Entergy Texas workers returning home

Jason Citrano, lineman fourth class out of Entergy Texas’ Beaumont Service Center, gets a grateful hug from New Jersey residents whose power he helped restore.

Entergy Texas crews are returning home after almost three weeks spent helping restore utility service to victims of Superstorm Sandy.

“We sent 112 workers, including our company employees and contract workers, to the Northeast,” said David Richard, operations manager for Entergy Texas. “They were very successful in helping utilities in that area in their time of need, just like they have done for us following major restorations for our customers.”

The workers left in two waves in late October, with most headed for New Jersey. Eventually, they worked with Con Edison in New York and PEPCO Holdings Inc. in New Jersey.

“Our workers remained in high spirits while away,” Richard said, “while facing challenges including cold weather, traffic jams and working with unfamiliar equipment.”

The Entergy Texas teams were released Monday and are expected to arrive home in Texas by Thursday. Entergy Corporation’s total of 875 workers joined an army of 67,000 from more than 80 utility companies from as far away as Canada, California and Hawaii. The storm disrupted power to 9.6 million utility customers.

“Sandy proved to be a devastating storm and we’re doing our part to help restore normalcy to a lot of people,” Richard said. “As one of Entergy’s workers put it, ‘We are a village that will do whatever it takes to get your lights on – because they’re going to be coming to help us one day.’”