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Powerful Living


My Lineman is My Hero Drawing Contest Winners


Safety fi rst, safety for all


From the Editor “ I


5th & 4th Grade Division: Emily Goosman, Age 11, East Central Oklahoma Electric Cooperative


t’s dangerous! Don’t touch it!” These are words we all have said at one point, warning children not to touch electric outlets. Have you ever cautioned any- one or been warned about not using elec- trical appliances by water? We all know: electricity is a powerful and invisible force. No one can touch it, smell it or see it—but if you come in contact with it, there’s no doubt you will feel it. For most of us, being careful around electricity is not a con-


Anna Politano Managing Editor, Oklahoma Living


3rd & 2nd Grade Division: Codi Reid, Age 8, Central Rural Electric Cooperative


cern as we go about our daily routines. However, there are those in our midst who come close to this “force” every day, putting their lives on the line so that you and I can enjoy the conve- niences of electric power. In the electric cooperative circle, we call these brave men and women our heroes. They are our line- men, standing on the front lines to keep the lights on. The month of May is designated as Electrical Safety Month. Learning to stay safe around electricity is a must for anyone, but for a lineman, it’s a way of life. When they answer the call to serve in the “line” business, they agree to a life pursuit of safety. Oklahoma’s 28 distribution electric cooperatives employ nearly 1,100 linemen. To line workers, safety is at the core of everything they do. Through the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives’ (OAEC) Safety & Loss Control program, they go through rigorous training events and detailed inspec- tions to ensure they have safety accountability. In addition to an Annual Safety Summit that addresses safety and best practices, the statewide association also offers Crew Inspections to member cooperatives. Each cooperative that has joined the OAEC Self-Insured Fund receives an independent crew inspection free of charge to ensure the co-op’s crews are following appropriate safety guidelines. This independent in- spection is in addition to the safety assessments each coopera- tive already conducts on its own.


1st Grade & Kindergarten Division: Faith Dresser, Age 8, Cotton Electric Cooperative


We received numerous entries for the Lineman Drawing Contest. If viewing this edition online, click here to see several great Honorable Mention drawings featuring: My Lineman is My Hero! Access our digital edition at www.ok-living. coop or fi nd our FREE app at the Apple Newsstand, Google Play or Amazon.


If you ask any lineman, they will tell you they love their jobs–despite the life-threatening risks that come with the terri- tory. However, there’s nothing they want more than to return safely to their families at the end of each workday. With a record of no fatalities since 2008, and claims that have steadily been reduced the last three years, it’s no doubt they are accomplish- ing this goal. This Electrical Safety Month, OKL encourages you to edu- cate yourself and those around you about electric safety. On Page 9, you will fi nd a helpful article from SafeElectricity.org providing information about several electric safety measures. On Page 20, get ready to fi nd yourself both inspired and thank- ful for the sacrifi ces families of linemen go through day in and day out. After all, we know these men and women are putting their lives on the line each day so that you and I can enjoy the comforts brought by electricity. Yes, electricity is a powerful, invisible force, but so is our gratitude for these heroes. Stay safe, linemen—and thank you for keeping the lights on.


MAY 2014 5


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