CEO’s Message: In Safe Hands

September 2023

By Michael S. McWaters, Executive V.P./CEO

Even if we don’t think about it, most of us have our own safety procedures we follow from day to day. We practice safe driving to avoid accidents and higher insurance fees, wash our hands to protect ourselves from disease and take any number of other precautions that we don’t consciously think about.

As an electric cooperative, we can’t afford to slip up. Because many of our employees work with high-voltage electrical equipment on a regular basis, one mistake could lead to serious injury or even death. For many longtime lineworkers, electrical safety can become second nature. But when the stakes are this high, relying on habit isn’t enough.

That’s why it’s important for our employees to remain vigilant and take an active interest in the latest safety equipment and best practices. In fact, that dedication to learning is built right into the fifth cooperative principle — education, training and information.

While safety on the job might be the most important way we put that principle into practice, SVEC also places a high value on the safety of our consumer- members. Today, electricity has become so commonplace in every aspect of our lives that we can forget the risks it poses if we aren’t careful.

So, as a reminder of how important it is to keep electrical safety in mind wherever you are, this month we’re providing some tips on home electrical safety. From avoiding dangerous shocks to preventing electrical fires that could hurt someone or damage your home, you’ll find help you need to stay safe around the house.

We hope these pages can serve as a useful reference any time you have a question about safe electrical practices. If you have other questions or would like to learn more, you can also visit our page Outages & Safety in the main menu at the top of the page. There you can find more general safety information, tips for using a generator safely and guidelines for safe digging.

Many parents also have their kids’ safety in mind this time of year as students return to school. Suwannee Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC) was proud to support local back-to-school efforts that provide much-needed classroom supplies to local students.

For all the amazing technology electric power has brought us, we should never forget the dangers it can pose if not properly respected. I hope all of our consumer members will enjoy a safe and rewarding start to this new academic year. As always, we will continue to provide the safe, reliable and affordable electricity that powers your lives.