Electric line workers compete in annual rodeo
Ponca City Now - October 15, 2015 1:54 pm
About 10 crews from various cities in Oklahoma sent teams to compete in a variety of events to show their skills.
Tom Dougherty, director of Training and Safety for the Municipal Electric Systems of Oklahoma, Inc., said safety is always the first priority in any work or training session involving power lines and poles.
"Everything we do, we treat it as simulated energized lines to sharpen our safety skills," Dougherty said.
Each city’s team had access to four of the poles at Dan Moran Park during the competition, and four poles will be used for mutual aid assignments. Oklahoma’s rodeo is the only competition that includes an event to provide lineworkers the opportunity to build relationships which could be beneficial during real-life mutual aid situations.
MESO includes 63 cities in Oklahoma and 12 cities in Arkansas and Missouri, Dougherty said.
He said the program demonstrates its success in its numbers. He said the last municipality’s major contact with a live line was in 1986.