Ah, April. Not too hot, not too cold – just the right time to plant trees and shrubs, add a new fence, install a new mailbox. Or maybe even get a inground pool put in!

Can you dig it?

Turns out, that’s a very good question. And one you should ask yourself before you start digging. April is dubbed “Safe Digging Month,” but the question, of course, applies all year round.

Digging without having buried public utilities marked can result in serious injuries, utility service disruptions and costly repairs when gas, electric, communications, water and sewer lines are damaged.

Make a free call to 811 before digging to maintain essential utility service for yourself and your neighbors. Or go online to Florida’s Sunshine 811 and create a ticket. The agents will communicate your information to local utility companies. Professional locators will then visit the dig site to mark the approximate location of underground utility lines with spray paint, flags or both. Once a site has been accurately marked, it’s safe to begin digging around the marked areas.

Always call or create a ticket at least two full business days before digging, regardless of the depth or familiarity with the property. If you want to dig on Saturday, contact 811 the prior Tuesday or Wednesday.

Visit tampaelectric.com/811 to view a video and the color code for marking underground utility lines established by the American Public Works Association.