Power has been reconnected … finally … for everyone affected by the January 26 ice storm that devastated Southeast Missouri.
Jim McCarty with the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives says initital estimates are that the storm did $144 million dollars in damage to the grid … more than 10,000 utility poles and transmission lines were leveled.
McCarty says the mass amount of work put into the system will pay off — poles that were repaired and replaced should stand up better to future storms.
More than 3,000 contractors and linemen were brought in from Iowa, Illinois, Mississippi, Louisana and from throughout Missouri to complete the repairs.
He says the mass amount of work put into the system will pay off — poles that were repaired and replaced should stand up better to future storms.
McCarty says state agencies are now reviewing the situation to see what went right, what went wrong, and what plans can be made for the future.
FEMA’s expected to reimburse the state for damages to the infrastructure. Initial estimates are at 144 million dollars, although McCarty says he expects that number to increase dramatically.
President Obama declared 20 of the 22 counties affected a Major Disaster Area, meaning they’ll qualify for reimbursement. No word yet on whether individual assistance will be granted.
Listen to Jim McCarty discuss the situation by clicking the audio icon.
Jessica Machetta interviews Jim McCarty [Download/listen MP3]
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