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PG&E Team Wins Championship Honors In 2014 International Lineman's Rodeo

10/21/2014

Prestigious international competition tests safety and technical skills among more than 200 elite teams from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom

GRASS VALLEY, Calif., Oct. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- In an elite competition that tests safety training and technical skills, the team of Anthony Albright, Adam Beene and J.P. Richard —electric linemen who serve the Grass Valley area—took home three first place world championship awards after competing against more than 200 lineman teams from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom at the 31st Annual International Lineman's Rodeo, in Bonner Springs, Kansas. The team was one of several representing Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and the International Brotherhood of Electric Workers (IBEW) Local 1245 that were honored in the competition.

"PG&E line workers dedicate themselves every day to providing our customers—their family, friends and neighbors in the communities where they live and work—with service that is safe and reliable," said PG&E President Chris Johns. "We are proud of their daily commitment to our customers and to see them get the recognition they so richly deserve."

The PG&E team began the evening with a first place win in the "Mystery Event"—an exercise designed to simulate the unforeseen elements that lineman often confront as they perform their critical jobs. They also took home first place for all Investor-Owned Utilities competing at the rodeo, and they capped off the evening with the biggest honor of all: best overall performance in the journeymen linemen category. In addition, the linemen took second place in an event to see how quickly and safely they could climb a utility pole.

"This is a victory that all of our customers can be proud of, and proves how hard our linemen work every day to put safety first," said Geisha Williams, executive vice president of Electric Operations at PG&E. "I'm so unbelievably proud of this team and all of our linemen who are willing to do incredibly difficult work to provide safe and reliable energy to 15 million Californians."

The 2014 International Lineman's Rodeo is the most prestigious international competition to test lineman teams on their safety skills and technical training in an array of contests. These contests include a simulation that tests their ability to safely rescue an injured colleague, and their ability to safely and rapidly climb to the top of a utility pole, as well as several "Mystery Events" that test critical skills related to their jobs. Linemen undergo years of extensive safety and technical training to become qualified to perform these critical jobs. PG&E linemen perform their work in a wide variety of challenging conditions, such as rain storms, intense heat, blizzards and even wildfires.

The wins are even more impressive because the PG&E/Local IBEW 1245 teams wore their company-issued fall restraining safety equipment—gear that can slow competitors down—even though wearing the equipment was not required by official rodeo competition rules.

"Speed is a critical component of the competition, but safety always comes first," said J.P. Richard. "We are committed to performing our jobs as safely as possible, and we felt it was important to demonstrate the fall restraining safety equipment to showcase how we perform our work safely every day."

"Linemen don't do anything small—it's go big or go home," said Adam Beene, a third-generation lineman (his dad and grandfather also served as linemen at PG&E), who is entering into his 14th year with the company. "There's a lot of pride that goes into our trade. I know my dad and granddad would be so proud!" 

The PG&E team of Anthony Albright, Adam Beene and J.P. Richard has more than 38 years of combined service to PG&E's customers. This was the third time for Beene and Albright at the International Lineman's Rodeo, and the second time for Richard. At the awards ceremony, PG&E's teams from Bakersfield and Grass Valley also took third and second place overall in the senior division, which recognizes linemen who are 45 or older. In addition, Mike Moreno, a PG&E apprentice lineman from Fresno, won second place in an event simulating the process of safely rescuing an injured colleague and third place in a CPR test.

"The IBEW Local 1245 is proud of all of our members who competed in the International Rodeo," said Tom Dalzell, business manager for IBEW Local 1245. "These linemen truly represent the best of our craft and show just how proud we are of our trade."

PG&E's teams competed in a rigorous intra-company competition against linemen from throughout Northern and Central California to determine which linemen would win the honor of representing PG&E and IBEW Local 1245 at the International Rodeo. Teams from Bakersfield, Fresno and Madera, as well as apprentice linemen from Livermore, Hayward, Fresno and San Francisco, won the right to compete in the International Lineman's Rodeo.

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com/ and http://www.pge.com/about/newsroom/.

Anthony Albright, Adam Beene, JR Richard took home 1st place in the Journeyman division at the 2014 Lineman's Rodeo.

 

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20141020/153199

Video - http://origin-qps.onstreammedia.com/origin/multivu_archive/PRNA/ENR/FX-SF42627-20141020-1.mp4

 

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/pge-team-wins-championship-honors-in-2014-international-linemans-rodeo-849417762.html

SOURCE Pacific Gas and Electric Company

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