Cleco is preparing to send a 34-member crew to Oklahoma City today to help Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. (OGE) restore power to customers after yesterday`s devastating tornado destroyed its electric system. The crew is expected to arrive in Oklahoma tomorrow.
"After seeing the damage that resulted from this horrific tornado, our crews are leaving with the expectation of not repairing lines for OGE but helping them rebuild their system," said Floyd Pittman, Cleco`s mutual assistance coordinator. "Our hearts go out to the families that have experienced loss, and we know of no better way to help them than bringing back power so they can begin to rebuild."
OGE serves more than 801,000 customers in Oklahoma and western Arkansas. At this time, approximately 30,000 customers are reporting power outages.
"Over the years, we`ve enjoyed a close working relationship with OGE," said Pittman. "We are ready to help each other at any time. Because of past hurricanes, we know what it is like to have your electric grid destroyed and customers unable to report outages because their homes are no longer standing. It is a desperate feeling. However, we also know the hope you feel when you see the trucks from other companies arriving to help. We are pleased to offer our assistance to OGE, and we are prepared to stay and work for as long as they need us."
Cleco is a member of the Southeastern Electric Exchange`s mutual assistance program where member utilities offer power restoration assistance after major weather events.