IBEW Members Respond to Hurricane Sandy
November 1, 2012
Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc across the Eastern Seaboard, from North Carolina to New England, knocking down power lines, and flooding coastal communities. Hardest hit were New York and New Jersey, leaving more than a million residents without power and many without homes.
“Devastating,” Wall, N.J., Local 1289 Business Manager Edward Stroup, III, says about Sandy.
Stroup represents workers at Jersey Central Power and Light – a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. – which provides power to more than 1 million central New Jersey residents. He says:
His linemen are working around the clock to help get tens of thousands of customers’ power back on. The company says the priority is responding to hazardous situations and fixing major infrastructure damage, like substation and transmission facilities.
Safety is both the IBEW’s and company’s top goal, he says, reporting no injuries despite the dangerous nature of the work.
Hardest hit has been the Jersey Shore, with the oceanfront communities of Atlantic City and Asbury Park overrun by flooding that tore up boardwalks and homes.
Says Atlantic City Local 210 Business Manager Charles Hill:
Hill says they’ve got everyone working to clean-up the damage, with help from IBEW linemen from across the country and inside wiremen from Folsom Local 351.
The Washington, D.C. metro-area, hit bad by last summer’s derecho storms, was largely spared the widespread damage seen in the Northeast, says Washington, D.C. Local 1900 Business Manager Jim Griffin, who represents workers at Pepco.
In fact, the local is sending a team of more than 20 workers, who specialize in underground line work, to New York City, which was hit by floods and blackouts that shut down the subway system and darkened lower Manhattan.
IBEW linemen from areas outside the storm region are also working to clean up the damage.
Paducah, Ky., Local 816 member Dustin Croley is in Massachusetts to help restore power.
Waiting out the worst of the storm on Cape Cod, he told hometown WPSD-TV:
Press Release: IBEW PRESIDENT ED HILL ON HURRICANE SANDY CLEAN UP