Did someone say, “free ice cream”? Westfield Gas + Electric’s ‘Shovels for Scoops’ program offers residents a chance at just that!

We’re scattering miniature shovels with a Call 811 safety message around town this summer. If you find one, you can redeem it for a free scoop of your favorite frozen treat at one of two local ice cream shops!

“The shovels are a fun way to bring the community together and spread the 811 message”, Denise Machado, WG+E Manager of Regulatory Compliance, stated.  “Calling 811 at least 72-hours before you start a digging project is the best way to have underground utilities marked out so that you can avoid hitting them. It’s simple and it’s free. Just like our ice cream!”

Outdoor projects like planting trees or bushes, installing a fence, light post or mailbox, building a deck or patio, installing a pool, etc., are exactly the types of projects that require a call to 811. Calls are then routed to a one-call center that alerts local utility companies of the proposed dig site. Technicians from these companies will mark-out the service lines for gas, electric, communication, etc. with flags and/or paint so that homeowners can “see” where the buried lines are located. Once the lines are marked and 72-hours have expired, the project can begin.

“Striking a single line can cause serious injury or death, disrupt service to entire neighborhoods, and potentially result in costly fines and repair costs, so it’s really important to raise the level of 811 awareness within our community”, Machado went on to say. “The tagged shovels help us do so in a fun and exciting way.”

Shovels For Scoops will continue throughout the summer months, and shovels can be redeemed for a free scoop of ice cream through September 30th at Northside Creamery (Southampton Rd.) and Mr. Whipy’s Golf Acres (Union St.) Hints to the locations where shovels will appear can be found on WG+E social media pages: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to see when the next drop of shovels will be. Then go find one and dig in!  To ice cream…not a buried utility. Wink, wink.