Local utility crews helping to restore power on East Coast

November 05, 2012

SRP and APS crews on the East Coast are working steadily toward restoring power to homes, schools, and businesses, while preparing for another storm to move into the area.

The Arizona Air National Guard flew Salt River Project and Arizona Public Service crews and trucks to areas hit by Hurricane Sandy on Friday, and they’ve been at work since they landed repairing a badly damaged electrical system. APS sent 17 trucks and 33 linemen.

Spokesman Steven Gotfried is embedded with a line crew near Stony Brook, on Long Island. He says the families they’ve met have been without any power for a week.

“They’ve been eating a lot of cans of ravioli. They’ve been lighting fires to keep warm. They were very appreciative to see us, and specifically when we told them where we were from, it was like a 'wow' factor," Gotfried said. "And then the next question is, ‘How did you guys get out here?’ We explained that the National Guard brought our trucks by plane, and they thought that was really cool.”

He said when they first arrived they were put in a staging area with workers from around the country, and beyond.

“To our left was someone from Michigan, to our right was someone from Wisconsin, down a few rows was guys from California, Florida," Gotfried said. "Probably the most interesting group was about 150 French Canadians [from Quebec] with only five speaking English."

Crews are now preparing to weather a nor’easter that may hit the same area that took a beating from Sandy last week.

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