OG&E Crews Helping Restore Power In Puerto Rico
PUERTO RICO - Four months after Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico, nearly 40% of the country is still without power.
“These people, what they’ve gone through for so many days, and still the attitudes they have” said Rick Berg, an OG&E worker who is in Puerto Rico right now.
OG&E crews arrived on the island this week to help get the lights on for the thousands who have been in the dark.
OG&E shipped the bright orange trucks in by barge, flew in 50 linemen on Saturday, and picked up their vehicles at the port on Sunday. They began working on Monday.
“You know you never dreamed you’d be in Puerto Rico restoring power,” said Berg.
Berg said people in Puerto Rico moved out of their homes so the crews would have a place to sleep.
PREPA, the utility company in Puerto Rico, asked for the assistance. OG&E is one of 19 companies that offered to send crews.
“For the most part we want to send experienced people who have been doing this because the conditions are different down there,” said Kathleen O’Shea, OG&E Spokesperson.
But on the very first day, they were already able to help get the lights back on. And the crews are thanked with cheering, and signs.
“The other day they even signed a Puerto Rican flag and gave it to one of our teams that got the power restored. So, it’s a great celebration after 123 days,” said Rick.
For Rick, that makes the 28 days he's away from home worth it.
“I’m glad and proud to be part of it,” he said.
Wednesday, the second wave or workers were getting vaccinated and briefed. They are scheduled to arrive in Puerto Rico around February 8.