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Wisconsin utility workers helping to restore power to places hit by Sandy


MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - Utility workers throughout Wisconsin have been heading east to help restore power to places hit by Superstorm Sandy.

They’ll help clear fallen power lines, replace damaged poles, and rebuild power distribution systems.

As of Wednesday morning, 8 million customers were in the dark in 17 states.

We Energies restored power Tuesday to around 500 customers hit by strong winds in eastern Wisconsin – and then 25 employees from that utility were sent to Detroit today to help 40,000 homes get their juice back. From there, they’ll head further east.

Wisconsin Power and Light of Madison expects about 30 of its workers to spend two weeks in upstate New York. Power and Light’s owner, Alliant Energy, says it’s a payback for the help it received in dealing with a major ice storm in 2007, and heavy flooding in 2008.

Xcel Energy of Eau Claire sent 8 employees out East. And a group of municipal utility workers is helping 100,000 customers in Allentown Pennsylvania get their power back. Those utilities are in Sun Prairie, Stoughton, Oconomowoc, Cedarburg, Kaukauna, Menasha, Shawano, and Marshfield. 

Wisconsin Public Service confirms they are dispatching 20 line technicians and 3 support staff to assist in Connecticut.  They leave Wisconsin Thursday morning.