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Power Line Technician  What They Do

Just the Facts

Insider Info

dotThe work of a power line technician involves erecting and maintaining power poles and towers and connecting electricity distribution and transmission networks.

dotTechnicians must also inspect and test overhead and underground power lines. Since they deal with high voltages, these workers must follow safety practices and procedures.

"If you make a mistake at 1,300 volts, you'll fry. Safety is a first priority," says Wendy Kennedy. She is a power line technician in New Jersey.

dotAn average workday for a power line technician is usually about eight hours, starting in the morning and finishing in the late afternoon. They may work overtime if something happens to the distribution system.

"In storm trouble, the company can call you and you must go to work, or you would lose your job," says Kennedy. "In a state of emergency, you're an essential employee and you must work."

dotPower line technicians work for energy, electric, power and other utility companies. Some also work for independent line contractors.

The work is done mainly outdoors and in all types of weather. It involves climbing and operating at significant heights, often in confined spaces.

The job can be dangerous and requires a high level of physical prowess. A person with a disability may want to take these factors into consideration before pursuing this career.

At a Glance

Keep the power going

  • Safety is number one in this job
  • Technicians work outdoors in all kinds of weather
  • You'll need to finish high school and do an apprenticeship