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Lineman Appreciation Day is April 8

 Lineman Appreciation Day is April 8

On Monday, April 8, National Lineman Appreciation Day, Sam Houston Electric Cooperative honors the employees who keep the lights on. You see them stationed in the sky, in the partial enclosure of a truck’s bucket, working diligently to maintain lines and restore power after a storm. What may not be evident from the ground, though, is all the equipment a line technician needs to do his or her job safely. A lineman’s personal protective equipment includes:

  • Hard hats worn at all times for protection from falling objects.
  • Arc-rated clothing that self-extinguishes, limiting injuries from burns.
  • Insulated rubber gloves, always worn with a pair of leather gloves over them to prevent punctures to the rubber beneath.
  • Safety glasses that protect against loose debris and other hazards when working on electric lines and rights-of-way.

Linemen also may wear equipment belts, tool pouches, safety straps and other equipment. Those additional items usually weigh about 50 pounds altogether, a heavy burden while 40 feet in the air, surrounded by dangerously high voltage.

A less obvious component of the lineworker’s experience is all the time and training that goes into preparing for the job. From classroom training programs to apprenticeships that continue training on the job, the Cooperative is dedicated to ensuring that linemen are experts.

Recently, several Sam Houston EC line technicians completed a week-long transformer class at the Cooperative’s training facility. The course is one of several Sam Houston EC hosts throughout the year in conjunction with our statewide association, Texas Electric Cooperatives.

“Our employees are the best asset we have,” said Gary White, training and safety coordinator. “It only makes sense to provide training so they can be the best (line technicians) they can be, and to be safe doing it. We owe that to them, the Cooperative and our members.”

Next time you see a line technician, be sure to thank him or her for their time and dedication in honing this vital skill, along with their selfless application of it in service to our community. Our lives would be pretty dim without them!