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ROPE: Cooperation Among Cooperatives

Four SCEC lineworkers spend week away assisting other co-ops

When neighboring electric cooperatives asked for assistance following a tornado, torrential rain and straight-line winds on July 19, four St. Croix Electric Cooperative lineworkers answered: On Saturday, July 20 Lucas Grant (in orange shirt and white hat near pole in photo) and David Kaczmarski (at far right in photo)­­ packed up, said goodbye to their families and headed out the next day to help Barron County Electric Cooperative with their restoration efforts, and on Monday, July 22, SCEC’s Keith Bauer and Brad McCulloch did the same for Polk-Burnett Electric Cooperative. All four worked through the next Saturday.

It wasn’t only SCEC’s neighbors who needed help: Invoking ROPE (Restoration of Power in an Emergency) assistance were Polk-Burnett, Barron, Chippewa Valley, Oconto, and Central Wisconsin Electric Cooperatives, and help came from far and wide. Twenty cooperatives from not just Wisconsin but also Minnesota, Illinois and Michigan responded with crews and equipment.

“We thank our many allies who came to our aid,” Polk-Burnett General Manager Steve Stroshane wrote in his blog. “We were assisted by crews from 11 neighboring cooperatives and three contractors with expertise in tree clearing, underground and overhead power line construction. More than 100 people were working in the field and a dozen more were coordinating restoration efforts and outage communications in our Centuria office.”

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