Sept. 12, 2017 – Crews from 19 of Alabama’s rural electric cooperatives are being sent to help five Florida electric cooperatives with power restoration in the wake of Hurricane Irma. A total of 210 men are on their way to help their fellow cooperatives in areas affected by the hurricane which left more than 75 percent of Floridians without electricity.
Alabama’s crews are part of a nationwide effort by 2,000 electric cooperative crews mobilized to restore power to an estimated 1 million members left in the dark as Hurricane Irma left a path of destruction through the Southeast.
Confronting the aftermath of high winds and heavy rain, mutual aid linemen from more than 25 states were working at co-ops in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. In some spots, full restoration could take weeks, officials warned.
“Alabama’s cooperatives are always willing to help our fellow cooperatives when there is a need,” said Fred Braswell, president and CEO of the Alabama Rural Electric Association, which represents Alabama’s 22 electric cooperatives.
Alabama’s 22 rural electric cooperatives deliver power to more than 1 million people, or a quarter of the state’s population, and they maintain more than 71,000 miles of power line.