Disaster Response and Mutual Aid

Public Power Utility Crews Deploy to Help with Florida Power Restoration Efforts

Crews from public power utilities on Nov. 9 traveled to various locations in Florida prior to the arrival of Tropical Storm Nicole, which is expected to turn into a hurricane.

Amy Zubaly, Executive Director of the Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA), on Nov. 8 said that FMEA and its members were closely watching and monitoring Nicole.

Florida public power utility Keys Energy Services (KEYS) on Nov. 9 said it had mobilized six linemen to assist with post-Hurricane Nicole power restoration efforts in Ft. Pierce, Florida.

KEYS’ crew will assist personnel from other regional utilities and contractors with regional power restoration in the aftermath of the storm.

KEYS’ linemen, along with three bucket trucks, one digger truck, one material trailer, and one utility pole trailer, departed for Ft. Pierce on Wednesday, November 9, and will be pre-staged to begin assisting with power restoration once the storm has passed.

“Our crew is looking forward to lending their unique hurricane restoration experience to Fort Pierce Utilities Authority, a fellow public power utility,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO.

Also on Nov. 9, Louisiana public power utility Lafayette Utilities System (LUS) reported that LUS line crews headed out early that morning to travel to Tallahassee, Fla., a public power city, ahead of Tropical Storm Nicole. “LUS crews will ride out the storm with the Tallahassee crews and will assist in restoration once weather conditions are safe,” LUS said in a tweet.

Meanwhile, crews from Alabama public power utility on Nov. 9 headed out for Ocala, Fla., to arrive in advance of Nicole and be ready to work as soon as weather permits.

Another Alabama public power utility, Riviera Utilities, reported that 14 of its linemen and two engineering technicians on Nov. 9 departed for Gainesville, Fla., a public power city. “Our mutual aid crews will be on-site and ready to help once Nicole makes landfall,” Riviera Utilities said.

“Tropical Storm Nicole continued to strengthen as it swirled across the western Atlantic from Tuesday to Wednesday, and AccuWeather meteorologists said the massive storm will make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane along Florida’s east coast early Thursday morning,” AccuWeather reported on Nov. 9.