The Edison Electric Institute today presented Gulf Power with the association’s “Emergency Assistance Award” for its extraordinary work assisting in power restoration efforts after Hurricane Irma last year.
“The work our crews did following Hurricane Irma and this award is a testament to the lineworkers, team leaders, engineers and all the support staff,” said Stan Connally, Gulf Power Chairman, President and CEO. “They always show tremendous dedication in restoring power safely and quickly to get customers’ lights back on.”
Gulf Power sent a team of about 100 employees to assist Georgia Power after the hurricane rolled through that state in September. At the same time, a 25-person storm team traveled to Tampa to assist Tampa Electric.
Once their work was completed, the Georgia team traveled to Florida and both Gulf Power teams assisted Florida Power & Light. The teams worked a total of 12 days with storm recovery operations. The storm knocked out power to more than 4 million residents in Florida and a million in Georgia.
Last January, Gulf Power received another EEI assistance award for restoration efforts following Hurricanes Matthew and Hermine in 2016.
“Our teammates are experienced when it comes to storm restoration,” added Connally. “They are always ready to respond whether here at home, with our Southern Company sister utilities or other utilities across the country.”
The award is presented twice per year to EEI member companies to recognize an outstanding response in assisting a neighboring or nearby electric company in power restoration efforts after service has been disrupted by severe weather conditions or other natural events. The winners of the fall 2016 awards were chosen by a panel of judges following an international nomination process, and the awards were presented during the winter EEI Board of Directors and CEO meeting.
“When disaster impacts a region, electric companies from across the nation are called on to assist impacted companies in need – mutual assistance is a hallmark of our industry,” said EEI President Tom Kuhn. “When Hurricane Irma struck, Gulf Power answered the call to help. Gulf Power’s assistance to restore service to impacted customers is a terrific example of mutual assistance in action.”