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How Ameren workers stay safe in extreme cold

Published: Jan. 7, 2022 at 3:17 PM CST
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PEORIA (25 News) - The extreme cold has been making headlines across much of the country for a few days now and though they are coming to an end, it is only a matter of time before they will be back once again. Unfortunately, some work in the outdoors needs to be done, regardless of temperature and weather extremes.

The work that Ameren Illinois lineworkers do is one of the jobs that must be done regardless of the weather and the safety of their workers is a top priority.

Craig Gilson, Senior Director of Electric Operations at Ameren Illinois tells us that due to the nature of their work, they have to be out no matter what.

“We have some general guidelines that we follow. If it’s beyond a certain temperature we will minimize the type of work we do will all respond to emergencies.” Said Gilson. He went on to discuss what happens during emergency calls, saying that they will send extra personnel depending on the situation.

There is no set temperature minimum where these protocols will be implemented, however, they look at wind chill and temperature and the general weather conditions, and make a decision from there.

Ameren workers when out in the brutal cold wear all the necessary garments to protect them, the kicker here being they also need their dexterity to be preserved as well, which can be difficult when bundling up. Gilson tells us that they wear face masks that are rated for the cold, and other garments that help them stay warm, safe, and dexterous.

Gilson also tells us that they are sure to pay attention to their fellow co-workers, watch each others’ backs.

“That’s something else that we really stress a lot is be your brother’s keeper. If you see somebody that is overdoing it or appears to be having some challenges to stop the job and make sure we protect our co-workers.” Said Gilson.

The above quote can be used for extreme cold or extremely hot temperatures. He told us that during the summer the priority is making sure everyone stays hydrated.

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