KU, LG&E crews mobilize to help in wake of Hurricane Ian

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Posted at 11:45 AM, Sep 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-28 17:39:05-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — When hurricanes begin moving in, that's when powerline workers from all around the country mobilize. And now there's a group from the Commonwealth heading to Florida.

KU crews left Lexington early Wednesday morning for Florida and Georgia. They're staging in the region as they anticipate major power outages in the wake of the hurricane.

More than 200 employees and contractors from Kentucky are making the trip, joining thousands of other line workers from more than 20 states. The assistance is part of a mutual agreement between utility companies, according to KU spokesperson Daniel Lowry.

"We help them and they help us in times of need," he said. "So it works out that you have more resources available to you as a utility."

Crews stage first, allowing them to be ready to go once they identify which areas need help the fastest.

"You've gotta identify the real trouble spots, and the real priorities that you need to restore power first," Lowry said. "So those crews will be dispatched according to that."

Lowry said crews will put in 16-hour days until everyone in Florida is back online. They could relieve current crews with additional staff as needed.

"These guys work really hard," Lowry told LEX 18. "But for them, I think it's a passion. Something they care about, and they wanna help folks, and they wanna get power restored."

According to Lowry, the host utility companies pay for the work, so helping customers in Florida comes at no cost to customers in Kentucky.