From the Top with CEO Patrick Grace – April 2023

Last month, tornadoes tore through southeast Norman, damaging poles and powerlines and causing slews of outages. At the height of the storm, about 15,000 members were without power, but when the power goes out, so do we.

Crews went out as soon as the storms passed on Sunday, Feb. 26 and restored power
to most members by the following Monday afternoon. A day later, almost all members’ power and fiber services were restored. The in-the-moment problem-solving it takes to restore power quickly, safely and correctly is a true testament to the dedication and strong will it takes to do the work lineworkers do. It is safe to say we would not exist without the dedication our lineworkers demonstrate and the pride they take in doing their job well. Thank you to each and every one of them and their families for safely keeping our lights on.

Please be sure to thank a lineworker if you see one working in your area this month. April 10 is National Lineworker Appreciation Day.

Regarding linework, vegetation management is another essential part of managing our electric system. We work hard to ensure trees, bushes and other vegetation can live safely in tandem with our lines and poles. Our two on-staff arborists help ensure we maintain our rights-of-way with careful consideration of the vegetation we come in contact with. You can learn more about our approach to tree trimming and vegetation management, as well as download our tree-planting guide and other resources at link.okcoop.org/treeandveg

This is also why we work with the Arbor Day Foundation to be a Tree Line USA Utility. To achieve this certification, utilities follow industry standards for quality tree care, provide annual worker training in best tree-care practices, sponsor a tree-planting and public education program, maintain a tree-based energy conservation program, and participate in an Arbor Day celebration. You can read more about this here.

Whether it’s ice, tornadoes, or overgrown trees, we continue to do everything we can to ensure our members can rely on the power and services we provide.

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