Local News

Help From North Carolina Heads South

Posted September 7, 2004 8:29 a.m. EDT

— More help from North Carolina is on its way to hurricane-ravaged Florida.

On Tuesday, 260 Duke Power workers will head to a staging area in Daytona where millions are without power. Crews will be dispatched once they arrive.

Duke Power says the biggest problem with Frances was not the strength, but the size of the storm.

"I think the difference with this storm is that it's so widespread," said Scott Gardner of Duke Power. "Frances covered the whole state and it was a slow-moving storm, so they'll be facing a lot of restoration work."

Twenty employees of Wilson Energy are also on the way to Florida.

At first, crews will be working in Gainesville, home of the University of Florida. Like Wilson, Gainesville is a public power city. Gainesville Regional Utilities requested help through the ElectriCities Emergency Assistance Program, a mutual-aid agreement that links together crews from other cities in emergencies such as this.

On Sunday, 600 Progress Energy workers left the Triangle to help restore power in Orlando.

Both companies say they have enough crews in North Carolina to deal with potential trouble at home.

Eighteen Red Cross disaster response teams from the Carolinas arrived in Florida on Monday.