While you’re on the road, their lives are on the line

CEO Karen Moore

Would you drive with your eyes closed?

Of course you wouldn’t; it’s a reckless decision that could end tragically.

However, if you choose to text and drive or, for any reason, stare at your phone instead of the road, you’re essentially doing the same thing.

As we celebrate Lineman Appreciation Day on June 7, I’d like to give you a new way to show your thanks to the lineworkers who make it possible for you to enjoy the comforts of electricity. Drive slowly and carefully and stay alert when you’re passing through roadside work zones.

Day in and day out, Baldwin EMC’s operations crews routinely work with thousands of volts of electricity on a daily basis. One wrong move could put them in contact with enough electricity to stop a heart from beating.

However, that’s a danger our line workers have some control over. With proper training, watchful eyes and the appropriate safety gear, they can do a lot to prevent electrical contact injury.

Distracted, speeding and reckless motorists are a different story. And unfortunately, they’re becoming as much of a hazard to our crews as the high-voltage electricity they work with.

While we can train our crews to constantly observe their surroundings and react appropriately, we can’t control the way motorists behave as they navigate our area’s busy roads and highways. This is where your good choices can make a difference. By looking at the road, slowing down and paying attention to all signs and flaggers, you can help ensure that our line workers make it home safely.

I know some habits are hard to break, especially habits as mindless as picking up your phone to check emails, texts or social media. But the next time you find yourself reaching for your device while you’re behind the wheel, let this question come to mind: Would you rather save a life, or take one?

When you come across one of Baldwin EMC’s roadside work zones, the hard hats and vests you see aren’t just nameless workers. They’re husbands, fathers and grandfathers. They’re community volunteers, youth sports coaches, city council members and church leaders. Their lives have value to their families, their coworkers and their communities. And their lives are much more important than a phone call or text message.

So please consider this my personal appeal. On behalf of all of the lineworkers who make the comforts we enjoy possible, please slow down and stay alert. Their lives are on the line.

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