As of Monday, 450,000 people in Puerto Rico are still in the dark. They've been without power since last September when Hurricane Maria slammed into the island.

Big companies like Xcel Energy are now sending crews to restore the light. Some of them are coming from Colorado.

Eight trucks and 30 employees including Mark Newby are headed to the island on Monday. They return on February 19.

That's three weeks of picking up phone lines and restoring infrastructure.

Mark is afraid a lot of that time will be spent picking up fallen trees and natural debris that still litter the ground here.

"You think about the pole lines that go down there," explained Mark, "They’re blown over into the vegetation so you have to have people in there trimming the trees, cutting you a path through the pole line to get in there."

Mark can only hope this will be done by the time they get to Puerto Rico to work.

"We don't know yet if that's been done in that area," said Mark.

Xcel Energy is planning to work in Caguas, a mountainous and remote region of the island where the storm caused a lot of damage.

"If you talk about restoration efforts in the city, it goes faster, up in the mountains we have to go up and down hills," said Mark when he was comparing the efforts on the island to what the crew is used to here in Colorado. "No different except a lot more vegetation."

A challenging task, to restore the power on an island devastated by a hurricane. One, Mark says, is worth it. If it means he'll help restore some normalcy too.

"Just imagine being without power this long if you were here in the states, I mean they have to be anxious and happy that we’re coming over to help them," said Mark.

Xcel Energy worked with FEMA, the Army Corps of Engineers and the electric distribution organization in Puerto Rico.

The Army Corps will reimburse Xcel for their work on the island.

We'll keep you posted on their trip.