March 2, 2012–The Florida House of Representatives introduced a resolution honoring the thousands of men and women risking their lives everyday ensuring the reliable delivery of electricity throughout the state.  The resolution, sponsored by Representative Seth McKeel, designated August 26th,, 2012 as “Lineworker Appreciation Day” in the state of Florida.  August 26th is a poignant date with particular significance for a Lakeland resident whose husband, Marc, a lineman for Lakeland Electric, died tragically on that date in 2002.

It’s so easy to take our energy industry for granted,” noted Lakeland Representative McKeel, the resolution’s sponsor.  “But when the power goes out, we rely on utility lineworkers to quickly get things back to normal.  They are, literally, risking their lives every day on our behalf.”

Lineworkers are truly the “first responders”, responsible for restoration efforts following any blackout, accident or other disaster.   Linemen are first on the scene to ensure the area is safe before any other agency’s personnel can perform their necessary functions.  When you stop to consider the nation’s power grid, the essential role of the lineman comes into sharper focus.  Collectively, they are responsible for maintaining the nation’s more than five million miles of power lines in all kinds of weather, and under hazardous conditions, 24/7, 365 days a year.

In the body of the resolution, it is stated “Florida’s lineworkers, in particular, have demonstrated outstanding skill and dedication by winning numerous awards and participating in multiple lineworker competitions, most notably the annual Florida Municipal Electric Association Lineman Competition, in which lineworkers through the United States compete to determine the fastest, most accurate, and safest lineworker team, with Florida utilities receiving multiple team and individual awards.”

More than eighty lineworkers joined together at the Capitol Courtyard in Tallahassee for the recognition from the floor of the House of Representatives.  Among them were Lynwood Tanner, Service Supervisor, Brady Foran, Working Foreman, Darryl Grooms, Working Foreman and James Ussery, Lineman from our Northwest Florida Division and Tom Moen, Safety Coordinator, Al Harris, Senior Lineman, Parrish Kildow, Senior Lineman, Clint Brown, Lineman and Justin Beverly, Apprentice from FPU’s Northeast Florida Division.

Linemen, you are our heroes!