Stay Back and Stay Safe
Working with electricity can be a dangerous job, especially for linemen. In fact, USA Today lists line repairers and installers as having some of the most dangerous jobs in the U.S. That's why, for WCEC, safety is our No. 1 priority. This is not an empty slogan: Over time, we have created a culture of putting our crews' safety and that of the community above all else.
Yes, we strive to deliver affordable and reliable electricity to you, but more importantly, we want our members to be safe and we want our employees to return home safely to their loved ones. This requires ongoing focus, dedication, vigilance-and your help!
Distractions Can Be Deadly
While we appreciate all kindnesses and interest in the work of our crews, we ask that you stay back and let them focus on the task at hand. Even routine work has the potential to be dangerous. It takes their full attention and that of their colleagues, who are also responsible for the team's safety. Distractions can have deadly consequences. If a lineman or one of our right-of-way crew members is on or near your property during a power outage, for vegetation management or for routine maintenance, please allow them ample room to work. These small accommodations help protect our crews-and you.
We recognize that for your family's safety, you want to make sure only authorized workers are on or near your property. You will recognize WCEC employees by their uniforms and the co-op's logo on our service trucks. You may also recognize our linemen because they live right here in our community. Too, occasionally we employ contractors for routine maintenance and they will likely have a contractor sign on their truck.
Slow Down and Move Over
In addition to giving linemen space while they are near your property, beginning September 1st, the Move Over Law will also pertain to utility works. It requires drivers to
vacate the lane closest to a utility vehicle or slowdown 20 mph below the posted speed (or 5 miles per hour below when the speed is posted at less than 25 mph) if a utility vehicle is stopped on the side of the road and is displaying blue and yellow lights.
Working alongside the road is dangerous as a work zone crash occurs every 5.4 minutes across the U.S., and 70% of those each day result in injuries. There is one fatality each week from these accidents. The linemans' focus is on the work at hand, not on the road, so we ask you to watch out for them.
Also, never text and drive-around work crews or any other time! That message can wait, and the momentary distraction can change lives forever.
Keep Poles Clear and Safe
Nails, staples and other attachments to utility poles not only get in linemens' way when they are trying to climb poles, but these foreign objects can also damage their safety gear, exposing them to possible shock or electrocution. Never post signs or attach anything to utility poles.
Guy wires may occasionally be inconveniently located, but please leave them alone. The wires provide support for poles, and removing or modifying them can weaken the system, causing poles, power lines and possibly linemen to come crashing to the ground.
WCEC's employees are looking out for you. Help them stay safe by returning the favor. Thanks!