Everyone was hot and cranky
A day in the life of a Troubleman
PG&E Troubleman Dan Mayo, a member of the Local 1245 Advisory Council, offers an account of how heat can change a job.
At work, the heat adds hours to jobs that would not normally take as long.
Yesterday (August 11) we had to patrol a long fused tap line across country, some of it on foot, before replacing a blown primary fuse. On Cooperstown Road not far from Lake Don Pedro, the grass was knee-high and super dry, on the hottest day of the year, with a hot breeze blowing. Normally we would have “closed the fuse for a test” within minutes of finding it blown.
But … in this case, on this day, we couldn’t chance a fire.
This patrol added about 8 hours to the outage, with 4 guys working on it. Occasionally I took a break and got a drink of warm water while resting in the shade of a barbed wire fence. With heaven like this, who needs hell?
Nothing abnormal was found on the patrol, and the replacement fuse closed for a test ok. The distribution operator was stressed and cranky. Our customers were hot and cranky. Their dogs were cranky. We were hot, tired and cranky. Our boss sitting in the office was relatively cool but still cranky, and frankly I preferred talking to the dogs.
On the way back home, I stopped in Snelling and got a medium cone at the little drive-in … it was hotter than blazes in there because their fan or swamp cooler was no match for the stove-top. I tipped a dollar and got a smile and a “thank-you-honey” from the now-not-so-cranky waitress. A dollar well-spent. It was a race to keep the ice cream licked ahead of the drips, but I won.
Life is good.