Jessica Hamilton, of Henley Primary School, asks :-
What do you wear when you fix power lines?
Wayne Youngman, the South Island Transmission Line Manager for Transpower NZ Ltd, responded
If working on lines that are not alive, lineman wear normal close fitting warm clothing, with solid boots suitable for climbing. Also because they normally work at height, for long periods, they are subject to colder temperatures than those on the ground. Therefore warm clothing is essential.
If they are working on lines that are alive (Live line work) they wear a conductive suit that is able to conduct electricity. This suit is called a "Faraday Suit". It is made up of conductive overalls with a hood, conductive socks, conductive boots and conductive gloves that are all electrically bonded to each other. The lineman is effectively inside a Faraday cage.
The suits are usually made of a blend of Nomex aramide flame resistant material woven together with microscopic stainless steel fibre. The clothing is bonded to the conductor, placing the lineman within the field of electricity, not as a conductor himself, and allows him to work with his hands on the conductor afterwards without receiving annoying electric shocks.
Because Linemen are working at heights, they must wear line safety belts or similar, to prevent them from falling and injuring themselves, also they must wear hard-hats working both on the ground, and up the tower or pole to reduce injury from falling objects. Wearing synthetic clothing such a polypropylene etc. is discouraged because if a electrical accident was to occur, synthetic clothing burns easily and on melting sticks to the skin making it very difficult to remove.