Local utility workers help with Hurricane Florence recovery

A Fayetteville Public Utility crew will be heading to North Carolina on Thursday morning to offer a helping hand to the people impacted by the coming hurricane.

Posted: Sep 12, 2018 5:04 PM
Updated: Sep 13, 2018 7:40 AM

Local help is on the way for the millions of people bracing for Hurricane Florence. A Fayetteville Public Utility crew will be heading to North Carolina on Thursday morning to offer a helping hand to the people impacted by the coming hurricane.

Fayetteville Public Utilities has been preparing for almost two days to send a 10 man crew and 5 utility trucks to North Carolina. Lewis Steelman is leading the crew and has seen the aftermath of multiple hurricanes first hand.

"It's a situation that everybody needs to see one time in their life," Steelman. "You won't believe the destruction."

Steelman traveled to help with the recovery efforts after Hurricane Hugo in 1989 and more recently Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He is leading nine other Fayetteville Public Utility workers as they travel to North Carolina to help those impacted by Hurricane Florence.

"Nervous? Yes I am for my men. Storm? Oh we'll make it through the storm," Steelman said.

The crew will be stationed in Dudley, North Carolina and plan on leaving Thursday morning. Each truck holds different equipment for a variety of situations the crew could face. As for what they are expected to do, CEO Britt Dye says they'll do whatever it takes to help.

"Cutting trees, putting up lines, setting poles, doing whatever it takes to get the job done," Dye said.

Steelman does this for a specific reason.

"The customers will take care of you, they feed you, they offer you everything and they got nothing," Steelman said. "That has always been in my heart."

The Fayetteville Public Utility CEO tells WAAY31 the crew will be there at least seven days and the most important thing is his crew comes back home safe.

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