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Holston Electric sends workers to assist with Florida power outages

STAFF REPORT • Oct 11, 2018 at 9:00 PM

ROGERSVILLE — Holston Electric Cooperative, based in Rogersville, is sending nine workers to Talquin Electric Cooperative in Quincy, Fla., to assist with Hurricane Michael recovery efforts.

Michael strengthened to a Category 4 storm overnight Tuesday and made landfall near Panama City, Fla., Wednesday afternoon.

Sustained winds in excess of 140 mph slammed into Florida’s Panhandle throughout the day with tornado-force intensity, and emergency management officials have warned that power outages in the storm’s path could be widespread.

“Strong storms like this can leave thousands of people without power,” said HEC general manager Jimmy Sandlin. “We are proud of our linemen for volunteering to assist. They will be working long days in difficult conditions, but they were quick to respond to the call for help. We ask that the public keep them and their families in your thoughts and prayers while they are away.”

Crews left from Rogersville Wednesday morning, and it is unclear how long they will be in Florida.

“It is an honor to be able to help,” Sandlin said. “When our employees go to do storm work, the conditions are always tough, but they always come home feeling good to know that they helped people when they needed it the most.”

Crews from HEC are joining other lineworkers from electric co-ops across Tennessee who will be assisting with hurricane recovery efforts. The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association in Nashville is coordinating requests for mutual aid and makes travel and lodging arrangements for crews who respond.

“Our crews have a reputation for responding quickly, working safely and showing compassion to those who have been impacted by storms like this one,” says David Callis, executive vice president and general manager of the TECA. “We appreciate our employees’ desire to serve and wish them well in the days to come.”

HEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit distributor of TVA power that provides safe, reliable and affordable energy to more than 30,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in Hawkins and Hamblen counties. Visit www.holstonelectric.com to learn more.

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