Texomans help restore power in Houston - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Texomans help restore power in Houston

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There are dark days ahead for southeast Texas, and we're not just speaking metaphorically.

The lights will be out in a wide area for a long time, and Texoma companies doing everything they can to help restore power in the disaster zone.

"The worst case scenario is death," said David McGinnis of the Grayson-Collin Electric Cooperative. 

The flooding from Hurricane Harvey affected everything -- in the air, on the ground, and even beneath the surface. 

"A great amount of the electricity in Houston is in underground facilities," explained Oncor area manager Todd Thompson.

Storm victims are living in the dark, waiting for their power to be restored.

"We can survive in the more rural areas that we have... it's an inconvenience," Thompson said. "There, it's a necessity."

CenterPoint Energy reported Tuesday that about 100,000 people are still without power in the downtown Houston area.

"Everything is dependent on power in the metroplex areas...everything," Thompson said.

On the way to help
Texoma utility crews in Waco on the way to the disaster zone. (Courtesy)

Crews from Oklahoma Gas & Electric, the Grayson-Collin Electric Cooperative and Oncor headed south to help their power company colleagues get the lights turned back on.

"At that point, you have to trust your experience and their mapping and their lead guy," McGinnis said.

A rule of thumb we all know: Water and electricity don't mix. That poses many dangers for these linemen.

"I was talking to them last night before I came back with supplies, they were chest-deep in water," McGinnis said.

Getting the power back on could take months because of the dangerous working conditions.

"That's why its going to be a slow-go getting it back on, because they need to make sure they do it safely," Thompson added.

But at the end of the day, teamwork is the best course of action.

"They'll help us when we have a major storm, we'll help them when they have a major storm," Thompson said.

And Texoma power companies are already lining up relief crews to continue the difficult but essential work.

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