Area Help Heads to Southwest Florida for Hurricane Charley Relief

About three dozen Gulf Power employees left here Saturday morning in a convoy to the Sarasota area. From there they will move into the hardest hit areas to help get the power restored. They say they will be there at least two weeks helping other power companies getting the electricity running again.

Six hundred Florida National Guardsmen from the 3rd Battalion in Panama City left here Saturday night in another convoy to southwest Florida. They will help provide security and other relief in the aftermath of the hurricane.

Half a dozen workers from the Central Panhandle Chapter of the American Red Cross in Panama City are already in the devastated area providing all kinds of relief.

Sheriff's Deputies from Bay and Okaloosa County are also on scene helping to provide additional security for police in that area who are overburdened following Charley.

All of the local headed to south Florida say they're doing it to return the favor. It was those areas who provided help to Panama CT and Bay County, along with other Panhandle areas, following the devastating Hurricane Opal in October 1995.