Local emergency response crews aid Louisiana hurricane response
CARTHAGE, Mo. – Emergency response crews from all over the country are headed to Louisiana and Mississippi to aid recovery efforts following the devastation of Hurricane Ida. According to Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, around 25 thousand linemen from 22 different states are working to restore power to more than a million residents in areas impacted by the storm. That includes crews from the four-state area.
“All we had to do was tell them that we had received a request, and we immediately had volunteers,” says Cassandra Ludwig with Carthage Water and Electric.
A four-man crew from Carthage Water and Electric left Saturday to make the more than 500-mile journey to Alexandria, Louisiana. On Monday, CWEP Linemen, Jeff Moore, Chris Perry, Chance Adams & Justin Ralston were diverted to Natchez, Mississippi to help restoration efforts there.
“They have about 50 percent, just under, of their customers are without power right now. So there’s quite a bit of work to be done,” says Ludwig.
Lineworker crews from Higginsville, Independence, Lebanon, Nixa, Palmyra, and Poplar Bluff, Missouri are also in Mississippi.
20 Lineman, vegetation management personnel and police from Grand River Dam Authority, as well as personnel from other departments in Oklahoma, also left for Louisiana on Saturday.
“So far things seem to be going well,” says Justin Alberty with Grand River Dam Authority. “Our guys are well trained and have been in this sort of incident before. So, they know what to expect.”
The response by the crews in Missouri and Oklahoma are lending a hand as part of a nationwide American Public Power mutual aid effort.
“It not us telling them they need to go. It’s them saying, ‘We are ready to help. Send us down there. Let us go,'” says Ludwig.
They talk about an Oklahoma standard. And I think these guys uphold that pretty well when they go into a situation like this to help however they need to. So our objective is just to help our neighbors and to do it as quickly and safely as possible.”
According to Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt, more than 150 Oklahoma responders are in Louisiana to help with recovery. Those agencies are:
- Creek Nation Emergency Management
- Mayes County Emergency Management
- Grand River Dam Authority
- Quapaw Tribe Emergency Management
- Craig County Emergency Management
- Washington County Emergency Management
- Pittsburg County Emergency Management
- Coal County Emergency Management
- Bryan County Emergency Management
- Wagoner County Emergency Management
- Broken Arrow Fire
- Bethany Fire
- Edmond Fire
- Oklahoma City Fire
- Norman Fire
- Owasso Fire
- Sand Springs Fire
- Tulsa Fire
- Verdigris Fire
- Oklahoma City Police
- Tulsa Police
- Oklahoma Highway Patrol
- Oklahoma State Department of Health
How you can help
The American Red Cross currently has more than 350 trained volunteers responding in states impacted by Hurricane Ida. They say people in unaffected parts of the country can help by donating monetarily, by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS, or texting the word IDA to 90999. They also encourage residents to make blood donation appointments “to ensure a sufficient blood supply remains available for patients.”
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