Learning line clearance to retain electric reliability

Severe weather conditions wreak havoc on trees and the electrical system. It is not unusual for branches to cause power outages, and Illinois electric cooperatives plan ahead by performing line clearance to help prevent the loss of power due to trees.

Each year, the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives’ safety and training department holds Utility Line Clearance School (ULCS), a weeklong series of courses and hands-on training designed to accommodate both experienced and inexperienced employees who wish to become more proficient in the field of line clearance and right-of-way management.

The Southern Illinois Artisans Building in Wittington hosted this year’s ULCS May 15-19. The hands-on approach allowed students to learn new skills and apply them to work scenarios in the field while supervised and coached by instructors.

Participants were expected to demonstrate procedures set forth in OSHA regulations and ANSI guidelines, as well as be competent in their application and overall safety, upon completion of the school.