LES to send crews for storm relief after Hurricane Idalia

LINCOLN — Lincoln Electric System is deploying staff and vehicles to help utilities in Florida with anticipated power restoration efforts due to Hurricane Idalia.

Two crews comprised of 10 LES employees are headed to Tallahassee, Florida, as Hurricane Idalia is expected to make landfall Aug. 30. In preparation, utilities in the path are prestaging restoration workers and equipment and coordinating response efforts with their state and local officials. 

"Storms like Hurricane Idalia can cause damage to a variety of infrastructure," said Paul Crist, LES vice president of Energy Delivery. "Our crews are cross-trained to safely restore power wherever they are needed, from large transmission lines to overhead and underground neighborhood lines."

LES crews will deploy Aug. 29 at 3 p.m. and are expected to arrive in Florida Sept. 1. A crew from Grand Island will travel with LES to assist in restoration efforts.

The American Public Power Association is helping to coordinate assistance efforts in the region. More than 2,000 community-owned electric utilities across the country make up the APPA. As a member of the APPA's mutual aid network, LES is reimbursed for all costs of deploying resources to assist other utilities. 

LES and its workers consistently answer the call — near or far — when fellow utilities face challenges requiring mutual aid assistance. The utility most recently offered a hand restoring power in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, in the wake of Hurricane Ian in 2022.

"Whether assisting communities in need of mutual aid or serving our families, neighbors and friends in the Lincoln area, safety remains our top priority," Crist said.

Connect with LES social media to get updates on your local utility's power restoration efforts following Hurricane Idalia.