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Manager's Report - September 2016

Saying Goodbye to Summer & Learning How to Keep Your Family Safe this Fall

   I hope you and your family had a great summer. Mine was fantastic. My family and I just returned from a vacation to Alaska. What a beautiful part of the world. My entire family took a cruise up the inside passage from Vancouver, Canada, to Seward, AK, and we had a blast. My grandkids told me that it was the best vacation ever, and I have to agree.

Great Job Controlling Peak Demand!

   Thank you for your e orts this summer in conserving usage during the peak hours from 3 to 6 p.m. Our data shows that approximately 25 percent of our members lowered their usage beginning at 3 p.m., which provided a peak savings of almost 5 percent and lowered their power bill. Many of you have installed programmable thermostats that automatically lower your demand during the 3 to 6 p.m. peaking time.
   As I have mentioned before, members are saving more than a million dollars a year by peak conservation! We commend those who have taken advantage of our peak rates and challenge other members to try it. I would love to hear about how you conserved energy. Drop me a note at rdshort@butler.coop and tell me about your success story.

Gary Abel Retires

   All of us at Butler REC would like to congratulate GARY ABEL on his recent retirement, serving Butler REC for 17 years as our Chief Accountant. 
   Abel not only paid great attention to detail, he was always the fi rst to lend a helping hand in our offi ce. His retirement plans include babysitting his new grandson, Ramsey, and finishing his honey-do list. Best wishes to him in retirement!

Power Line Safety

   During a recent Butler REC Safety Meeting, much of the discussion focused on power line safety, which is one of the biggest hazards to farmers, tree stand hunters and large equipment operators. To stay safe, we urge farm operators, hunters and workers to:

  • Use a spotter when operating large machinery near electric lines.
  • Use care when raising augers or the bed of grain trucks around power lines.
  • Keep equipment at least 10 feet from lines— at all times, in all directions.
  • Inspect the height of the equipment to determine clearance.
  • Always remember to lower extensions and truck beds when moving equipment.
  • Never attempt to move a power line out of the way or raise it for clearance.
  • Never attach a tree stand to an electric pole.
  • Never assume a power line is not energized.
  • If a power line is sagging or low, or you have any questions or concerns regarding Butler REC lines, please contact us immediately at 316-321-9600

   If the equipment you are operating does make contact with overhead lines, it is best to stay in the cab and immediately call 911 to warn others to stay away and wait for the utility crew to cut the power before exiting the machinery. If you see an operator’s equipment make contact with a power line, resist the instinct to rush to the aid of that person. Stay back and warn others to stay away.
   The only reason to exit is if the equipment is on fi re. If this is the case, jump o the equipment with your feet together. Avoid touching the ground and vehicle at the same time. Then, still keeping your feet together, “bunny hop” away.

Planting Near Power Lines

   Power line safety is also vulnerable when tree branches interfere with overhead power lines and tree roots infiltrate underground utilities. A tree in the wrong place can become expensive to maintain and even dangerous. When considering placement, select a
planting location that will not interfere with utility lines both in the air and underground. Tall growing trees with a mature height of greater than 40 feet should be planted at least 50 feet away from lines to avoid future interference with power lines that will require pruning. Trees with a mature height of less than 25 feet may be planted closer to power lines. Keep in mind, trees should never be planted directly under power lines, near poles or too close to electrical equipment.
   Trees growing near power lines must be removed or pruned to maintain a safe distance from the wires. If you have trees that are growing into power lines, please contact us. Never try to prune them yourself.
   Before planting trees, always call 811. The 811 “Call Before You Dig” is a free service that locates and marks your public underground utilities. Make sure to call a few work days in advance of any digging project to give ample time for a professional to locate these utilities. Electrical, gas, water, cable and telephone lines can all be found underground.
   Butler REC encourages everyone to learn more about the benefits of tree planting and selecting the perfect tree for the right place in your yard.

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