Courtesy of Opelika
Opelika Power Services (OPS) has received national commendations from the American Public Power Association (APPA) for its support in electric power restoration efforts in Vinton, Louisiana, and Robertsdale, Alabama.
On Aug. 27, 2020, OPS sent a six-man crew to assist Vinton, which suffered widespread outages as a result of Hurricane Laura.
The crew was led by Rusty Hornsby and consisted of Corey Burke, Taylor Simmons, Justin Adams, Jake Wilson and Joe Hodnett and worked until Sept. 7 repairing distribution lines. According to Hornsby, they repaired all the distribution lines before the transmission lines to the community had been restored. Transmission service was restored a few days after their departure and the community was able to receive power.
On Sept. 18, 2020, OPS sent another six-man crew to assist Robertsdale, which suffered widespread outages as a result of Hurricane Sally.
This crew, led by Zack Hester, consisted of Taylor Simmons, Wesley Ballard, Jacob Adams, Kyle Gray and Jake Wilson. Hester stated, “This is the hardest I have worked on a storm. We replaced a great deal of poles and big wire the entire time we were in Robertsdale.” Other crew members echoed his statement. The crew left Robertsdale on Sept. 22 and went to assist Riviera Utilities in Foley, Alabama, until Sept. 26.
“Opelika Power Services is very proud to be able to assist other communities during power outage events like these two hurricanes. We are grateful to the Mayor and City Council of Opelika for allowing us to send our team to assist other communities when they need help. Our team loves to help our neighbors when they need help because we never know when we may need it,” said Derek Lee, Director of Opelika Power Services. “These commendations go to our lineman who worked hard to assist these communities and families to get their power back on while spending time away from their family and community.”
Opelika Power Services participates in the American Public Power Association’s Mutual Aid Network, which coordinates with utilities and authorities during widespread power outages.