Update on Relief Crews Working in Louisiana

Linemen from HOEC working to assist storm-ravaged Louisiana will get a well-earned break when fresh help arrives. On August 29th, 8 linemen from HOEC along with other linemen from the state of Missouri left home to help restore power in the wake of Hurricane Laura. They have been working at Beauregard Electric Cooperative, which serves 42,000 members in an area just to the north of where the storm made landfall.

Since that time the crews have been part of a huge mobilization of assistance for Louisiana’s electric cooperatives. At Beauregard Electric alone, more than a thousand additional line workers and their equipment have been working long hours to restore power.

“The crews are making progress,” says Dan Singletary, CEO/General Manager at HOEC. “There is a total of 640 cooperative linemen working. Including contractors there are 1,180 people working to restore power.”

Even with the progress that has already been made, officials with Beauregard Electric Cooperative say that members are still looking at four to six weeks before power is completely restored.

Eight more linemen from HOEC are making the journey to relieve the linemen that left on August 29th. These linemen have been working in 90 degree heat with near 100 percent humidity. The task has been made more difficult by the need to maintain social distancing between crews. Every step possible has been taken to protect them from COVID-19.

In sending assistance to Louisiana, HOEC is returning the favor from those electric cooperatives that sent assistance during the 2009 ice storm. It also fulfills one of the seven cooperative principles – Cooperation among Cooperatives – under which cooperatives operate.

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