N.C. Electric Cooperatives Send Line Crews to Alabama, Tennessee to Help Restore Outages Caused by Tornadoes

Raleigh, N.C. —Seven of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives sent line crews to Alabama and Tennessee to assist the electric cooperatives in those states with power restoration efforts. Strong storms and tornadoes moved across the South earlier this week, resulting in widespread power outages.

The cooperatives in North Carolina that sent crews, including trucks and other mobile support vehicles, to affected areas are: Blue Ridge EMC in Lenoir, EnergyUnited in Statesville, Lumbee River EMC in Red Springs, Piedmont EMC in Hillsborough, Randolph EMC in Asheboro, Rutherford EMC in Forest City and Union Power Cooperative in Monroe.

The deployment of crews is part of a mutual aid agreement shared between the nation’s nearly 1,000 electric cooperatives to help one another in times of emergency, like natural disasters. Electric cooperatives across the country use the same line system engineering standards, which means line crews from any part of the country can quickly help sister cooperatives in restoration efforts.

“Electricity is critical to the way we live, and it’s important that people affected by this storm have power restored as quickly as possible,” said Jane Pritchard, director of corporate communications for North Carolina Association of Electric Cooperatives. “We are happy to help our fellow cooperatives and know that they would do the same for us because it’s the cooperative way.”

North Carolina’s electric cooperatives provide energy to 2.5 million people in 93 of the state’s 100 counties, primarily in rural parts of the state. The electric cooperatives own and maintain 95,000 miles of power lines.