Line Work Careers
You might enjoy a career in line work if you:
- Enjoy working outdoors and like physical work.
- Have superior mechanical skills.
- Have stamina, coordination, and are unafraid of heights.
- Have good interpersonal skills for working with customers.
- Like to travel and work in different locations.
- Are willing to work extra hours in emergency situations.
- Have a good driving record.
At many large electrical utilities lineworkers must specialize in one of these areas:
- Constructing transmission and distribution structures and lines.
- Maintaining overhead and underground electrical lines.
- Repairing storm-damaged lines and restoring service.
At Otter Tail Power Company, however, lineworkers have the opportunity to perform all of these key skills. Specific responsibilities include:
- Installing and framing poles.
- Stringing cable.
- Operating heavy equipment.
- Managing vegetation.
- Replacing fixtures and repairing equipment.
- A diploma or certificate from an accredited lineworker program
- Working knowledge of electricity
- Must obtain a commercial driver’s license
- Once hired must complete an apprenticeship program to become a journeyman lineman
Here are some of the schools in this area that offer lineworker programs:
Bismarck State College
(electric power technology - line construction)
Dakota County Technical College
Minnesota State Community and Technical College
Minnesota West Community and Technical College
Mitchell Technical Institute
(power line construction and maintenance)
To prepare for a career as an electrical lineman, consider taking the following high school classes:
- Auto mechanics
- Algebra and geometry
- General business operations
- Interpersonal communications
- Paid vacation
- Health insurance
- Life insurance
- Annual clothing allowance
- Educational reimbursement
- Retirement benefits
- Opportunities to earn overtime pay
According to national labor statistics, annual salaries for lineworkers are above average compared with jobs requiring similar education and skills.
|Job level||Experience||Annual salary*|
|Entry-level Apprentice lineworker||0 - 4 years||$63,000 - $81,000|
|Journeyman lineworker||4+ years||$90,000 - $91,500|
|Lead lineworker||4+ years||Approximately $97,000|
*Does not include overtime pay earned.