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Governor Signs 'Move Over' Law for Utility Workers

April 21, 2016

Governor Nathan Deal marks Lineman Appreciation Month by signing House Bill 767 into law Tuesday. The legislation adds utility vehicles and workers to an existing law which requires drivers to "move over" one lane. (PHOTO: PRNewsFoto/Georgia Power)
Governor Nathan Deal marks Lineman Appreciation Month by signing House Bill 767 into law Tuesday. The legislation adds utility vehicles and workers to an existing law which requires drivers to "move over" one lane. (PHOTO: PRNewsFoto/Georgia Power)

Georgia Power joined dozens of linemen, as well as representatives from the state's electric membership corporations (EMCs), municipal electric providers, and elected officials for a special event at the Georgia Capitol. During the event, attendees marked April as Lineman Appreciation Month in Georgia and recognized the importance of thousands of line workers who work day and night, rain or shine, to keep the lights on.

As a fitting tribute to the line workers in attendance and across the state, Governor Nathan Deal signed House Bill 767 into law Tuesday. The legislation adds utility vehicles and workers to an existing law which requires drivers to "move over" one lane. The law previously applied primarily to stationary law-enforcement vehicles, ambulances, wreckers and garbage trucks. The addition of utility workers to the law will help to ensure safety for linemen who may be working on the roadside at night or following severe weather to repair damaged equipment or restore power for customers. 

"We are honored to unite with Governor Deal and our other utility partners to recognize the work of line crews in communities throughout Georgia," said Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power. "Safety is our top priority in everything we do, and we would like to thank the Governor and the members of the legislature for passing this important legislation that will keep our workers safe in the field."

As a part of the Lineman Appreciation Month celebration, Georgia Power and the state's other electric utilities are inviting all of Georgia to say "thank you" to linemen for their work. Since April 1, hundreds of Georgians have signed the digital "thank you" card at www.ongeorgia.org/lineman and are sharing their stories on social media using #ThankALineman.

Line crews function seamlessly as part of a larger Georgia Power power delivery team, which also includes logistics teams and generation teams at power plants statewide, to keep reliable energy flowing to thousands of homes and businesses.  In addition to serving the company's 2.5 million customers in Georgia, Georgia Power linemen are often called away from their families to help restore power to neighboring states when major storms or disasters occur. Georgia Power linemen can travel thousands of miles each year and can spend weeks in the field helping restore power to customers as far away as New York and Houston.

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