Monday, May 2, 2011

Underrated Relief: The Electric Company

Power worker in Alabama works to restore electric service after last week's twister. (Birmingham News)

Before we leave the subject of tornadoes for the moment, I want to take this occasion to do a quick shout out to the electric utility companies. In 2002, Kansas City experienced a terrible ice storm, with at least one to two inches of ice accumulation. Needless to say, the electric service went out, due to ice on the lines and trees falling on lines. We were out for three days. On the morning of the third day, on our street was a forest green cherry picker truck. Now, every utility that serves this area has white trucks. When I and my neighbors went over to investigate, we found the crew to be from Houston, TX. After three February days without electricity needless to say we were happy to see them. They got to work and had most of us restored by evening. The one thing I remember was that they were happy to do it--to take the time to come up and do the work. Yes, they were getting paid, but they were away from family and hometown and the weather was still not the best--in spite of those things, they volunteered for the duty.

It happened again for Katrina recovery--I remember the convoy of KCP&L trucks that went down there as soon as it was considered safe to do so--just a day or two after the storm. Just a few weeks ago KCP&L went over to St. Louis area to help with their damage. Here's the company's press release about the ways they have and are planning to help in storm damaged regions. I think this is a really cool thing, the way these companies help each other, and by extension, us too. A big salute to all--be safe out there while you work!

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