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70 SoCal Edison trucks head east via C-17s

November 1, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Disaster relief is heading to the East Coast with support from the U.S. Air Force. Early Thursday morning under a thick layer of fog, airmen and women at March Air Reserve Base began loading the first of 14 military transport planes with Southern California Edison trucks.

Lt. Col. John Jost will pilot the C-17 dubbed the "Spirit of Ronald Reagan." He and his crew loaded the transport, which can carry four to five Edison trucks at a time.

Southern California Edison is sending 70 utility vehicles to the region in an effort to restore power in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Originally, Edison had planned to send its trucks via a ground convoy.

"The change was made because of the efficiency, as well as the ability, to get there quicker," said Raymond Hicks of Southern California Edison.

Under a mutual aid agreement with New York-based Consolidated Edison, or Con Ed, SoCal Edison will also send 207 employees and contractors. But first, they must get their equipment in place.

Once the C-17 takes off, it will take them roughly five hours to reach the East Coast. Once there, they'll unload the trucks and begin the task of helping to get the East Coast back up and running.

"They'll be assigned in several different states and areas," Hicks said.

By Friday morning, Edison crews can begin fanning out and help bring hope to the millions left in the dark by a monstrous storm.


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