Second Trip to Fairhope Marks Fourth Mutual Aid Response in Two Months
ORLANDO – OUC—The Reliable One is sending a power restoration team to Fairhope, Ala, for the second time in a month to aid the city’s municipal utility. An OUC crew left Orlando just before 5 p.m. today as Hurricane Zeta, a Category 2 storm, neared the Louisiana-Alabama coastline. This deployment marks an unprecedented fourth mutual aid trip in just two months.
In each previous deployment, OUC sent 12 employees eager to help others in need. The most recent came Oct. 9 when Hurricane Delta hit an already battered southwest Louisiana. Two days later, OUC line crews began restoring power to the residents of Lafayette, La. They returned home Oct. 17.
Delta made landfall near the same area Hurricane Laura tore through on Aug. 27. OUC’s first deployment of the hyperactive hurricane season lasted 14 days as that team worked in the cities of Alexandria and Winnfield.
Between the trips to Louisiana, OUC, on Sept. 16, sent another 12-member contingent to Fairhope, Ala., to repair the city’s grid after Hurricane Sally knocked out power to 22,000 residents. In 2017, a line crew from Fairhope’s small utility traveled to Orlando to help OUC recover from Hurricane Irma.
In keeping with OUC’s COVID-19 precautions, field crews observe social distancing and practice enhanced safety and sanitization protocols.
The current power restoration team include Line Supervisor Choice Ryon and Line Technicians Brian Barnett, Justin Restituyo, Austin Nettles and Justin Stanley. Six other employees remain on standby to possibly leave October 29. Several members of this crew have assisted in the previous mutual aid efforts.
About OUC—The Reliable One
Established in 1923 by a special act of the Florida Legislature, OUC—The Reliable One is the second largest municipal utility in Florida. OUC provides electric and water services to about 400,000 accounts in Orlando, St. Cloud and parts of unincorporated Orange and Osceola counties. Visit www.ouc.com to learn more about our commitment to reliability, affordability and sustainability.