Three Arab Electric Cooperative employees – Chris Burgess, Kevin Shaver and Kyler Mitchell – recently spent a week near Wetumpka helping to restore power to residents affected by Hurricane Zeta.
For several days, more than 35,000 residents were without power. The AEC men worked with Central Alabama Electric Cooperative employees.
More than 300 line workers, from AEC and other co-ops and contractors, worked for more than a week to get power restored to the 10-county area that CAEC serves.
Winds clocked at more than 60 mph brought down trees, more than 500 power poles and power lines.
“This was a monumental effort by our employees and those who came to our aid,” said CAEC president Tom Stackhouse. “The level of destruction Zeta brought to our membership is unlike anything we’ve ever experienced in our 80-year history.”
With this story is a photo of a little boy wearing a mini-hardhat given to him by the Arab crew.
“Thank you Arab Electric Co-op for helping the crews in and around the Elmore County area get our power restored,” said the little boy’s grandmother. “My grandson is enjoying his work hat a couple of linemen stopped and gave him. Through the chaos they still took time to make him smile.”
The AEC crew worked for nine days, averaging 14 hours a day for a total of 116 hours each to help restore power to the Wetumpka area.
“It always amazes me when there is a need, we help each other without question,” said AEC general manager Stacey White. “That is one of the advantages to being a part of a co-op family.
“Arab Electric has been able to help our neighbors for the first time in many years and I am very proud of our employees for saying ‘yes’ when asked to help.”