PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - It's been 16 years since Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans. But now, crews from the Valley and southern Arizona are making the journey to lend a hand once again.
On Tuesday, 20 employees from Cox Communications left the Valley for Louisiana to help with recovery efforts from Hurricane Ida. The crews will be assisting in restoring cable infrastructure run by Cox in Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Because Ida knocked out much of the state's power grid, the technicians will be coordinating their repairs alongside the power company. A spokesperson says 90% of people in those cities are still without power.
Shawn Duncan, the VP of field operations for Cox in Arizona, says people could still be without power and internet for weeks, but hopes the extra boots on the ground will speed up the process. An additional 100 Cox employees from Arizona and neighboring states will eventually be traveling to Louisiana to help.
Duncan says it will be a lot of hard work, but their employees are eager to assist.
"Well, we had the conversation at 8:00 yesterday morning, and within 24 hours, we had our 20 volunteers, and we have a list of others who want to come as soon as we can accommodate them," Duncan said.
The team arrived in Louisiana Thursday and got right to work. "It's going great honestly, everyone is amazing!!" said Noah Foote, Arizona Director of Field Operations for Cox.
There is no official end date, but this first crew hopes to return within a month.