Friday, January 30, 2009

Electric Cooperatives Send Line Crews To Kentucky

/PRNewswire/ -- Personnel from 12 electric membership corporations (EMCs) in Georgia and Georgia Transmission Corp. are headed to Kentucky to help the state restore power to areas hardest hit by the recent winter storm.

"Being an electric co-op means calling upon your neighbors during emergencies," says Jim Wright, Georgia EMC Vice President of Training, Education & Safety. "We have an unwritten agreement that says if we're in trouble, they help us. In return, we help them."

Nearly 100 workers began leaving yesterday from Carroll EMC in Carrollton, Central Georgia EMC in Jackson, Cobb EMC in Marietta, Coweta-Fayette EMC in Newnan, Flint Energies in Reynolds, Diverse Power in LaGrange, Georgia Transmission Corp. in Tucker, Habersham EMC in Clarkesville, Hart EMC in Hartwell, Snapping Shoals EMC in Covington, Southern Rivers in Barnesville, Walton EMC in Monroe and Washington EMC in Sandersville. Additional crews are on standby, should they be needed.

EMC crews from Georgia will be working to restore power to approximately 200,000 co-op customers following reports of massive power outages due to thick layers of snow and ice causing downed trees and power lines. Georgia Transmission has sent two transmission line repair crews to Kentucky, and is likely to provide additional support as requests are received. Due to the extent of damage to distribution and transmission lines, some customers could be without power for several days.

The EMCs in Georgia have vast experience in restoring power following major weather events. In addition to recent efforts in Georgia, EMC crews have worked alongside electric co-ops in South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida and Texas to repair damage to the distribution system in the aftermath of winter storms, hurricanes, and tornadoes.

Georgia EMC is the statewide trade association representing the state's 42 EMCs, Oglethorpe Power Corp., Georgia Transmission Corp. and Georgia System Operations Corp. Through this statewide network, the 42 customer-owned EMCs provide electricity and related services to nearly four million people, nearly half of Georgia's population, across 73% of the state's land area. Georgia's 42 electric cooperatives now serve more customers than any other state network of EMCs in the nation.

Georgia Transmission Corp. plans, builds and maintains a transmission system of more than 2,700 miles of power lines and nearly 600 substations. The company also jointly plans and operates most of Georgia's 17,500 miles of transmission lines and substations with Georgia Power, MEAG Power and Dalton Utilities.

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