Santa Gets Help From Local Cooperative
HOOKER– Santa's sleigh wasn't the only vehicle bearing gifts for folks in the Panhandle region this Christmas. As the shiny white trucks of Tri-County Electric Cooperative crisscrossed the area restoring power to members, they brought with them extra supplies to repair hundreds of electric services. Typically, the member is responsible for installing and maintaining the meter base, conduit and weatherhead that bring electric service from Tri-County Electric's system on the back of the home or business. In an effort to expedite the repairs and assist members, crews repaired or replaced those services for hundreds of members at no charge.
“We realized early in the restoration operation that there would not be enough private electricians in the area to make the hundreds of required repairs in a timely fashion,” said Tri-County Electric CEO Jack Perkins. “Obviously, we knew that we needed to get the lights back on quickly so Rudolph and his buddies would be able to land safely on Christmas Eve. Given that situation, we made the decision to use our own crews, along with crews from other cooperatives and private electrical contractors to make all of the necessary repairs at the cooperative's expense.”
Several other Oklahoma cooperatives supported the restoration effort. Crews from Northwestern Electric of Woodward, Alfalfa Electric of Cherokee and Cimarron Electric of Kingfisher worked alongside Tri-County Electric technicians and 19 local electricians.
“Some accounts were off for several days, and we thank those members for their patience,” Perkins added. “This storm was a great example of what makes cooperatives unique. It's humbling to see so many dedicated people from different companies and parts of the state all pulling together to take care of people when things get tough.”