As millions are without power, State Technical College grads head to the southeast

State Technical College (KRCG 13)

Hurricane Irma left more than five million customers without power in the southeast, calling for the help of linemen from across the country.

A number of local linemen have headed that way, including four State Technical College of Missouri graduates, according to school officials. Those graduates worked in Houston following Hurricane Harvey and are expected to head to Florida to help clean up after Hurricane Irma.

"Storm jobs are very dangerous," said David Peterson, Chairman of the Electrical Distribution Systems department at State Tech. "You're on foreign land, you don't know where the power is coming from, where the source is, you don't know if people are running generators. Storm jobs are extremely generous but that's where we get our satisfaction out of being linemen, people appreciate getting the power back on."

Current State Tech student, Andrew Batson, said he understands post-storm work can get crazy. "A lot of people say you're not a real lineman until you work a hurricane or an ice storm."

State Tech's Electrical Distribution Systems Program includes learning how to safely climb utility poles, building and maintaining electrical distribution systems, and performing pole top rescues, according to school officials.

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