Many Tulsa Workers Will Welcome in the New Year on the Job

Wednesday, December 15th 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

The change of the century is just a little over two weeks away and many of us will mark the moment at work. Many different companies will have extra employees on hand. Thousands of people in Tulsa's workforce will be at work when the clock chimes the beginning of 2000.

Dozens of companies, especially those with round-the-clock operations, are adding staff to monitor potential problems from the Y2K computer bug. "I won't have to work, but we will have people at Public Service Company of Oklahoma working for a couple of days afterward to make sure that everything goes smoothly," said P-S-O employee David Dickson.

The Williams Company is one of downtown Tulsa's largest employers. An employee from nearly every department at Williams will be on the job when the clock strikes midnight. "We're expecting about 200 extra people to be either working or on call during that time,” said Williams spokesman Brent Coussens. “We really do feel that we're prepared. We think we have done everything we needed to do from testing to putting together continuity plans, and talking with our suppliers and our customers. We're feeling confident," he explained.

Since so many companies will have extra employees at work, New Years Eve won't seem quite the holiday it might have been if it was not for the potential Y2K computer problem. To make working on News Year's Eve a little more pleasant, many companies are allowing employees to bring their spouses to work and some companies are catering meals for their late night employees. "We certainly realize this is an extraordinary situation to have people working who wouldn't normally be working at that time of the evening,” said Oklahoma Natural Gas spokesman Stan Whiteford. “We're allowing some flexibility for people who are working. We might have some meals or pizza brought in, but it certainly won't be a party atmosphere around here.”

Oklahoma Natural Gas plans to have hundreds of employees on the job or on standby in case of problems. O-N-G’s employees and other companies employees will welcome in the new year by punching the time clock.