Some crews from Iowa are already there and others are leaving today to be part of an estimated 17,000 utilities workers who are helping Florida turn the power back on after Hurricane Irma.
MidAmerican Energy spokesman Adam Jacobi says the company headquartered in Des Moines sent around 250 workers to Florida.
He says the staging area is in Lake City, Florida and Florida Power and Light is determining where to send the crews. Around 200 Iowa and Wisconsin utility workers from Alliant Energy are heading to Florida today to help out.
The storm left more than 7 million people without power at one point, and Jacobi says it’s a big job to get everything repaired.”There’s a lot of cleanup that has to happen, just restoring wires poles…so this is not going to be an easy quick-fix by any stretch of the imagination,” Jacobi says.
Crews from 30 states and Canada are in Florida or on the way to help restore the power.
Fifteen Iowa electric cooperatives have sent 46 linemen and 26 vehicles to help an electric coop in southeast Georgia restore extensive power outages caused by the hurricane. The Okefenoke Rural Electric Membership Corporation along the Florida-Georgia line reported that 95 percent of its electric system was knocked out by the storm.
Here are the Iowa Coops which sent crews to Georgia:
Access Energy (Mt. Pleasant, IA), Allamakee-Clayton Electric Cooperative (Postville, IA), Chariton Valley Electric Cooperative (Albia, IA), Clarke Electric Cooperative (Osceola, IA), Consumers Energy (Marshalltown, IA), East-Central Iowa Rural Electric Cooperative (Urbana, IA), Eastern Iowa Light & Power Cooperative (Wilton, IA), Farmers Electric Cooperative (Greenfield, IA), Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives (Urbandale, IA), Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative ( Estherville, IA), Linn County Rural Electric Cooperative (Marion, IA), Midland Power Cooperative (Jefferson, IA), Prairie Energy Cooperative (Clarion, IA), Southern Iowa Electric Cooperative (Bloomfield, IA), and T.I.P. Rural Electric Cooperative (Brooklyn, IA).
(Pat Powers, KQWC contributed to this story. Photo courtesy of the Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives.)