An electric lineman's primary responsibilities revolve around working with electrical systems troubleshooting, constructing and repairing them; the job includes maintaining electrical distribution systems, removing and replacing damaged cables and knowing the proper procedures for grounding wires, using phasing sticks and performing complicated tasks above and below the ground. Requirements sometimes dictate that an internship is undertaken before becoming certified.
Electric lineman also need to have relevant expertise working with transformers, circuits and fuses and live systems. Knowledge of safety procedures and protocols play an important role in the job.
In addition to completing an apprenticeship, educational and physical conditions must be met to perform the job effectively.
A high school degree is normally acceptable but formal training is typically needed; knowledge of the nuances of a specific electrical field and common practices and concepts related to working with power systems is crucial to accomplishing the many tasks asked of a electric lineman.
The work is physically demanding and often done with a team; a strong work ethic, a willingness to work with others and an aptitude for communicating in high tension situations are some of the basic skills needed to accomplish the job in addition to the technical expertise involved with an electrical lineman's duties.