More than a week after the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma, there are still power outages. Crews continue to work long hours, attempting to fix the problems. Many of the crews working the outages are from other states, even other countries, and they are all missing the comforts of home. Or they were….
One Florida woman’s Facebook post shows just how grateful local residents are for the help they’re receiving. Dozens of women came out to pick up laundry from the power crews.
Jennifer Taylor Koukos shared the image from the Sebring International Raceway.
“See this line? All these ladies waited in line tonight to take loads of linemen’s laundry home. One lineman asked me what those ladies were standing in line for. When I told him they were waiting to be given laundry, with a look of sheer disbelief he said, “You gotta be kidding me.” What a great night. 💗 #floridastrong”
Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long has described the progress optimistically. There are still more than 4,000 people in emergency shelters, and as many as 675,000 homes and businesses are in the dark.
The lower Keys have just opened up, too, allowing many to get in to the area for the first time since the storm. There is widespread damage to roads in the area, but crews continue to work.
Energy Secretary Rick Perry notes that much of the power-grid will have to be rebuilt. Most of the lines in Florida are above ground, and much of the infrastructure was taken down by the high winds. The lack of fuel in the area is contributing to the problem. While many gas stations have fuel, they don’t have the power needed to operate pumps.
Yet the sheer scale of the recovery effort is staggering. 60,000 U.S. and Canadian electrical workers are in Florida. Their neighbor to the north, Georgia, is also struggling with spotty outages. While Irma’s strength was greatly diminished when it rolled into Georgia, the storms brought down a large number of trees, leaving many in the state without power.