By Bob Gerstle
I spent a good portion of day with a combined GC crew made up of Fresno and Davis linemen. They have spent 3 days in Jamaica, Queens replacing poles and repairing downed wire. Many crew members worked in Florida on mutual aid after hurricane damage and San Diego after the firestorm. It did not prepare them for the damage they have seen in New York.
The foremen running the 8-man crew are Chad Lavezzo and Anthony Esposito. Considering they and their crews come from yards three hours apart, the precision with which they work is remarkable. The customers were impressed as well. One Con Ed customer raved about the work ethic of the PG&E crew. As Lineman Rayshawn Neeley said, “The best part about being in New York, are the smiles we get after getting the power on.”
The biggest challenges according to Richard Turk,a GC MEO from Davis, is the different system used by Con Ed in terms of voltages and types of construction.
All seem to agree they are in the early stage of their New York visit. All have families back in California and hope the storm forecast this Wednesday doesn’t produce even more trouble. They also complimented the backing they are getting from the support team out here with them.
“We may get the glory,” said Lavezzo, “but we know we are getting support behind the scenes.”
Bob Gerstle is a business representative for IBEW Local 1245.
IBEW 1245 crews help with restoration in Sandy’s wake