On Tuesday night the Forney City Council presented Atmos Energy mascot “Gus the Gopher” with an Official Proclamation in recognition of National Safe Digging Month, after which representatives from the energy company graciously donated a natural gas detection tool to the Forney Fire Department.
Joined by Atmos Energy officials alongside the company’s official mascot Gus the Gopher, Mayor Rick Wilson read “Whereas over forty percent of hazardous leaks are caused by excavation damage to natural gas distribution systems.
Accidental damage is a great risk to underground utilities and minor damage such as a scrap, dent or crease in a pipeline or its coating can weaken the pipeline and lead to future leaks.”
Wilson read “And whereas Atmos Energy and the Common Ground Alliance urge contractors, landscapers, homeowners and the public call 811 before any digging starts, as is required by law. And whereas, through education of self-digging practices, excavators and homeowners can save time, money and keep our nation safe and connected by making a simple call to 811 in advance of any digging project.”
After accepting the proclamation and posing for commutative photographs, Atmos Energy Manager of Public Affairs Eva Hummel briefly addressed the crowd before the Forney Fire Department was presented with a gift.
Eva Hummel said “I just want to thank the City of Forney for delivering this Proclamation on a very important safety message for National Safe Diggin Month. We also have a special presentation because we really value the partnerships we have here in Forney. And we have a great one with the Forney Fire Department and we have a donation we would like to present to the Forney Fire Department.”
Stepping forward to explain the donated item, Atmos Energy Operations Supervisor for the Forney plant Blake Parker said “We are very grateful for the relationship we have with the City of Forney and especially with the Forney Fire Department. About this time last year we had the opportunity to do some natural gas first responder training with the fire department here in Forney and it was a great deal because we got to build a good relationship with the City of Forney.”
Parker said “We were able to answer some of their questions and they we able to answer some of our questions. Pretty much natural gas safety goes hand-and-hand with the fire department. So during that training one of the things we go over is the equipment we use to detect natural gas.”
Explaining how the tool is used, Blake Parker said “And this right here, this Scenta Gold, it’s an important tool that our technicians use on a daily basis. It allows them to detect gas, to pinpoint gas leaks, to take gas and air readings, it allows them to check oxygen levels and also check for carbon dioxide. So we’re here to donate it to the Forney Fire Department because we know it will be a useful tool for them just like it is for us."
Written by: Denise Bell