A plea from fire-damaged Pateros: 'Whoever those powers are, please step forward and bring it on'

PATEROS, Wash. -- Many residents of this small town devastated by the wildfires are happy that President Obama has approved emergency federal assistance to help get power restored in the area -- but also say they could use electricity now.

"There's just not enough resources here yet," resident Teri England said Wednesday. "I don`t know what it takes. Even after it is declared, an area that needs the help, I don`t know what it takes to get the help here."

But, she added, the Okanogan County Public Utilities District crews have been working around the clock to post new power poles.

"The PUD is amazing ... and has been going like crazy," said England, who, like most people in Pateros, has been without power since last Thursday.

In the meantime, the people of Pateros are pulling together.

The school has been turned into a relief center, where folks can get needed supplies.

"It is amazing, it is humbling to see people's generosity," said Suzette Ellis, who helps run the center.

For England and others, that's a great relief. But England said more help is needed and fast.

"Whoever those powers are, please step forward and bring it on," England said.

While driving through fire-devastated areas, it was amazing to see just how many power poles have been replaced already.

And folks are grateful for the work of the PUD crews.