BOISE -- It's been four days since Superstorm Sandy slammed into the Northeast, washing away homes, destroying lives, and knocking out power to millions. Thousands of workers from across the country were brought in to help restore that power.
"There's more than 50,000 men, right now, back on the East Coast helping with restoration efforts," said Gil Maiuro with Northwest Lineman College in Meridian.
Maiuro says he's been in contact with seven different East Coast power companies, as they put out the call for linemen to not only get the power back on, but then help rebuild and re-engineer entire power grids. "This storm that hit on the East Coast has caused companies to really take a hard look at their infrastructure. And, a lot of the restoration is going to go on long after the storm has hit."
Boise's Justin Evans is feeling the ripples from Sandy's impact too. He runs a wholesale drop-shipping company, Guardian Survival Gear. "Many of our resellers called us, and said, 'Hey, there's a storm heading this way, can you help?' So, we worked with our logistics companies to see what we could get there, and it was a 50/50 chance if it would make it or not."
For many in the East, the survival gear couldn't make it there in time. But Evans says people from around the world are still ringing the phone off the hook, preparing for potential disasters in their own towns. "We're getting calls from people in South America, and as far away as Australia/New Zealand, hearing about the disaster here, hearing about the hurricane, and it's a wake up call."
Maiuro says a class will graduate in the next few weeks. He says his students from the East Coast are already looking at jobs over there, along with some students from here in West who are attracted by the opportunities.