Cooperative Review

Member newsletter for Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative

Lineworkers power our community

Lineworkers are ranked as one of the 10 most dangerous jobs in the country. SMECO’s linemen work near high-voltage electricity rain or shine—in often challenging conditions—to ensure our members have reliable electricity. Move just the wrong way or lose focus for a split second, and it could be deadly.

SMECO and its employees are members of this community and live in the same neighborhoods. If your lights are off, it’s likely that theirs are off too. You can trust that your lineworkers are doing their best to get the lights back on as quickly and safely as possible—so you can get back to normal life.

In honor of your cooperative lineworkers, please join us in celebrating their dedication to keeping the lights on in Southern Maryland this April.

April 8: Lineworker Appreciation Day April 18: National Lineman Appreciation Day

Training Stages for Electric Lineworkers

Known for their strength and agility, lineworkers are dedicated to ensuring our communities have reliable power. Safety is always top priority on the job, which is why lineworkers spend thousands of hours training as they advance their skills.

LineworkersHere’s a look at the career progression of a lineworker.


Crew Leader

A crew leader is an advanced position that requires supervising lineworkers on job sites, coordinating with contractors and directing daily activities for crews.


Journeyman Lineworker

Post-apprenticeship and with roughly 8,000+ hours of training under the belt, journeyman lineworkers are fully trained in their field. They repair, update, and install overhead and underground power lines, as well as other electrical equipment.

2Apprentice Lineworker

Before reaching lineworker status, they are required to work as an apprentice. Apprentice lineworkers earn competitive wages while receiving hands-on training and experience in the field. They typically spend four years in their apprenticeship.


Many lineworkers begin their career as a groundperson, or linehelper. They assist line crews with tools, keeping job sites safe and operating smaller equipment.

Regardless of stage, all lineworkers continue education and training throughout their career. Training and testing requirements vary from utility to utility.