1,300 FPL Workers Return to Florida After Helping Rebuild Louisiana, Texas Energy Grid After Hurricane Laura
By Space Coast Daily // September 14, 2020
Installed more than 440 poles, Replaced more than 110 transformers
LOUISIANA – Florida Power & Light Company’s workforce of more than 1,300 employees and contractors recently returned to Florida after rebuilding the energy grid damaged by Hurricane Laura.
In addition to sending workers to help other utilities, FPL sent nearly 180 semi-tractor trailers to Louisiana loaded with poles and equipment to help rebuild critical parts of the transmission grid, which is essential to bringing power to communities, homes and businesses.
Crews worked 16-hour days in excessively hot and difficult conditions to restore power in Louisiana and Texas, including the Lake Charles, La. area that was hit hardest by the deadly Category 4 hurricane. FPL joined its sister company, Gulf Power, which also sent nearly 80 employees and contractors to support restoration efforts.
In addition, the FPL crews raised nearly $5,000 for the United Way of Southwest Louisiana and a local church.
“As Floridians, we know exactly what it’s like to be impacted by a hurricane,” said FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy.
“We know that restoring power to a community helps rebuild lives and gives people hope. Our men and women truly demonstrated that by helping rebuild essential parts of the energy grid and showing the people of Louisiana that they have caring hearts. I am so proud of our men and women for selflessly leaving their families for an extended period of time, including over the Labor Day holiday, and during a global pandemic to work long, grueling hours to support our fellow Americans in need during these challenging times.”
Before making the decision to send help, FPL makes sure its customers are taken care of and that no other storms are on the immediate horizon.
FPL crews assisted Entergy Louisiana and Entergy Texas by:
– Installing more than 440 poles
– Replacing more than 110 transformers
– Stringing more than 55 miles of power lines, which is almost the same distance as the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens to West Palm Beach
Providing mutual assistance after natural disasters is a hallmark of the energy industry.
In the past, FPL has provided assistance to areas impacted by major weather events, including last month’s deployment of approximately 600 FPL employees and contractors to central New Jersey after Hurricane Isaias.
In 2018, FPL crews deployed four times to assist in power restoration efforts after a natural disaster, some working six months away from home. FPL crews helped restore power in the Bayamon region of Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria; in the Carolinas, Florida’s Panhandle and Georgia in some of the hardest hit areas impacted by Hurricanes Florence and Michael; and in Northern California to areas devastated by the Camp Fire.
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