Line Constructor at Con Edison of New York
New York City, NY
$100,000 - $120,000
As a line constructor, I am responsible for constructing, rebuilding, and repairing overhead electrical power transmission in New York City. There are two types of line constructors: underground, where you dig holes and run wires underground, and overhead, where you maintain electrical power lines above ground. I am an overhead line constructor. Most people who are line constructors either become a Crew Chief (Line Supervisor) or a Troubleshooter (an individual who solves issues that may arise). I have chosen to become a Troubleshooter. In fact, I am in the process of taking the necessary assessments and classes to do so.
I graduated high school and wasn't sure what I wanted to do. I learned that I had a knack for cooking, so I initially wanted to become a chef. I went to college and soon learned that academics weren't for me. I decided to join the workforce. I applied for a position at Con Ed and was offered a position. The application process for my position at Con Edison was pretty extensive. First, I submitted a resume and then, I took an exam. (The exam assesses your basic skills: reading comprehension, basic math, etc.) After I passed the exam, Con Edison sent me an application. Next, I was interviewed and given a job offer, I attended orientation and physical training session. Lastly, I took classes to prepare me for a position. I took CPR classes, bucket rescue classes, and asbestos classes. Some of these classes I take each year. Right now, I am in training to become a troubleshooter. Troubleshooter training usually takes 6 months. I have to learn about meters and how to them.
I meet with my supervisor to get an assignment. We assess the job, devising the best way to tackle the assignment. The assignment can range from fixing a pole, elongating a pole, setting a pole, or digging a hole for the pole. There are several steps involved in my job. If I am creating a new pole, I first dig a hole. Then, I install the pole. Next, I attach the transformer to the pole. The transformer's job is to transform the voltage power in a way that it can be used inside of a house. Lastly, I connect the wires from the pole to the home, so that electricity will be available in the home. I am also the first responder to a hit pole. For instance, when there is bad weather and a pole is hit, I am one of the first people to arrive at the scene and fix the pole.
I work 12-hour shifts. I may work from 6am until 6pm. If there is an emergency and I need to work overtime, then my hours will be even longer than that. Also, this is a very dangerous job. If you do not follow protocol, you can die or become seriously injured.
It is marketable. I can go anywhere with my skill set and get a job. There is a shortage of line constructors, so I can always land a job anywhere in the world, including Africa.
Most companies require an application before you are invited for an interview. Con Edison is different. Candidates have to pass an assessment before completing an application.
It is very casual. I have to wear casual clothes that will enable me to move freely while climbing up poles.
Becoming a line constructor is an excellent choice and career path. I would advise you to learn as much as you can about the trade.
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