Day 13 – Saturday, September 23rd FINAL Update

It’s so good to finally type the word FINAL.  It’s been almost two full weeks and although our offices are returning to normal operations we are still keeping some of the outside crews around to help finish the last little bits. There are still some pumps out there in hard to reach flooded areas and many of you who had damage during the storm are ready to be reconnected. The work is far from done.

If there was a pole down or replaced near you (and that is most of you) you have probably noticed the crews put a new pole up and left the old one there. We still have to clean that up.  There are also still a lot of poles leaning that will need to be shored up or replaced and sporadic issues with trees and transformer fuses are going to keep us busy for quite some time.

It’s really a blessing to see our communities returning to normal.  I know my fellow employees and I are very ready for a day spent on the couch with our family around us. Yet many of us will return home to damage and clean up still.  Please continue to keep them in your thoughts.

I have been blown away by our members during these past two weeks. Your generosity and support of our crews is quite possibly the best this country has to offer. I’m so proud to call you my neighbors. You patience with us during many hot and buggy nights did not go unnoticed. We were prepared to field phone calls and messages from angry people but instead we listened to your understanding, thanks, and constant encouragement.  All I can say is WOW!

I am especially grateful today for those of you that have stuck with me on Facebook. Every day I looked at the number of people still out of power and couldn’t understand why hundreds and sometimes thousands more people were still interacting with us on Facebook.  It was my mission from the beginning of our restoration to try to reach out to all of you on a very personal level and give you as much information as I possibly could. In return you have all touched my heart in such a personal level I could never express my thanks properly. I am so humbled by each one of you.

Today we are doing things a little differently. I’m posting early because I think Jeff deserves the last word today. I’ll be posting his video as soon as he is ready to speak to you. In typical fashion he wants a few more reports from the field so look out for it later this afternoon. I have had a little experience with crisis management and I have to give Jeff and the entire GEC storm team a lot of credit today. We spend months preparing for hurricane season and hope we never need to put our plans into motion. As much as I would never want to go through this again I am so impressed at how each of our different parts were able to come together and get the job done. I can’t even begin to express to you the amount of detail that goes into a restoration effort like this.  It’s just simply staggering.

That’s it for my final report. If you need to be reconnected after repairs give us a call at 863-531-5000.  If that tree that was hanging on for dear life finally gave up the fight and knocked your power back out please enter an outage report at our website at www.gladesec.com/safety/outages.

As for our Facebook page, I’ll still be checking in on it but I think we might slow down a little bit. I’m ready to go back to normal here as well.  Look for Jeff’s message later today and I’m sure you’ll see me here once in a while but it won’t be every day! For now I wish you peace and it is my absolute pleasure to wish each and every one of you a good evening.