Linemen Prepare For Hurricane Season

You can't be scared of heights to do what a lineman does -- install and maintain power lines and utility poles.

To become one, you have to start by learning how to climb one.

"When an apprentice signs on that's one of the first classes they have to go through," said safety coordinator for Magic Valley Electric Cooperative, Vince Macia.

A real lineman climbs a utility pole with at least 25 pounds of gear.

Action 4's Nadia Galindo suited up with just the basics to see how hard it really is and only got a foot and a half off the ground before getting tired, but a real lineman would have another 33 and a half feet to go.

"To be a lineman you have to be in shape, exercise, eat well, stay hydrated and focused," said lead lineman, Buddy Salazar.

Now that the Rio Grande Valley is in hurricane season, the Magic Valley training ground has become a place where linemen prepare for the worst.

When Hurricane Dolly hit, Magic Valley lineman were deployed to restore power.

"Magic valley was able to restore the lines in a timely manner without getting anybody hurt. It was a very good experience for us. We learned a lot, so we are prepared," said Macia.

And although it can take 30 minutes to an hour for a lineman to restore power during an outage, rain or shine, a lineman will get the job done.