THUNDER BAY – Eighty additional Hydro One workers are joining the 145 line maintainers, foresters and support staff already assisting in power restoration efforts in the United States.
This afternoon crews from across southern Ontario are driving south to Westchester and Orange Counties to put their skills to work alongside Con Edison crews in New York State. They will arrive late tonight and begin work tomorrow morning after receiving orientation and a full safety briefing. “Some areas have been without electricity for over a week and with the weather getting colder the situation is getting more critical every day,” said Len McMillan, Vice President, Lines and Forestry. “Our company has the skills, expertise and resources to make an important difference so sending every worker we can is the right thing to do.”
New York City Mayor Bloomberg states, “To help deal with the power outage, at the City’s request, the Long Island Power Authority has provided 10 emergency generators to help bring back power to Hammel Houses on the Rockaways. NYCHA has also received generators to restore power to Carlton Manor, Beach 41st, Ocean Bay, and Red Fern developments, also in the Rockaways. And the NYPD has moved mobile light towers to the Rockaways”.
Bloomberg adds, “There’s no question that the continuing lack of electrical service is jeopardizing the health and safety of people living in affected areas during this cold snap. The forecast is for continued cold weather for much of this week, and potentially a serious storm with wind gusts of 40 to 50 miles an hour beginning Wednesday afternoon and into Thursday. The storm could bring more flooding, although thankfully not of the scale that Sandy did”.
“All this makes our work more difficult and more urgent – which is why today I’ve designated ‘community restoration directors’ we’re calling them to deal with the immediate human needs of people recovering from Sandy’s effects. These community restoration directors are seasoned, high-level managers in our administration that I have enormous confidence in – their ability to manage, their ability to reach out, their ability to get resources from all parts of our administration,” added the Mayor.
The issue is bigger than just in New York City, and the help from Hydro One should help across the state.
Background on Mutual Assistance Agreements
- Hydro One has reciprocal agreements in place with North American utilities to provide assistance during significant power outages.
- In mutual assistance situations, all costs are covered by the utility receiving the help.
- On Canada Day, 200 Hydro One workers travelled to Washington D.C, Baltimore and Virginia after a massive storm hit the region.
- In February of 2010, Hydro One helped utilities in Vermont in the wake of a winter storm.
- In September 2008, crews travelled to Ohio to help restore power after the remnants of Hurricane Ike caused massive outages.
- Hydro One crews also provided assistance to the State of Florida following hurricanes in 2004 and 2005.
- In 2007, Hydro One became the only non-U.S. utility to be awarded the Edison Electric Institute’s “Emergency Recovery Award” in recognition of outstanding efforts in restoring electric service that has been disrupted by severe weather conditions or other natural events.
- Several US utilities helped out in the aftermath of the Ice Storm in 1998.
Hydro One delivers electricity safely, reliably and responsibly to homes and businesses across the province of Ontario and owns and operates Ontario’s 29,000 km high-voltage transmission network that delivers electricity to large industrial customers and municipal utilities, and a 121,000 km low-voltage distribution system that serves about 1.3 million end-use customers and smaller municipal utilities in the province. Hydro One is wholly owned by the Province of Ontario.