CEC crew, city crew help in icy Kentucky

Published 12:37 am Thursday, February 5, 2009

Covington Electric Cooperative (CEC) has sent a crew to assist with ice storm recovery in Kentucky, while a six-man team with Andalusia Utilities left Wednesday afternoon.

Patty Singleton-Seay said eight CEC employees left Covington County early Sunday morning to assist West Kentucky RECC (located in Mayfield, Ky.) with power restoration following the recent devastating ice storm.

CEC is expecting to assist the Kentucky co-op until power is restored, which may take anywhere from three to four weeks. CEC employees will be rotated home on a seven to 10 day basis.

City utilities manager Jerry Williams said the city crew will assist the Warren Rural Electric Cooperative in Bowling Green, Ky.

Mayor Earl Johnson, who made the announcement at a press conference earlier Wednesday, said the Bowling Green co-op reported an estimated 9,400 accounts still without power as of 7 a.m. Wednesday.

“This ice storm is being described as the worst natural disaster the state of Kentucky has ever experienced,” Johnson said. “As an interesting side note, when Andalusia was hit by Hurricane Dennis, the city of Bowling Green sent crews to get us back up, so one can call this payback for their help to us in difficult times.”

This assistance was made possible through a mutual-aid agreement with the American Public Power Association and its members, Johnson said.

“As a part of this agreement, the (Bowling Green) co-op will reimburse Andalusia for all our men’s time, the expense of the equipment and any materials used,” he said. “We’re not sure how long the crew will stay, but we expect they’ll be gone for about 10 days.”

Johnson said city residents should not worry that the city will be without adequate utility employees in the event of a local storm.