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In the years ahead, EWEB will have to make a lot of decisions about where to get the electricity that we deliver to customers.Find Out More
On a chilly November day, third graders from Adams Elementary School in Eugene learned about the lifecycle of native salmon on a field trip to Lake Creek near Triangle Lake. The field trips take place all month as part of a program funded by EWEB grants. EWEB dedicates a portion of customer rates to inspiring kids to explore the wonders of science and learn about watershed health, water quality, and emergency preparedness.Find Out More
For EWEB, preparing for harsh winter storms is a year-round responsibility. While we can’t control the weather, we can make our electric infrastructure more resilient to withstand storms that bring snow, ice and wind to Eugene.Find Out More
At the Nov. 1st board meeting, EWEB Commissioners got an update on the budget and rates for next year and the EWEB quarterly report.Find Out More
There’s no obvious right answer to the question of what to do about the Leaburg dam and canal. EWEB’s Board of Commissioners met this week for a work session with staff about the project.Find Out More
Imagine if heavy snowfall and freezing rain hit Eugene this winter. Imagine damaged trees, road closures and widespread power outages. What would you do?Find Out More
By partnering with ShakeAlert and the Oregon Hazards Lab, EWEB gets an early warning of the effects of earthquakes on hydropower facilities.Find Out More
EWEB held its Poster Contest for 5th grade students in our service territory for Public Power Week, October 2-8, receiving more than 100 entries from classrooms across the area.Find Out More
When access to pad mount transformers, cable, and smart meter chips tightened, EWEB only had one choice – double down on its core values, provide safe and reliable electricity. Below are the stories from EWEB staff about how they have navigated the ups and downs of this new frontier.Find Out More
EWEB's elected Board of Commissioners has voted to authorize General Manager Frank Lawson to pursue and negotiate the sale of the former EWEB headquarters building.Find Out More
EWEB’s Source Water Champions work year-round to protect our drinking water. They take water quality samples throughout the watershed, help our neighbors be better stewards, and coordinate multi-agency teams for restoration work and hazard mitigation.Find Out More
Local middle school students from around the area learned about the entire life cycle of salmon along the McKenzie River at Salmon Watch 2022, which was held at the EWEB spawning channel. The field trip took place during peak salmon spawning season, when fish that are at least two feet long are reaching the end of their journey from the ocean to their natal streams.Find Out More
EWEB is bringing back our annual poster contest for Public Power Week, and needs your help to select our top 5 winners!Find Out More
EWEB’s electric safety trailer is an interactive tool for the public to learn how to react in a potentially dangerous situation.Find Out More
EWEB used the tactic of a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) for the first time to mitigate the risk of wildfires.Find Out More
At this rodeo, power poles take the place of bulls and electric workers stand in for cowboys. During this family-oriented event, electric linemen climbed poles using razor sharp, steel point shoes, called Gaffs (think cowboy spurs) to compete in mock equipment repair events. Just like how rodeos originated from cowboys coming together to practice their skills, this rodeo shines a light on a profession many know little about, but one we all rely on to keep the lights on.
A three-man journeyman crew from EWEB took 15th place at this year’s Pacific Northwest Lineman Rodeo on July 23 at Portland General Electric’s training course in Gresham. It was the first time the rodeo has been held in two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Twenty-one teams from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Arizona, and Utah competed in five events: cutout installation, high line jumper replacement, hurt-man rescue, pole climb and pole transfer.
Events such as high line jumper replacement and cut out installation are tasks linemen perform routinely in the field. Judges scored competitors based on their execution of the task.
In contrast, the pole climb event is rowdy contest in which two linemen race up opposite poles, toss an egg to each other mid-air and then climb down. The fastest team to complete the task without breaking an egg wins. In the hurt-man rescue, a dummy is stationed at the top of a power pole waiting to be rescued. This is a common practice scenario as linemen are required to renew a rescue certification each year.
Proceeds from the event are donated to the Portland Burn Center. Last year, even though the event was cancelled, they raised $50,000 for the burn center from utility donations and sponsorships. EWEB was represented by Philip Henneman, Joe Lay and Evan McGill (pictured), who are 4, 10 and 9 years into their careers, respectively. EWEB also had one apprentice compete, Jeremy Kernutt, and provided one judge for the event, Ryan Oosthof.
Before becoming a journeyman lineman, a person must complete 7,000 hours of apprenticeship. An apprenticeship is a combination of studying practical theory in the classroom and in the field training, including 1,000 hours of working with energized lines.
“There are multiple ways to become a lineman,” said Larry Longworth, EWEB Dispatch Supervisor. “One method is through outside construction which consists of applying through the union hall, interviewing, and being ranked on a list for union contractor call outs. The other method is to be hired by a utility and bidding through a competitive process for an apprenticeship opening.”
In both scenarios candidates can make themselves more competitive by attending one of the linemen schools offered in Oregon, Idaho and California.
The event is a true family affair filled with vendors and activities for kids, including a rock-climbing wall for kiddos to practice their “pole climbing” skills right next to the professionals. EWEB’s local 659 Union was also there raising money for their Brotherhood Fund.
“We’ve raised over $81,000 to help 188 Union families just by selling merch,” said Don McElroy, 659 Union Assistant Business Manager for EWEB. “If there’s anyone out there ready to start their career as a lineman, we’re here to help.”
“Placing 15th is a very respectable finish as the events are highly competitive and this rodeo marks a return in participation by an EWEB team,” said Longworth. “The team represented EWEB well and I’m hoping to see more participation by our folks next year.”
The PNW Lineman Rodeo is a philanthropic opportunity for comradery amongst utilities. It’s also an opportunity for public education. If you want to have some fun and learn about the community who reliably and safely keeps your power on, then plan to attend the Rodeo in 2023. Admission is free, and all proceeds from purchases of food, beverage and merchandise are donated to the burn center.
4200 Roosevelt Blvd.
Eugene, OR 97402
Para asistencia en español llame al 541-685-7000, presione 9
Phone hours: 9 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.