A new effort to turn the lights back on for thousands got underway on Sunday afternoon. An estimated 500 volunteers are on a mission to help neighbors Power Up. The News On 6's Chris Wright reports Operation Power Up is focused on finding damaged weather heads, that's the entry point where electrical lines come into your home. Once power is restored, the lights won't come back on for residents with the damaged weather heads, so officials say it's important to begin working on them as quickly as possible.
Like most Sundays, its congregation crammed into GUTS Church, but this week, they prayed for the victims of the ice storm and signed up for Operation Power Up.
"We're going to get people's power back on, and we're going to get that debris cleared up, I just have to say thanks to the citizens who've shown what Tulsa is all about," said >Mayor Kathy Taylor.
From there, the volunteers splintered into smaller groups, each of which went to one of ten different fire stations. Officials there briefed them on safety protocol. They were then assigned an area of the city to canvas. The volunteers then hit the streets, going door-to-door, to document who has power and who doesn't. They also kept an eye out for damaged weather heads.
"We've got to help others before we help ourselves. We've taken the opportunity with this disaster, it's an opportunity for us to show people who Christians are, who they're supposed to be," said volunteer John Bunn.
The idea on Sunday was to take care of the paperwork so officials don't have to. The goal was to find the residents who need the most help, so professionals can get to them first.
While most of the neighborhood near 41st & Utica have their power back, they appreciated the fact that the volunteers were looking out for them.
"There's a lot of old people in the neighborhood who really have no one. They really need the help, and it makes me feel good that there are people out there who will do that," said Meghan Bretz.
Volunteers also asked residents to sign a waiver that will allow crews onto their property if they need to perform work there.
Those who have debris on their lines or a damaged weather head are encouraged to call the Mayor Action Center at 596-2100.