PEC linemen help neighboring state

Published 5:16 pm Friday, February 20, 2015

Four linemen from Pioneer Electric Cooperative were sent to assist crews at a fellow cooperative in northeast Georgia to restore power to more than 70,000 cooperative members affected by Monday’s severe winter weather.

Pioneer Electric Cooperative (PEC) received word late Tuesday afternoon that assistance was needed at Jackson EMC, and within two hours, four PEC linemen were packed and ready to lend a helping hand. Kevin Brogden and Johnny Taylor of Pioneer’s Greenville crew joined Josh Middleton and Keith Crittenden of Pioneer’s Selma crew in answering the call to serve the members of the fellow cooperative in Georgia.

“We are fortunate this season to remain unaffected by major winter storms ourselves,” said PEC’s Manager of Engineering and Operations Phillip Baker. “Our guys were eager to assist Jackson EMC as they work to restore power to thousands of cooperative members.”

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The four linemen joined other Alabama rural electric cooperatives in sending assistance.

Crews took with them bucket trucks, digger trucks, pole trailers, tree clearing equipment, mechanic service trucks, as well as food, water, warm clothing and other necessities for the icy conditions.

Two safety representatives from the Alabama Rural Electric Association (AREA) will also be onsite with the crews.

The cooperatives are members of AREA, a federation of 22 not-for-profit electric cooperatives that provides dependable electricity to more than 1 million Alabamians in 64 counties.