KSN/KODE— As the spring weather continues and home projects begin, it’s important to know the facts before breaking ground.

Spire Energy and Missouri 811 are celebrating Safe Digging Awareness Month. Representatives from both organizations say those three numbers are something most people don’t even know about.

“Most of our contractors, people who do regularly dig, they know about 811, but a lot of our homeowners don’t, and they don’t understand the importance of it. So, it’s really safety is a big thing for our homeowners and just to make sure they get it right,” warned Michael Fornelli, Spire Southwest Regional Manager.

“Missouri 811 is the notification center that is authorized by the Underground Damage Prevention Act. When an excavator, whether it’s a professional or a homeowner, is going to dig anywhere in Missouri, they are required by law to contact us,” said Randy Norden, Executive Director Missouri 811.

Norden says the size of the project doesn’t matter, which is a common misconception.

“That’s one of the myths about it, that utilities are buried at certain depths. Some are just a few inches deep, some are several feet deep. So you don’t know, that’s why it’s a benefit to call Missouri 811 and do that locate request, so that you do know,” he added.

Representatives say not calling 811 before you dig can cost homeowners thousands in large fines and damage to their property.

“Couple things can happen, the Office of the Attorney General could fine you for up to 10 thousand dollars, per incident, per day. And you could be held liable for the repair of the utility that you broke,” Norden added.

“We’ve had situations where people do damage lines and it’s costly to the homeowner, to whoever damaged that line. And in rare circumstances, it does save lives also, so it’s very, very important,” said Fornelli.

Norden says April is the perfect time to bring attention to digging awareness.

“Well, April kinda is the month where the excavation keys up. Everybody is getting in the right weather to do excavation work. Planting flowers, planting trees, and nationwide it’s declared as Safe Digging Awareness month,” he said.