National Grid responds to call for help to restore power in Flor - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

National Grid responds to call for help to restore power in Florida

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By Alana Cerrone

acerrone@abc6.com

@Alana_Cerrone

When a storm causes significant power outages as Irma has, utility companies call on a “mutual assistance network” of utility companies across the country.

In this case, Florida is asking for thousands of workers. 12 are responding from National Grid Rhode Island, and 50 from Massachusetts. Tuesday, this National Grid line truck will be one of 5 heading to Florida from Rhode Island, along with a supervisor truck.

The mini-convoy is responding to a call from its counterparts in Florida.

"So we're working with Duke Energy and Tampa Electric...[the workers] will go in as a group and report to Tampa Electric as an example and Tampa will say, ‘you cover this area, and then our folks will take it over from there."

National Grid is sending a total of 300 linemen, tree workers, and other personnel to Florida as the state's utility companies call for thousands of workers from across the country.

"It's the utility business. We know at any one time someone's in tough shape because of a storm with outages."

Once the crew from National Grid arrives in Florida, they'll be briefed on the specifics of Florida's utilities, but luckily, most practices are industry standard.

"This is gonna take a fair amount of time. But...utilities across the country follow the same procedures.”

The company says its workers stepped up, volunteering to do their part for what may be  one of the largest industry restoration efforts in U.S. history.

"We're willing to support as they are willing to support us because we know what it’s like to face the daunting task that they have."

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