Florida Helps Pick Up the Pieces After Sandy
Tampa Electric, Floridians send assistance to the recovery effort
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, relief for victims is coming from an unexpected source: the state of Florida.
Millions of people lost power along the east coast after Sandy made landfall. States like New York and New Jersey needed all the help they could get to restore power to those who lost it. And Tampa Electric in Tampa, Florida, stepped up.
From October 26 to November 15, more than 100 Tampa Electric employees ranging from linemen to support personnel were sent to Jackson, New Jersey, to assess and assist with storm restoration.
Tampa Electric is a member of the Southeastern Electric Exchange, or SEE, which is a non-profit power company that pledges assistance to those affected by natural disasters or other emergencies. Tampa Electric's main priority during the recovery period is to help affected utility companies in their efforts to rebuild.
Because the electrical damage was so great, Tampa Electric customer service professionals had to assist certain companies with making customer calls after the storm. The company used the Mutual Assistance Routing System, or MARS, to help other utility companies such as NSTAR, Pepco, Atlantic City Electric, and Delmarva communicate with customers. Through web-based software, Tampa Electric was able to access basic customer information to submit repair requests electronically.
But help is coming from other parts of Florida, too.
Lisa Cohen is the co-chair of Sunrise Park Elementary Samaritans in Boca Raton, Florida. She understands first-hand the urgency of getting the power back on. Cohen currently has family living in the northeast without power.
To help with the Sandy recovery, Cohen has coordinated "Operation Dig Deep." The program encourages people to dig deep emotionally and financially to help rebuild a severely ravaged portion of the country. Her project began with local companies offering her free shipping to Sandy victims and has grown largely due to the power of social media.
Companies and individuals alike have vowed to continue their efforts until the effects of Sandy have been cleaned up and cleared out.
You can find share your Hurricane Sandy experiences and find more coverage of the storm and its aftermath on the Scholastic News Kids Press Corps Blog.
HURRICANE SANDY RECOVERY SPECIAL REPORT
Find out how kids across the country are helping the Hurricane Sandy relief effort — and catch up with the Kid Reporters' on-the-ground reporting during the storm — in the Hurricane Sandy Recovery Special Report.
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