Local Crews Prepared for Hurricane Assistance
By WestKyStar Staff
PADUCAH, KY - As the hurricane slamming the eastern coast of the United States is being called "unprecedented" and labeled a "frankenstorm," electric crews from a number of states including Massachusetts, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Florida are being sent to assist with restoring power once the storm has past. So, what about local crews? Will they be sent to assist?
Both Andrea Underwood of Paducah Power, and Izell White of Jackson Purchase Electric Cooperative, say no calls for assistance have come in yet, but crews are preparing, should that happen.
Underwood said that working as part of an electrical crew is much like working for the fire department in that, "...you may have to leave at a moment's notice," adding that crew members may only have time to "pack a bag and go." She said that leaders at Paducah Power assess the situation locally to ensure that sending a crew elsewhere would not jeopardize services at home.
Paducah Power is part of a group of municipalities across the country that pool their work resources when necessary. Underwood says their team assists whenever possible because "you never know" when you'll need help, pointing to the ice storm of 2009.
Meanwhile, Izell White of Jackson Purchase Electric Cooperative says they are "mindful and watchful" of the weather situation on the east coast, and are prepared should a request for assistance come in. White says their team is paying particular attention to eastern Kentucky, as the storm is expected to affect residents there, and crews may be called to assist.
Jackson Purchase Electric Cooperative is part of a mutual aid group which is coordinated through the Kentucky Associaton of Electric Cooperatives in Louisville.