@east_coast_lineman, please share your story with us. Why/how did you get into linework?
From a career fireman to the life of a lineman and more so known as the “East Coast Lineman”, I have been blessed to be where I am today. I have enjoyed my life as a lineman more so than anything I’ve ever done professionally. Once you enter that “MAD” and you get into your groove working around all those high voltage lines, it is forever in your blood. You cannot get away from it, its an addiction and a very rewarding career. Though I have left the line, and hung up my hooks to become a Construction Project Manager today, I still have the cravings to be inches away from those lines and watch projects come together through the work of my crew and myself.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been all blue skies and roses since beginning my career. I have been through a lot of obstacles from foremen that secretly had grudges against me to guys that would run behind my back and try to sabotage my name and my integrity. I allowed those people to be the fuel to my fire. Looking back on those days, it makes me laugh knowing where I am today and seeing those same people at the same level they were when I was around them. Needless to say, don’t allow someone else’s actions and misery discourage you from being the best. Be humble, be quiet, work hard and surround yourself with guys that have the same drive as you!
Please tell us about East Coast Lineman.
As everyone knows, I am The East Coast Lineman and known for my skits on social media. What started out as a small page for my crew and anyone on the East Coast that was involved in line work grew into what it is today. Though many people look at me as this famous person, I am no different than anyone. I put my pants on just like anyone else, one leg at a time. I’m always willing to help the next man. I don’t know it all nor do I claim to but I’m always here to help if I can.
I am currently a Construction Project Manager for a consulting firm that oversees utility companies. I moved into this position in August of this year. I worked my way up from a groundman in overhead distribution on up to my current position as a Construction Project Manager. Though I miss the guys I worked with and working the line, it is truly a blessing to be where I am today. I enjoy seeing new faces in this line of work and watching them prosper, its truly the most rewarding career I’ve ever had.
What do you feel are the biggest barriers today to linemen, in the industry or generally?
Support. I say this because of the things I’ve personally been through and the things I see constantly happening to guys within the industry. From the trash talking behind your back to submitting paperwork to have you terminated, there is very little support when it really comes down to it. The brotherhood is very tight but there are snakes in every profession. Choose your “brothers” wisely. When something happens, you will see who your brothers are. When times get rough, you will see who your brothers are. I’m not saying turn a blind eye to things that are wrong, but I am saying there are guys that want nothing more than to see you fail. Sad part is, they call themselves “brothers” Leave your personal feelings at home, watch out for your brothers, support each other and make sure everyone goes home safe.
What is the craziest thing that has ever happened to you on the line?
Craziest thing that has ever happened to me on the line.
A pole, lots of weight, rain, and a trench is how this story came to be……
My crew and I were on a solar farm project framing up new poles, my foreman at the time was running the line truck for the pole I was on. I was securing some metering equipment to the pole as he positioned it in place with the line truck. After it was secured, I unhooked his winch line from the metering equipment, and he began to rotate around to rack the truck up as we were done with it. I finished up what I needed to do on the pole and as I was booming down I looked back at the pole, it was falling and falling fast towards me, before I had time to react it fell on me and my bucket. I’ll never forget the panic and of everyone on my crew when this happened. Thankfully I wasn’t hurt, and my crew was able to use a nearby excavator to get the pole off of me and my bucket. Though it may not sound that bad it could have resulted in an obituary of me rather than this interview.
How do we find you?