NB Power sends 15 crews to help with Sandy clean up
Utility says crews will assist in restoring power in Massachusetts
NB Power crews are travelling to Massachusetts to help restore power after post-tropical storm Sandy swept through the region, leaving a path of destruction in its wake.
The massive storm system destroyed homes and businesses, causing billions of dollars worth of damage and left millions without power in the northeastern United States.
NB Power sent 15 crews to the United States on Wednesday to help the massive clean-up operation.
Sherry Thomson, the vice-president of Customer Service, Distribution and Transmission at NB Power, said the 40 employees will get to work immediately when they arrive in Massachusetts.
"They'll be doing things such as ... there could be trees on the lines, there could be poles broken that they have to reset, there could be lines down," she said.
"So they'll be doing that sort of emergency service restoration work."
Thomson said the New Brunswick utility wanted to wait to make sure Sandy and any other weather systems did not create any widespread damage in this province before releasing their crews.
The decision was made late on Wednesday to allow the workers to travel to the United States.
Thomson said NB Power is always looking to help neighbouring jurisdictions in these situations. She said crews from outside of New Brunswick have come here in similar situations.
"In the last five years … we've provided assistance to 14 other utilities and in the same period of time, we've received assistance from 14 utilities as well," she said.
"So it's kind of interesting how the numbers worked out."
Power crews were tragically reminded of the dangers they face while performing restoration work on Wednesday.
In Sarnia, Ont., a hydro worker was killed while repairing damage from the storm.
Thomson said it's a risk that power crews are prepared to face.
"Our crews are very proud about the work that they do. And they're proud to help out their neighbours that are in need," she said.
Nova Scotia Power also sent 20 line technicians to the United States earlier this week.