National Grid Workers Set Up Camp at State Park

Temporary compound of tents, bath and dining facilities set up at Sunken Meadow State Park to house out of state restoration workers.

A mini-city of tents, showers, bathroom and dining facilities has been erected for work weary out-of-state crews at Sunken Meadow State Park.

The camp is one of nine around Long Island set up to feed and house restoration workers. According to Wendy Ladd, spokeswoman for National Grid, there are 350 restoration workers housed at the camp, which is run by National Grid.

The facility is completely self-sustaining with personnel for cooking and running the camp. A hand written sign set up outside the camp proclaimed, "National Grid, thank you and God bless, love Long Island."

The crews, made up of tree workers and linesmen, are dispatched to surrounding towns, often leaving in the early morning hours and not returning, in some cases until after midnight or later. The restoration workers housed at the camp come from all around, including Massachusetts, Tennessee and Canada.

The National Guard is set up in an adjacent parking lot and has helped to secure the fuel tankers used to gas up the repair trucks and generators used to run the site.

According to John Bruckner, National Grid president, 6,400 out of a total of 15,000 restoration workers present on Long Island are from out of state or Canada. Bruckner said in a call Monday afternoon that workers will continue the effort to restore power as well as work on permanent repairs to the system, which saw many temporary repairs in the effort to bring customers back up.

Ladd said there are tentative plans to demobilize Sunken Meadow next week.

Mary Ahern November 13, 2012 at 01:01 PM
We were wondering where all the out of town workers were staying while they helped restore our power. The crews from Illinois and Indiana helped to restore power to us in record time. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
Ann November 13, 2012 at 03:45 PM
Yes we should all thank the out of town crews - they did an awesome job restoring power to smithtown area. - LIPA had no time they are busy doing a rap song on Channel 12 news - can you beat that.
Diana November 14, 2012 at 01:19 AM
Thank you to all of the workers for sacrificing your personal time to help get Long Island back up and running! Keep an eye out for a cookie delivery Friday from Girl Scout troop 1273 as a huge thank you for your help.
J November 14, 2012 at 02:25 AM
Oh my goodness, they're sleeping in tents in this cold weather? They are here to help us; I hope those tents are heated. Anything we can do to make their stay easier?
Ro Chifano November 14, 2012 at 09:01 AM
The LIPA song was performed by employees of WBLI! Get it right before casting stones!!!!
Jennifer Sloat (Editor) November 14, 2012 at 12:35 PM
@J- the tents are heated.
Jennifer Sloat (Editor) November 14, 2012 at 12:38 PM
@Diana- What a great troop!
Irondog November 14, 2012 at 02:12 PM
All lines crews were awesome. Including the LIPA crews. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. GOD Bless you all... Saturday, I stopped by a crew from Kentucky and Alabama and thanked them and also acknowledged them being away from their families for so long. I found out that some of the out of town crews were also staying in the firehouse by me. I asked them what kind of beer they like and I went out and bought some and told a bunch to stop by that night and have a few beers on me. They did come by later on to thank me for my generosity on their way out to lunch. I also offered for them to stay in my house if they weren't comfy at the firehouse. They were shocked at such generosity from a total stranger. Even though most downstaters are a$$holes, we need to prove there are some good ones around. (Before someone starts bashing my statement, YES, I'm born and bred on Long Island, but speak the truth. Long Islanders need to come back to reality these days and I hope this past experience is humbling to those that need to be humbled). Oh yeah, I'm shocked nobody complained about the "National Grid, thank you and God bless, love Long Island." sign that was posted by the camp. We know how everyone hates when GOD is mentioned these days. But too bad. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You.
Jennifer L. November 15, 2012 at 11:45 PM
Lol I made that sign! They were wonderful in sacrificing time away from their homes in order to help us. I met several of the guys and they were all just the nicest people.


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