GRDA crews head to Louisiana to help restore power following Ida’s landfall

Aug 28, 2021

A bucket truck rolls out of the gate at the GRDA Transmission and Distribution Headquarters (Pryor) on Saturday morning, August 28. A crew of 20 GRDA employees are headed to Lafayette, Louisiana, on a mutual aid mission to help that city’s electric utility repair any damage that may be caused after Hurricane Ida makes landfall.

As Hurricane Ida bears down on the Gulf Coast, a crew from the Grand River Dam Authority is headed to Lafayette, Louisiana, to help repair any damage the storm may cause to that city’s electric system.

The GRDA crew of 20 volunteers, including powerline maintenance and vegetation management personnel, mechanics and law enforcement, left Pryor at 6AM Saturday morning (August 28) to make the nearly 600-mile drive to the Lafayette area. The crew plans to be staged on Sunday and ready to move in for any possible repair work as soon as Ida passes through the area.

The trip is a familiar one, as GRDA also provided aid to Lafayette Utilities Systems (LUS) in October 2020, after Hurricane Delta made landfall.

Additionally, 11 GRDA Police Officers are also in Louisiana today, to assist with recovery efforts. Three officers are deployed with Oklahoma Task Force One. Six others are part of a rescue and response contingent also comprised of personnel from Mayes County Emergency Management, Craig County Emergency Management, Pryor Fire Department, and the Quapaw Tribe. Two other officers are also with the GRDA utility crew in Lafayette.

In fact, while Oklahoma is far from the hurricane zone, restoring power after such storms is nothing new for GRDA personnel. Along with Hurricane Delta and now Ida, GRDA has also helped restore power and provide water rescue assistance following Hurricanes Rita, Irma, Matthew, and Harvey. Over the years, GRDA personnel have responded to Florida, North Carolina, Louisiana, and Texas to offer that aid.

GRDA is Oklahoma’s largest public power utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Each day, GRDA strives to be an “Oklahoma agency of excellence” by focusing on the 5 E’s: electricity, economic development, environmental stewardship, employees, and efficiency.