Tri-State contractors return from helping along Gulf Coast

Local News

(WEHT)- Chad Hinkle, Clint Harl, and six others from the Wayne-White Counties Electric Cooperative are back from helping restore power in Louisiana following Hurricane Laura in August.

While Hinkle helped in the Gulf Coast following Hurricane Rita in 2005 and Hurricane Michael in 2018, he says Laura was the worst one he’s worked on. Harl agrees, saying “I don’t think I’ve ever seen as many homes and property and lines torn up in as wide and as big an area as this.”

The crew had the task of helping power companies near Lake Charles get electricity flowing again and they say the work was frustrating because despite working 16 hour days, they add it never felt like they were seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

However, despite the devastation, they say the people of Louisiana took the situation well. This was no sightseeing trip for the crew, either. Workers stayed in a tent city and spent much of the day working in hot, humid Gulf air but Harl says knowing he was helping people helped him get through the day.

We represent a cooperative, but we also represent a community and families, and it’s a way to send help from here to there, to show that people from our area care about people from your area, and we want to help you.

Clint Harl

And while the crew says they were happy to help, they are also happy to be home and safe.

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(This story was originally published on September 17, 2020)

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