Eastern Kentucky was hit with catastrophic flooding last month, leaving more than 23,000 people without power. To assist with restoration efforts, AEP Ohio sent 24 assessors, 52 lineworkers and two drone teams. Among them was Matt Anderson, a line crew supervisor who works out of the New Philadelphia service center.
AEP Ohio personnel regularly respond to several types of natural disasters, including hurricanes, ice storms and severe wind storms, and though Matt has been with AEP Ohio for almost six years, he says the devastation was unlike anything he’d seen.
“This damage was easily the worst I have ever seen,” Matt said. “Cars, houses—everything was gone, wiped down the creek. Everyone’s possessions were stuck up in the trees, forty feet in the air.”
The historic flash flooding in Kentucky and the resulting landslides and mudslides posed unique challenges. Although remote locations, inaccessible roadways and poor cell service combined with rain and extreme heat made for slow progress, Matt and the AEP Ohio crews were able to help restore power to more than 18,000 residents before returning home—a true testament to the power of teamwork and the bond of a community.