High voltage class preaches importance of safety

Dave McGoogan, part-time YJATC instructor, shows journeyman Jared Remias some tools of the trade during a recent high voltage class.

Working safely and identifying hazards are top priorities when our member contractors set foot on the jobsite.

Recently, the Youngstown Area Electrical JATC held a high voltage class in an effort to educate journeymen electricians on how to safely work with transformer connections options.

“The class is an effort to get journeymen electricians a little more familiar with working around high voltage,” said Dave McGoogan, journeyman electrician, “Joe” Dickey Electric.

McGoogan pointed out how some customers, such as St. Elizabeth’s Hospital and Youngstown State University, have their own electrical substations that many member contractors have serviced over the years.

“A lot of us learned from the old timers,” he said. “We felt this class would help prepare our younger journeymen.”

During the class, those in attendance learned about things such as splicing and high voltage connections.

“Some of the skill sets we want to teach these guys is if they go out to a job where the customer has lost power or there’s a blown cutout, they’ll be able to safely diagnose the problem and correct it.”

Additionally, McGoogan went hands on with a group of younger journeymen teaching them how to safely change and reload cutouts, while also showing them lightning arresters and other different tools of the trade.

“This is definitely going to help our workforce,” McGoogan said. “A lot of what we do has to do with high voltage. I think this is going to help our industry, and help our people service the customers better.”

These practices will also soon be implemented into apprentice training.

“As time goes on, we want to make this a part of the apprenticeship curriculum so everyone will know and understand it.”