South Georgia emergency crews head to help Katrina victims - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

South Georgia emergency crews head to help Katrina victims

August 29, 2005

Albany -- South Georgia emergency crews left Monday to help in the clean up after Hurricane Katrina.

Forty-five Georgia Power linemen are headed for Mississippi, to restore the electricity to storm victims. The Georgia Power crews were told to pack for two weeks, because they expect the worst from Hurricane Katrina. Matt Godwin said "I don't know if I've ever seen anything quite like it before."

While Katrina was making landfall, Georgia Power lineman Matt Godwin was loading his truck. Godwin said "You'll go in and set new poles and string new wires, because everything that's there will be destroyed for the most part."

Godwin has worked in the aftermath of six hurricanes in his seven years with Georgia Power. Godwin said "It's just a hurry up and wait kind of situation. Wait and let the storm come in, and then it's done what it's going to do, we go in."

Linemen from Thomasville, Tifton, Cuthbert, Bainbridge, and Valdosta gathered in Albany, then headed to Montgomery this afternoon. From there they will be sent to where they are needed most, for what appears to be a big job. Godwin said "From what it looks like to us, it's just going to be total devastation."

All these Georgia Power linemen headed to Katrina's aftermath are volunteers, wanting to help the victims. Godwin said "This is our way of helping. We thrive in situations like this."

They load their coolers with ice, because it may be the last they see for days. Linemen heading to the storm's destruction, to try to get the victims lives back on track.

Georgia Power crews are to meet in Birmingham, Montgomery, Dothan, and Pensacola. Then they will be sent out on work assignments from there.

The South Georgia team is expected to work in Mississippi for the next two weeks.

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