Live - line working: a silent "fight"

Absolutely not working in the rain; not working at night; each worker must not work continuously for more than an hour on the grid, etc. These are some of strict and obligatory rules when workers perform maintenance and repair works on energized grids (live – line working). The job sounds nothing special, but...

Exposed to danger

Following the live - line team of Ho Chi Minh City Power Service Company (under Ho Chi Minh City Power Corporation) on a day early August 2018, I really apprehended the "heat" of this job. It is not only the work intensity but also the psychological pressure in face of risks, dangers, and accidents.

Watching the team members cleaning every tools and devices before working on the grid, Mr. Nguyen Van Luong - head of the live - line team, Ho Chi Minh City Power Service Company shared: If making any mistakes, the price we have to pay will be too high - the lives of ourselves and our colleagues. The only one way to work on a live and energized 22kV grid is that you have to ensure the working accuracy of 100%. Live - line workers do not have chances to learn from experiences.

The EVNHCMC’s live - line team is cleaning tools before working on the grid

Not only working at height, surrounded by energized power lines, to ensure safety, during the entire work process, the live – line worker must be equipped with very heavy and cumbersome protective clothing. Therefore, each live - line worker is not allowed to continuously work on an insulated bucket truck for more than one hour. The team members have to take turns working in order to secure both health conditions and consciousness while working.

Currently, although EVNHCMC has 10 live - line teams, to meet the work demands of 16 subsidiaries is really a big challenge. Because according to regulations, to ensure safety, live - line working will not be performed at night or in the rain. Therefore, when the weather is favorable, live - line teams always have to work at full capacity, meeting very heavy workloads to diminish power interruption durations for customers across the City.

EVNHCMC is the pioneer in EVN deploying live - line working from 1997, therefore the Corporation encountered many difficulties in the beginning. Absorbing technology from abroad, but the grid structure in Vietnam had its own characteristics, so live – line men had to learn and study by themselves, do piloting to accommodate the technology to the existing power grid.  For example, testing of tools and vehicles; choosing type of vehicles suitable to working conditions; or the most economical tool and vehicle to adapt to the grid structure and terrain conditions, etc. These difficulties have been gradually overcome. At present EVNHCMC possesses a team of skilled workers and experts capable of training new workforces.

It can be said that each time working on the energized grid is a "silent fight" of live - line workers. They have conquered every barrier, made great efforts every day, gradually got used to and mastered the job. After more than 20 years, EVNHCMC's live - line workers have not only contributed to keeping the lights on uninterruptedly in the city of Uncle Ho Chi Minh’s name, but also brought the technology to all other power utilities all over the country.

Live - line team of EVNHCMC:

- Established in 1997, with 12 members. Now there are nearly 60 members.

- Each working team is composed of at least 6 members, working in turns (2 persons working, 2 supervising, 2 supporting).

- Main jobs: Grid fault troubleshooting; cleaning, periodic maintenance; doing connection for new substations; repairing and installing new equipment, etc. contributing to reducing the number and duration of power outages.

  • 03/09/2018 10:11