Home News Local News Xcel Energy answers call to help with Florida power restoration

Xcel Energy answers call to help with Florida power restoration

Submitted Xcel Energy crews from Texas and New Mexico depart from Amarillo, Texas, early Sunday morning en route to Tampa, Florida, where Hurricane Irma has knocked out power for thousands of customers.

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

AMARILLO, Texas — Xcel Energy is sending approximately 200 employees from around its eight-state service area to assist with power restoration efforts in Florida after Hurricane Irma passes through, including 36 employees from Texas and New Mexico communities.

Xcel Energy is part of the Edison Electric Institute’s Mutual Assistance program, which compiles a database of resources utility companies provide during large outage events such as natural disasters. The company already has been on standby to offer line crews for outside assistance since Hurricane Harvey affected large areas of Texas and Louisiana two weeks ago, but did not receive a call for help after that event. Today, however, Xcel Energy received a formal request to assist in the Tampa, Florida, area, which is expected to be severely impacted by Hurricane Irma. Crews from Xcel Energy’s operations in Colorado and the Upper Midwest also will be deployed.
Xcel Energy personnel who are taking part in the Florida effort have already indicated a willingness to help, and Texas and New Mexico crews have been notified to drive to Amarillo today so they can start the first leg of the trip to Florida at 7:30 a.m. Sunday. The employees will leave from the Amarillo Technical Center at 7801 E. Interstate 40 and travel for 16 hours before resting for the night. The area crews have been asked to pack for a two-week deployment.

“We know if we were affected by a natural disaster, other utilities would help us, and they have many times in the past,” said David Hudson, president, Xcel Energy – New Mexico, Texas. “We have some of the best line workers in the nation, and we’re honored to play a role in helping our neighbors, even if they live more than one thousand miles away.”
The Texas-New Mexico team will be comprised of Xcel Energy employees based in Amarillo, Borger, Hereford, Levelland, Littlefield, Lubbock and Plainview in Texas; and Clovis and Roswell in New Mexico. This group includes line workers, mechanics, supervisors and a safety consultant. They will work under the direction of the local utility serving Tampa.
“The safety of our workers and of the public in need of their services is our top priority,” Hudson said. “Our employees will do an outstanding job and they will come home safely to their families, who also are sacrificing during this time.”


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