The Electric Lineworker

Electric lineworkers are really tough! It's a dangerous business and to be a lineworker takes a lot of training at special schools like the Southeast Lineworker Training Center in Trenton, Georgia. Men and women at these schools learn how to handle electricity safely and train to work on utility poles, transmission wires, substations, electrical service boxes and even how to rescue a fellow lineworker if he or she gets hurt.

Safety Equipment

Utility workers and lineworkers have to be extra careful when handling electricity. They use special protective gear and tools such as safety glasses and insulated gloves to keep from getting shocked or burned. Lineworkers also use special equipment to help them climb utility poles like boots with special climber attachments and straps to help them hold on.

Climbing Tools and Safety Equipment

Hover over the numbers with your mouse for a close-up view of the lineworker's equipment.

Did you know that lineworkers even have their own language? Take a look at a few of the words they use on the job and what they mean.

alligator:a tie stick
baloney:cable
baloney bender:cable bender
banjo:a type of shovel
cherry picker:a bucket truck
chicken catcher:an armsling
fuzz box:noisy tester
gopher:a "go for this" and "go for that" helper
ground hog:a linesman's helper
knuckle busteran adjustable wrench
leroy:a generator
lid:a hard hat
moles:an underground line crew
pickles:wire connectors
snake or reptile:an insulating line hose
walking crab:a lever lift

What you can do to help keep electric lineworkers safer

Don’t hang birdhouses, basketball hoops, or any other objects on electrical poles. The lineworker will have a hard time climbing around them and could get caught or trip while climbing.

Don’t hang or post signs on utility poles. These could cause the lineworker to slip while climbing.

Don’t landscape around poles with flower boxes, bushes or any type of lawn benches or birdbaths. Keep the area free and clear.

Don't play, hang or throw objects on any electrical equipment. Doing so could cause you to get hurt and even cause an outage that can affect your whole town!