Workers head to New Jersey to help with Irene cleanup - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Workers head to New Jersey to help with Irene cleanup

Cleaning up after Hurricane Irene means a long week of work for crews from Townsend Tree Service, based in Parker City Indiana.

"The biggest issue we have right now is the water," explained Townsend Safety Manager James Fitzgerald, a native of Lesterville.  "Everything is so flooded, that we just can't get to part of it yet."

While Fitzgerald and his 50 crews work in and around Phillipsburg, New Jersey, colleague Jeremy DeBeaux and his guys are stationed in nearby Belvidere.  DeBeaux is from Dexter and works out of Townsend's district office in Fredericktown.  He says he's there with guys from Bloomfield, Fredericktown, Farmington, and Ironton.

"They've got trees all laid down on the power lines", DeBeaux describes in Belvidere.  "They've dragged a bunch of them down.  They've got broken poles and cross arms.  We're just trying to clean them out so they can put them back up."

The Townsend crews work 16 hour days and expect to be gone through the weekend.

Fitzgerald says the work is tough, but it makes them feel good to help a community get back on its feet.

"It's a great feeling, you know, just to be able to be a part of it and help the people," he said.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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