Mon Power (First Energy)
Fairmont, West Virginia, U.S.
LinemanDaily: Let’s just get right into it… Where do you work? How long have you been in the line trade and how old are you?
Jess Twyman: I work for Mon Power (a FirstEnergy subsidiary). I have worked there for about 6 months but in the line trade for 2 years. I’m 21 years old.
Jess Twyman: Yes that is correct.
LinemanDaily: And how are you enjoying the trade so far?
Jess Twyman: I’m loving it. It’s very enjoyable and fulfilling work.
LinemanDaily: What do you like the most about the trade?
Jess Twyman: Probably the fact that everyday is something different. You’re never doing the exact same thing in the exact same situation. It’s always different and throws new challenges at you.
Jess Twyman: Never really had an aspirations of being a lineman. I tried the college thing right out of high school and hated it. So I was trying to figure out wanted to do with my life. I heard from my father, who also works for First Energy, that they were having open tryouts for a line school ran by First Energy and the local community college. So I went to the tryouts. The first time I strapped my hooks on and stepped onto the pole I fell in love and the rest is history!
LinemanDaily: It was meant to be! That’s one of the coolest stories I’ve heard of someone finding the trade! What is your crew working on right now?
Jess Twyman: Meant to be for sure! No real big jobs going on right now. We are the local power company, like the actually supplier of electricity, so we just have regular new business and maintenance.
Jess Twyman: It means everything to me. My goal and the company’s goal is for everyone to go home the way they came to work. Being one of the junior guys on the crew sometimes you don’t like to speak up in situations where there is group conversation. But when it comes to safety I will speak up in a moments notice if I see something I think is unsafe.
LinemanDaily: That’s a good way to be, everyone is responsible for safety no matter how long you have been on. You are your brothers keeper! Where do you see yourself in ten years from now?
Jess Twyman: Hopefully still working in the line trade but on our company EHV (transmission) crew.
LinemanDaily: What draws you to the transmission crew?
Jess Twyman: Work schedule (4 10’s), you get to travel more, and for some reason it’s appealing to me. I guess since it’s all bigger and better. The higher up I am the better for me!
LinemanDaily: I’ve always wanted to do the same thing! The helicopter work has always appealed to me! What do you do in your spare time?
Jess Twyman: I ride my Harley, lift weights, shoot guns… the normal stuff!
LinemanDaily: Atta boy, typically lineman stuff! Any words of wisdom for new guys coming into the trade?
Jess Twyman: Find an older guy that everyone respects and who knows his stuff and attach yourself to him. Pay attention and learn all you can!
LinemanDaily: Couldn’t agree more Jess! Thanks a lot for doing this interview! I really appreciate it!
Jess Twyman: No problem! I appreciate the opportunity!
RnR Powerline Construction
B Lineman (2 Yrs Exp.)
Sayre, Oklahoma, U.S.
LinemanDaily: Could you tell us a little bit about yourself Brett?
Brett Cox: I’m 21 years old. I have roughly 2 years total experience. And I work for RnR Powerline Construction in Sayre, Oklahoma.
LinemanDaily: Are you an apprentice with RnR?
Brett Cox: I’m a B lineman. It’s a small time contract company. They don’t offer apprenticeships or journeyman positions.
LinemanDaily: Are you enjoying line work so far?
Brett Cox: I love line work. If they didn’t pay me I’d be doing it for free!
LinemanDaily: I couldn’t I agree more I feel the same way! What is your favourite part of being a lineman?
Brett Cox: There’s a lot of favorites. The schedule compared to the oilfield is amazing. And I just love that there really isn’t a whole lot of people that really notice miles and miles of powerlines. They don’t know what all goes into this industry. It’s just a lot of personal pride going into in my work.
LinemanDaily: That’s a good trait to have! I believe it’s so important to care about your work! How did you become involved with line work?
Brett Cox: During high school I worked on hunting leases for a guy that owned a line company.
LinemanDaily: Where do you see yourself ten years from now in this profession?
Brett Cox: In ten years I see myself above foreman. Getting on with a Co-Op or something. Running service calls.
LinemanDaily: That’s a great thing to strive for! What does safety mean to you and how do you implement that at work?
Brett Cox: Safety means staying alive. And I never go up without proper PPE. And always holding the entire crew accountable for their safety equipment and procedures as well.
LinemanDaily: That’s the way to do it, if everyone pulls their weight than things seem to go smoother. What is your crew working on right now?
Brett Cox: We’re working on a 205 pole changeout currently. Poles that failed testing.
LinemanDaily: It says something about the National Guard on your profile, can you tell us more about that?
Brett Cox: I’ve been in the Oklahoma national guard for two years. I’m an infantryman. Weekend warrior. I joined to pay for college then didn’t go.
LinemanDaily: That’s impressive, I’m assuming that you are still involved with the Guard?
Brett Cox: Yes, until 2019. One weekend a month.
LinemanDaily: Thanks a lot for doing this Brett! Stay safe and keep in touch!
Brett Cox: Thank you!