Montecito Mudslides

Santa Barbara County California- Local 132 Visit

          After the deployment of our members to Montecito, I visited the mudslide area personally to support our members and to see for myself the conditions in which they were having to work.

           Having watched the news and the pictures they show you sort of get an idea of the severity of the damage. It wasn’t until we got close to the area that it started to sink in how massive the damage and outages were by the police presence everywhere. Simply put if you were not from the utilities or a first responders you were not allowed into the city.

            After passing the tight security we got to the gathering area where we spoke to the employees from our Distribution Department and they shared their stories on what they were seeing out there. Hard to imagine boulders as big as cars just flowing down taking everything in their path along with the wall of mud. Our Distribution crews were out there doing repairs, shutting off meters, locating leaks and anything else that was required to help.

          From there we drove to the staging area for Customer Service were our members were preparing to start restores where Distribution had already done their repairs. After, we were able to survey the damage driving around to the areas where the biggest damage occurred. I have to tell you that watching it on the news did not fully capture the severity of the destruction. It was like something out of a movie.

           It made me very proud as President of UWUA Local 132 to join and represent this group of Distribution and Customer Service members of who very willing and unselfishly left their homes and their families with just a few hours of notice to go help in the recovery of this disaster area, and per the Gas Company without any accidents or incidents under extreme working conditions.

We are the safest!