Our Safety Culture
Safety is our top priority. Join us in recognizing May as National Electrical Safety Month. Photo: FRECC Staff
What do you think of when you hear the word “safety?” It’s a universal word that is mentioned often and sometimes used loosely. From America’s national security to swimming guidelines, school safety to airline regulations. We hear about safety so much, we wonder if we tend to tune it out, especially when we are in a rush or don’t want to be inconvenienced.
Because safety is the number one priority at Farmers RECC, this is not empty talk. Over time, Farmers RECC has created a culture of safety by putting our employees’ safety and that of the community above all else. At its essence, Farmers RECC’s mission is to provide safe, affordable and reliable electricity to our members. At the end of the day, we strive to deliver affordable and reliable electricity to you, but our workers must return home safely to their loved ones. To do this requires ongoing focus, dedication and vigilance.
Working with electricity is an inherently dangerous job, especially for lineworkers. This is why Farmers RECC is proud of our safety record, achieving 250,000 working hours with no lost time accidents, qualifying our cooperative for its sixth Governor’s Safety and Health Award. Supported by training and clear safety standards from Kentucky Electric Cooperatives, Farmers RECC has a safety team whose focus is keeping employees and the community safe around electricity. We established and follow safety protocols based on leading national safety practices for the utility industry. We require our lineworkers to wear specialized equipment when working next to or with power lines. There are specific protocols that our lineworkers follow when dealing with electricity. Our safety team has regular meetings where they discuss upcoming projects from a safety perspective. They monitor and track near-misses of accidents in order to understand them, share “lessons learned” and improve in the future.
We encourage all of our crews to speak up and hold each other accountable for safety. By cultivating a culture of openness and transparency, we promote problem-solving with regard to safety, rather than defaulting to a blame game. We examine the information and data gleaned from near-misses and accident reports to discern patterns and use safety metrics to improve in those areas where we have fallen short. As appropriate, we brief contractors on our safety protocols and set expectations for their engagement.
Because we live and work in this community we serve, we care about our neighbors. Farmers RECC highlights safety reminders regularly in Kentucky Living and conducts electrical safety demonstrations in schools and for community events.
May is National Electrical Safety Month. According to the Electrical Safety Foundation, each year thousands of people in the United States are critically injured or electrocuted as a result of electrical fires, accidents and electrocution in their own homes. Many of these accidents are preventable. There is much you can do to keep yourself and your community safe around electricity.
Don’t attempt electrical DIY projects or overload your outlets. Report downed power lines, unlocked substations or pad mount transformers that look amiss. Contact Farmers RECC for additional electrical safety tips. Be mindful when it comes to electrical safety. Pause and take the extra time to plug into safety.
We hope that when you think of the word, “safety,” you think of Farmers RECC.