Team restoring power to Santa Nella residents

October 3, 2013 5:45:20 PM PDT
A team of people is joining forces to restore power to the more than two dozen Santa Nella residents who have been without it for nearly two months.

It all started when fire ripped through an abandoned mobile home, knocking out the power source for 33 mobile homes. Until Thursday, all of those people thought their future was going to be in the dark.

Action News spotted a number of electricians, working against the clock to repair a meter main and replace the wires that supply power to each mobile home. Their time, effort and the equipment they're using has all been donated.

Frustrated residents called Assembly member Adam Gray (D-Merced). They'd been without electricity ever since flames destroyed their power source back in August. It would collectively cost them thousands to restore power to the 33 affected mobile homes.

Joseph Corralejo has been living off a generator ever since. He said, "$78 thousand is too much for working people to come up with the money right away."

Gray called contractors and an electrical industry union who took on the cost and the repair.

Billy Powell with IBEW said, "That's one thing we try to do is give back is give back to the community so whenever we see individuals in need we try to participate and do what we can."

In the meantime, Joseph and his neighbors are sharing a generator, running extension cords between their homes and helping each other live through the darkness. While he's adapted well, Joseph says he's ready and excited to have a normal life. "This is what your government can do and is supposed to do, this is what it's for."

Assembly member Adam Gray said, "It's the best part of my job." And tells Action News the next step is to make sure it doesn't happen again.

Electrical workers expect the power to be back on by early next week.


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