MARSHALL, TX (KLTV) - They are needed most during power outages, after storms. Being a lineman is a dangerous job, that usually has to be done in the most extreme elements.
That's why an East Texas college is preparing students ahead of severe weather.
An emergency simulation is taking place Thursday at Texas State Technical College in Marshall which is helping electrical line worker technology students practice their craft.
Of course, linemen often face grueling conditions on the job, working around high voltages at all times of the day or night, during ice storms, or floods.
Jacob McCombs is a student in the program. He says safety training and precautions are a must when conditions are difficult. The set up can be time consuming in and of itself. He says their goal is to restore power as quickly as they can.
Students say this emergency simulation will provide them with hands on training to prepare for things like maintenance and repairs to electrical lines in the dark.
"It’s invaluable. I can learn a little bit in a book, but I don’t actually understand it until I put my hands on it. But being in the dark is one of those things, do you really want to do this? Cause these are normal working hours once you get started,” explains McCombs.
Riley Hodges, Lead Instructor, Texas State Technical College in Marshall, tells KLTV, “When it’s the coldest, ice storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, everybody goes and seek shelter, that’s when linemen are being called to work so this is just one example.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics overall employment of line repairers is projected to be 8 percent from 2016 to 2026.