Weathering the storm: Trillium CNG resilient through Hurricane Harvey, Irma

Posted September 13, 2017
helicopter rescue during harvey

When disaster strikes, work is often the last thing on people's mind, but at Trillium CNG, we don't see it as work. We see the thousands of people who need assistance. It's even more impactful when it directly affects your own. Trillium's headquarters are located in Houston, and employees there faced damages to personal property, power outages and evacuations on top of flooding at work during Hurricane Harvey earlier this month.

"During our first conference call after the storm, the first order of business was to make sure we've heard from everyone and to discuss how we might help those who have lost clothes, belongings, cars, and homes," Ashley Duplechien, marketing specialist for Trillium, said. "The second was to congratulate the operations team for keeping our stations online and safe. I'm humbled by the outpouring of love and support I've witnessed in my home, within our team, and from business partners across the United States."

trillium office flooded during harvey

Flood waters fill stairways at the Trillium CNG office in Houston.

The ability to work remotely allowed personnel to stay connected and ensure our stations were ready to fuel throughout the storm.

"We had zero down time at our support center; staff worked remotely until we could get back in the office," Joshua Edge, director of Trillium CNG station operations, said. "Our maintenance team was positioned around Houston ready to respond as needed. One station was down for a matter of hours due to a local power outage, but other than that we ran without issues."

While the Trillium team was handling business, they were multitasking to help displaced co-workers, family, and friends. Employees stayed in constant contact to ensure others were safe. They opened their homes to one another and continue to look for ways to lend a hand.

"We have been so fortunate, all things considered," said Chris Robertson, Director of Accounting and Administration. "The Love family's generous $1 million donation to assist employees and the community at large is a huge help to everyone. We have also had our own employees helping each other, with many spontaneous mud-shoveling and carpet-removal parties going on. We are actually now back to a position we are more attuned to - how can we help?"

houston office flooded during harvey

A stop sign outside the parking garage at the Houston offices is barely visible.

Giving back has already begun thanks to the generosity of one of our vendors. SafeRack, which has been a staunch supporter of our Drive for a Child fundraiser for Texas Children's Hospital, approached Duplechien about helping employees in the area. Because they had witnessed the Love's Family of Companies' passion for giving, they wanted to return the favor. John Edwards, from SafeRack, loaded a truck with hard-to-find items ranging from bottled water to clothes to baby supplies and drove from South Carolina to Houston. Love's employees in the Houston area, including Trillium, Musket, Love's store and Gemini team members, were notified of the opportunity and instructed to meet at Love's 315 in Houston to pick up what they needed to help get back on their feet.

donation pick up at loves in houston

Employees and their families collect necessary supplies at Love's 315 courtesy of SafeRack.

"The supply distribution was a massive success," Duplechien said. "We can't thank John enough. Also, we appreciate everyone who pitched in to make this possible.

love's trillium team help with saferack donation for harvey

SafeRack and the team at Love's 315 work together to distribute a truckload of emergency items.

What felt like hours after Harvey triage, Hurricane Irma was beating on Florida's door. With multiple Trillium stations in Florida and Georgia, we needed to prepare to serve our Customers.

Our teams were ready to maintain station operations to the best of their ability.

"Our Mulberry, Florida, location sustained minor damage due to the 100+ mph winds," Edge said. "But again within hours, most of our stations were back up and running."

Through it all, we stuck together to ensure everyone was taken care of. Now, the Trillium teams look to return to their normal lives.