A quick-thinking crew from Georgia Power is credited with helping save a Pascagoula home from complete destruction Sunday evening during restoration work following Hurricane Nate, according to Pascagoula Police Captain of Field Services Doug Adams.
The Coastal Region A team was working along McArthur Street off Telephone Road when one of the crewmembers smelled smoke.
“Without those guys, another 15 minutes and that family would have been homeless,” said Adams, who was the first Pascagoula police or fire official on the scene. “You could smell the smoke and feel the windows getting warm.”
Georgia Power engineer supervisor Gloribel Perez, the crew’s team leader, said they had just made repairs on a power line in the area when apprentice lineman Derrick Bradshaw mentioned to his distribution supervisor Mitch Chorba of Brunswick that he smelled smoke.
They started patrolling the area and noticed smoke coming out of the eaves of the small, wood-framed house. They called 911 and confirmed with neighbors that no one was in the home.
While waiting for first responders to arrive, they pulled the meter and spoke to the landlord of the rental property who lived across the street. The crew advised her to not open the front door until emergency crews arrived.
Firefighters quickly extinguished the fire, leaving only minimal damage to the home. First responders also rescued two dogs that were inside the house.
“We have an excellent team,” Perez said. “I am very proud, but not surprised. The guys demonstrated qualities and values that they show every day. It has always been our practice to do final sweeps after restoring power and this time it proved that we are a ‘Citizen Where We Serve.’”
The family who rented the house was not at home. It was determined that they had left the stove turned on when power was lost in the area due to the storm that made landfall near Biloxi early Sunday morning. When power was restored, the stove apparently triggered the fire.
This is a good reminder to turn off appliances that were in use when power is lost.
Georgia Power crews were among the additional resources brought in to help get the lights back on within 24 hours after Nate made landfall and quickly moved inland. The Georgia team primarily worked outages in Jackson and George counties.
Mississippi Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), produces safe, reliable and environmentally responsible energy for nearly 187,000 customers in 23 southeast Mississippi counties. Mississippi Power ranked first in the Southeastern Electric Exchange’s 2016 Safety Performance Reports and is consistently recognized as an industry leader in reliability, customer service and safety. Visit our websites at www.mississippipower.com and www.mississippipowernews.com, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube.