CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Duke Energy celebrates the power behind the power on National Lineworker Appreciation Day on April 18. The annual recognition spotlights lineworkers’ role in powering the lives of millions of people across the U.S.
Whether perched in a bucket or scaling a towering pole, their work ensures that electricity keeps flowing to power vital infrastructure from hospitals, schools and water treatment facilities to businesses, industries and our everyday energy needs at home.
Their jobs are not for the faint-hearted.
“While the view from the top of the pole may change each day, the essential service lineworkers provide has not,” said Scott Batson, senior vice president and chief distribution officer. “Powering our customers and communities is the most important job we have, and I am proud of the unwavering commitment of our lineworkers serving on the front lines throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, even when severe weather struck.”
Record-breaking hurricane season
Duke Energy lineworkers battled a record-breaking Atlantic hurricane season with eight hurricane deployments to restore outages in the company’s service areas, as well as neighboring utilities across the nation the past year. Crews also tackled outages from high winds and ice storms, often working in extreme conditions to restore service to customers.
“As severe weather has increased in frequency and intensity, line technicians serve an increasingly essential role in maintaining reliable service every day, improving resiliency to restore service faster, and enabling cleaner energy options and a lower carbon future for customers,” added Batson.
Building grid of the future
Lineworkers have not only kept the power flowing to our customers and communities, and supported neighboring utilities – they’ve also continued to build the energy grid of the future.
Lineworkers are installing self-healing technology that automatically detects power outages and automatically reroutes power when outages occur. This smart technology helps reduce the number of outages and the duration of an outage, by restoring power often in less than a minute. Over the next few years, Duke Energy expects to install enough self-healing technology to serve most customers.
Crews are also upgrading poles and lines that are stronger, making our system more resistant to severe weather, and placing outage-prone lines underground. The reliability improvements we are making in our service areas will improve the grid and better serve customers.
As grid improvement work continues, line technician training programs and jobs can be found here: www.duke-energy.com/lineworker
More than 7,800 Duke Energy and contract lineworkers are part of the Duke Energy team. They are responsible for constructing, operating and maintaining equipment and more than 300,000 miles of power lines in Duke Energy’s service territories – that is enough to wrap around the Earth 12 times.
Those who wish to honor lineworkers and their families are encouraged to use the hashtag #ThankALineworker on social media.
Lineworker b-roll, interviews and photography are available here:
And, for a letter from a lineman to his wife serving from the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic, visit illumination here.
Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, and 3,000 megawatts through its nonregulated Duke Energy Renewables unit.
Duke Energy is transforming its customers’ experience, modernizing the energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure unit’s regulated utilities serve approximately 7.7 million retail electric customers in six states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. The Gas Utilities and Infrastructure unit distributes natural gas to more than 1.6 million customers in five states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The Duke Energy Renewables unit operates wind and solar generation facilities across the U.S., as well as energy storage and microgrid projects.
Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2020 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list, and Forbes’ 2019 “America’s Best Employers” list. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
Media contact: 800.559.3853
SOURCE Duke Energy