A Day in the life of a Jointer at UK Power Networks
I joined UK Power Networks when I was 20, following in the footsteps of my Dad and Grandad. I really do enjoy my job, no two days are the same.
I live in Essex and come in by van, picking up my Jointer’s Mate, Josh, on the way. We like to arrive early at our office just off the Edgware Road. Today we went to fix an electricity cable fault just off the Brompton Road, a couple of miles away. We knew it wouldn’t be a simple task because our electricity cable runs right underneath the steps up to a parade of shops.
Doing our best
It was a routine job, not an emergency, so a lot of planning was done beforehand. Local residents and shopkeepers were notified that we were coming and that their power would be off for most of the day – though we always do our best to get things fixed sooner than that, if we can.
Our team that carries out our excavation and reinstatement works, had already been to the site with their digger and removed the pavement so we could get straight to the cable; they had also cordoned off the area.
Once I received the paperwork telling us what we needed to do, I jumped in the van with Josh, who’s been working with me for the last year. We’re a great team and always have a good laugh. It’s really important to get on well because we work closely together and have to trust each other.
Sometimes we have to work with live electricity cables, so we always put safety first and are really careful in everything we do.
We’re trained to use a lot of different detection equipment so we can find out where the underground cable is and where the fault lies. One of Josh’s jobs is to strip the protective layers from the cable so that I can make the repair then join up the cable, hence the name Jointer. Then the cable has to be resealed, and the hole filled and made safe.
Here whatever the weather
Whatever the weather, we’re out there finding and fixing faults and getting the power back on. It’s a job that suits me because I like being outdoors. I feel a real sense of achievement when we’ve done a good job and customers come up to us in the street and say ‘thank you’.
Of course, it’s not always like that. Customers can get frustrated when their electricity goes off, electricity is something that we all take for granted and I understand how they feel. Mostly though, our customers just want to be kept informed. A big part of the job is making sure we communicate well, both on site and by our website, phone and text message. I let people know how we’re getting on, if they come up and ask.
When we knock off for the evening and a new crew take over, I’m always pleased that we’ve done a good day’s work. I head back home and look forward to riding my motorbike or getting my fishing rods out and having a relaxing weekend.
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