ST. LOUIS – While St. Louis City issues a heat advisory for residents, Ameren Missouri crews are working through this heat to restore power quickly to those who lost it due to the weekend’s storms.
It’s hard being without power and it’s even harder when the heat and humidity are at unbearable levels like today. It’s also hard on the crews working to restore the power.
“I mean we’re all out here. The crews and the customers. I mean we definitely have a lot of empathy for our customers and we’re working as safe and fast as we can because we know this is such an inconvenience in hot weather,” said Patrick Smith, vice president of the division of operations at Ameren Missouri.
These crews in north St. Louis County are fixing lines and a power pole that got damaged in the storm when a tree from the easement fell into the line.
On days like today, they take frequent breaks and stay hydrated but most importantly, they’re prepared.
“Just a lot of training. The time to really understand what’s going on is not the day that the heat comes but we train all the time to be prepared for this and our crews they watch out for each other. They understand the signs of heat illness and heat stress,” said Smith.
Smith says they run into all kinds of situations that are complicated by the heat.
“We ran into one customer that was what we call an emergency alert customer and they’re using medical equipment to stay alive,” Smith said. “And in the interim, we took some steps that we powered their home with our truck while we went on with repairs.”
That customer, Harrison Davis Jr., woke up this morning without power and called an ambulance because he couldn’t breathe without his machine.
“Stayed there for like four or five hours but it was taking so long they put me on oxygen and everything but it was taking so long I decided it was best to just come back home,” Davis Jr. said. “These guys here gave me some air, charged back up my machine so I could breathe because I have COPD and that helped me out a lot.”
Ameren expects everyone’s power to be restored by the end of Monday and asks for continued patience.