The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been tasked with ordering critical materials to make up for the shortage of power restoration supplies across Puerto Rico.
After Hurricane Maria, the Corps of Engineers received a list from the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority with material requirements based on initial damage assessments.
This week, the Task Force Power Restoration opened two additional warehouse and laydown yard distribution points in Puerto Rico to help speed restoration work.
The new sites in Bayamon and Palo Seco will reduce the amount of time work crews spend on the road picking up and delivering materials across the island.
“With a surge of materials and an additional 1,500 lineworkers arriving by mid-January, USACE is expanding our capacity and ability to quickly distribute materials,” said Task Force Power Restoration Commander Col. John Lloyd. “These locations will enhance our ability to restore power to the people of Puerto Rico by expanding our reach and shortening delivery times.”
Bayamon Attorney Eliezer Aldarondo Ortiz, Bayamon City Mayor Ramon L. Rivera Cruz, Army Corps of Engineers Task Force Power Restoration Real Estate Chief Eric Sternberg, Army Corps of Engineers Puerto Rico Power Grid Program Director Jose Sanchez, and Task Force Power Restoration Commander Col. John Lloyd met Dec. 22 in Bayamon, Puerto Rico, to discuss the use of city land space at the Bayamon sports complex for storage of materials used in the power restoration mission, including utility poles and other power grid supplies.
The city is allowing the Corps use of its property and infrastructure to help expedite delivery of needed power grid supplies and equipment across the island.
USACE Task Force Power Quality Assurance Manager Andrew Imig and Palo Seco Warehouse Manager Greg Thomas conducted an inventory of newly delivered materials at the Palo Seco warehouse. The warehouse is a joint distribution point with our partners the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA)
In addition, USACE is leveraging relationships with electrical warehouses and utility companies to purchase small volumes of critical material. The Corps of Engineers has taken on the task of expediting the delivery and distribution of supplies. Currently, USACE has ordered 326 items, including poles, cable, transformers, fuses, towers, and insulators to fulfill requirements. This is a joint effort with PREPA to include an assessment of what is needed and what is in PREPA’s warehouses.
Within the next few weeks, the Corps of Engineers plans to expand the warehouses and laydown yards to seven, to include Ponce, Palo Seco, and Bayamon. USACE works through the Defense Logistics Agency to procure material from manufacturers.
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