Cherokee County Electric Crews Travel To Florida To Aid In Hurricane Relief

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Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast rewritten or redistributed

They headed out Sunday and were joined by linemen from Meeker, MN Valley - Jordan, Stearns, Todd-Wadena & Lake Region electric co-ops, all Minnesota Touchstone Energy cooperatives.

An Intercounty Electric Cooperative crew left Tuesday for Florida to help restore electricity after Hurricane Irma struck over the weekend, leaving millions without power in the Sunshine State.

Electric co-ops in Louisiana and MS have also returned help in Missouri, helping to restore power after ice storms in 2007 and 2009.

"Cooperation among cooperatives is a guiding principle, and Intercounty is excited to be able to help those in need".

Suwannee Valley Electric, where the MN crews are headed, now has 22,000 of their 25,000 members out of power.

As Hurricane Irma rolled through, officials in Florida said approximately six million people were without power.

Crews are expected to be gone up to two weeks, according to information from Meeker Cooperative. Offers of assistance came from electric cooperatives as far away as New Hampshire, Vermont and South Dakota.

Clay Electric serves 170,000 members in 14 North Florida counties.

"In addition, five other crews are on standby to be sent to Florida or Georgia, as they are needed or requested". The first hurricane they responded to was in 2004, when Hurricane Ivan hit the Gulf Coast. Participating co-ops include Adams-Columbia, Barron, Bayfield, Central Wisconsin, and Clark Electric Cooperatives, Dairyland Power Cooperative, Dunn and Eau Claire Energy Cooperatives, Oakdale and Oconto Electric Cooperatives, Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services, Price and Richland Electric Cooperatives, Riverland, Rock, and Scenic Rivers Energy Cooperatives, and Taylor and Vernon Electric Cooperatives. Its emergency assistance program began in 1948.

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