ST. LOUIS – Ameren joined energy companies from across the Midwest this week on mutual assistance calls administered by Edison Electric Institute. This comes at the request of Duke Energy as they prepare for widespread damage and power outages and the state of Florida braces for Hurricane Irma’s landfall.
Ameren has released approximately 500 workers ranging from linemen, tree trimmers and substation electricians to aid Duke Energy in restoration efforts.
Ameren Missouri and Ameren Illinois are voluntary members of the electric power industry’s mutual assistance network through EEI. When called upon, a company will send either company employees, contractors, or both, along with specialized equipment to help with the restoration efforts of a fellow company. In essence, it allows a utility hit by a major or catastrophic storm to expand its workforce by borrowing field personnel from other companies in unaffected areas.
The mutual aid call made by the Florida utility is requesting nearly 8,000 linemen and 6,000 tree trimmers based on Irma’s predicted devastation to the state’s energy infrastructure. Ameren will participate in additional mutual assistance calls in the aftermath of the hurricane.
“Our mutual aid partners have helped Ameren Missouri customers on a number of occasions as we have battled tornados, ice storms and other severe weather,” said Michael Moehn, chairman and president of Ameren Missouri. “As Florida braces for this hurricane, our thoughts and prayers are with them. We are glad that the dedication and expertise of Ameren co-workers and contractors can help the state in its time of need.”
“We have extensive experience in restoration efforts in Illinois,” said Richard Mark, chairman and president, Ameren Illinois. “Safety during this restoration effort will be paramount as we will be working in unfamiliar surroundings. As we do before any job here in Illinois, our on-site job and safety briefings will be critical before we perform any restoration task.”