Officials testify in support of utility worker safety resolution

       Officials testify in support of utility worker safety resolution

PR Newswire

LANSING, Mich., Dec. 4, 2012

LANSING, Mich., Dec. 4,2012 /PRNewswire/ --Utility workers deserve the same
protection and respect from drivers that police, firefighters and construction
workers receive. That was the message delivered today to the Michigan House
Energy and Technology Committee by Vince Dow, DTE Energy vice president and
chief engineer of distribution operations, and Dean Bradley, business manager,
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 17.

Committee Chairman Ken Horn, R-Frankenmuth, invited the officials to testify
in support of House Resolution 330, which would establish Dec. 6 as "Utility
Worker Safety Awareness Day." The resolution urges drivers to "slow down and
go around" utility workers, just as they do for police, fire trucks and

Dow told the committee that safety is the highest priority at DTE Energy, and
while the company and employees work hard to minimize risks, utility workers
face inherent dangers on the job. "I have been in this industry for over 30
years," he said. "Sadly, I have lost coworkers in their efforts to provide
energy to the public we serve. I have been with families that have lost sons
and loved ones dedicated to providing our service to the residents of this
great state. I have also been threatened by passing vehicles and dangerous
situations and I can tell you that the memory of these things stays with me."

Dow thanked the committee for brining attention to this issue. "We are proud
that you are considering honoring the men and women who deliver these
essential services to the communities we serve. We have long believed that
protecting the public even in those dangerous situations is an obligation and
privilege that we embrace. Working on a road side with cars whipping by as
you are trying to repair or install energy service can be treacherous."

Bradley also praised the committee for raising awareness about the danger that
vehicles can pose to the linemen and other workers represented by the IBEW.
"The men and women of IBEW put themselves in danger every day in order to
ensure the reliability and safety of the electrical system," he said. "It's
critical that drivers proceed with caution when they approach a utility crew
working in or near a roadway. Our members work hard to eliminate hazards on
the job, for their safety and the public's safety. Drivers need to do their
part to make sure everyone goes home safely and healthy at the end of the

DTE Energy (NYSE:DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved
in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services
nationwide. Its operating units include Detroit Edison, an electric utility
serving 2.1 million customers in Southeastern Michigan, MichCon, a natural gas
utility serving 1.2 million customers in Michigan and other non-utility,
energy businesses focused on gas storage and pipelines, unconventional gas
production, power and industrial projects, and energy trading. Information
about DTE Energy is available at, and


Contact: John Austerberry, +1-313-235-8859,, or Len
Singer, +1-313-235-8809,
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