typically within 24 inches of either side of flags or lines. Make sure you or youth playing in the area don't remove the flags. If you think they've been moved or removed, call again and have the area surveyed once more. Buried lines that you own won't be marked by crews. For more on customer-owned buried pipes, click here.