OUC Crews Remain Helping Restore Power in Tallahassee
11 OUC Linemen Working 16-Hour Days
ORLANDO - Right now, eleven OUC linemen are continuing to restore power to the state’s capital city after Hurricane Hermine tore down more than 1,000 trees knocking out power to more than 70,000 Tallahassee customers – or about 80 percent of them. Shortly after the hurricane made landfall in the Florida Panhandle, the Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA) activated its mutual aid system. OUC, which is part of FMEA, immediately jumped into action. A convoy of nine trucks, fully-loaded with electric repair supplies, left Orlando Friday, September 2 and got to work upon arrival.
The OUC crews have been working 16 hour days and are all safe.
OUC line techs Chris A. Hosier, Roger McBride, Charles Wincey, Austin Nettles, Bodie Adkinson, Dewey Harvey, Jason Reynolds, Jeff Cockcroft, Damon Adkinson (Bodie’s son), Steven Ramos and Line Supervisor Spencer Barnes do have hotel rooms for the brief time when they are able to sleep. Barnes reports that most of the work has been done in residential areas.
“The amount of very large trees down has been the biggest obstacle. Our two crews are working alongside Tallahassee and we will remain here as long as the need us,” Barnes said. OUC has two, five-man crews and has been all over the area in the past week. As of this morning, 97 percent of Tallahassee’s customers have been restored. Much of the remaining customers are part of a very large number of incidents affecting a handful of customers each, which means the work left continues to be labor-intensive.
Tallahassee residents have been overwhelmingly appreciative of the response. “They have been very good to us and realize we are doing everything we can to help,” Barnes said. Many residents flocked to social media to express their appreciation. A local homeowner’s association director sent an email to Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer: “A huge THANK YOU to the Orlando Utilities crews. We now have electricity for the first time in FIVE DAYS! These men were very professional, pleasant and proficient. They had great empathy for our situation and helped us understand what needed to be done. They also gave us a timeline for the expected return of power. We wanted the City of Orlando to know how much we appreciate OUC’s efforts here in Tallahassee.”
Convoy of 11 Employees and Nine Trucks Left at 9 a.m.
ORLANDO – With Hurricane Hermine having hit landfall in the Florida Panhandle this morning, the Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA) has activated its mutual aid system. OUC, which is part of FMEA, immediately jumped into action.
Eleven OUC line technicians in nine trucks, fully-loaded with electric repair supplies, left Orlando at 9 a.m. this morning. They are heading to Tallahassee, which at one point had as many as 70,000 power outages.
Fortunately, the Orlando service area was spared the brunt of the hurricane. There were only limited, smaller outages associated with the storm. OUC is fortunate to have a very talented team of line technicians who are used to dealing with Central Florida’s difficult, severe weather.
Please see the photo below of OUC’s team that left this morning. From left to right: Chris Hosier, Roger McBride, Charles Wincey, Austin Nettles, Bodie Adkinson, Dewey Harvey, Jason Reynolds, Jeff Cockcroft, Damon Adkinson (son of Bodie), Steven Ramos, and Line Supervisor Spencer Barnes.
OUC still has plenty of resources in Orlando to deal with any severe weather situation when these crews are gone. Although, it is unclear how long they will be needed, it will probably be several days.
For important storm preparation and recovery information, customers are encouraged to visit OUC’s online Storm Center at www.ouc.com/stormcenter. About OUC—The Reliable One
Established in 1923 by a special act of the Florida Legislature, OUC—The Reliable One is the second largest municipal utility in Florida. OUC provides electric and water services to more than 240,000 customers in Orlando, St. Cloud and parts of unincorporated Orange and Osceola counties. Visit www.ouc.com to learn more about our commitment to reliability, affordability and sustainability.