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Berlin Electric Utility honored with safety commendation

Berlin Electric Utility Director Tim Lawrence

By Rachel Ravina, Staff Writer

(Oct. 10, 2019) The Berlin Electric Utility received a safety commendation from the American Municipal Power Association at its annual conference last month in Columbus, Ohio.

“When we deal with high voltage electricity, we have a lot of safety regulations that we have to follow to make sure that nobody is injured,”Utility Director Tim Lawrence said.

Roughly 375 municipal officials and industry representatives attended the annual AMP/OMEA Conference that took place from Sept. 23 to Sept. 25, according to the American Municipal Power Association. The award recognized the Berlin Electric Utility for having less than one percent time loss due to reportable accidents or injuries.

“We have to follow all our safety regulations, and they’re there for a reason,” Lawrence said.

Among the figures on which the aware is based are recordable injuries, illness or lost hours.

Berlin Managing Director Jeff Fleetwood said no lost time was reported for the 2018 calendar year. Fleetwood also said no time had been lost so far in 2019.

Lawrence said utility workers participate in monthly safety meetings. He added that a “tailgate discussion” takes place “with all the employees involved, so they’re all on the same page” before any job starts.

Lawrence also said the utility observes federal guidelines, as well as the 16th edition of the American Public Power Safety Manual.