LOUISVILLE — With the deployment of an additional 33 linemen to North Carolina on Sunday morning, Kentucky’s electric cooperatives now have 143 linemen assigned to co-ops in South Carolina and North Carolina following Hurricane Matthew. This is the largest number of Kentucky cooperative linemen deployed out of state since Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Among the new deployments is a crew of five Jackson Purchase Energy Corporation workers who departed early Sunday morning to travel to North Carolina to assist with power restoration.
“JPEC is part of a network of more than 900 electric cooperatives across the nation,” said Dennis L. Cannon, JPEC’s president and CEO. “During emergencies, we help each other restore power quickly and safely.”
The JPEC workers will be restoring power for Pee Dee Electric Membership Corporation (EMC) in Wadesboro, North Carolina. As of Saturday evening, approximately 40 percent of Pee Dee EMC’s 20,000 consumers were without power.
Big Sandy linemen are also helping to restore power.
Coordinated by the Safety and Loss Prevention Team of the Kentucky Association of Electric Cooperatives, the mutual aid effort is in response to requests from affected electric cooperatives.
A breakdown of the assignments follows.
South Carolina (110 linemen)
Berkeley Electric Cooperative: South Kentucky – 8; Licking Valley – 6; Clark – 6; Cumberland Valley – 13; Warren – 8; Farmers – 8; Jackson Energy – 13.
Aiken Electric Cooperative: Nolin – 16; Blue Grass – 8.
Palmetto Electric Cooperative: Owen – 14; Shelby – 4; Salt River – 8.
North Carolina (33 linemen)
South River EMC : Fleming-Mason – 5; Big Sandy – 4; West Kentucky – 5.
Pee Dee EMC: Jackson Purchase – 5; Meade – 2; Kenergy – 12.
Pennyrile Electric Cooperative crews are assisting a municipal system in Florida.
All four of the Kentucky electric cooperatives who had planned to compete in the KC International Rodeo have instead sent linemen from their rodeo teams to assist with this storm restoration (Nolin, Owen, Clark & Blue Grass).
“KAEC commends the sacrifice and commitment of linemen crews and staffs from our member cooperatives across the commonwealth who are demonstrating the co-op spirit to help our co-op brethren affected by Hurricane Matthew,” said Chris Perry, president and CEO of the statewide association.