Meet Your EQUS Team: Vegetation Management
Pictured: Onoway Vegetation Team members Jason Broadbent, Russell St.Germaine, and Andy Westlin (in the bucket).
We're introducing some of the friendly faces that are powering the future of EQUS. Our team members bring their skills, knowledge, expertise, and values to their work every day. Their dedication and hard work are what keeps the lights on for EQUS members, which is why we're celebrating our co-operative's greatest asset: our EQUS team.
EQUS' Vegetation Management team consists of approximately 12 employees based in our Innisfail and Onoway offices. The team includes Vegetation Team Leaders, Utility Tree Trimmers, Utility Tree Workers, and Groundspersons.
Working together, the Vegetation Management Team supports the safety and reliability of our distribution system by maintaining safe clearance and right-of-way access for our power lines. Sustainable vegetation management includes trimming back or removing trees and shrubs that are too close to power lines to minimize risk of line contact and wildfires and ensure EQUS members, the public, and our staff are safe.
Over the past five years, EQUS has reduced overall vegetation costs by nearly a million dollars a year thanks to our team's ongoing efforts to achieve cost-efficiencies by sharing resources between our Service Areas, effectively reducing the need to utilize contracted labour and equipment. In 2022, EQUS invested $884,420 into the Vegetation Management Program, which was a 13 percent decrease from 2021.
Pictured: Innisfail Vegetation Team members Joe Fetchko, Alf Montgomery, and Alain Saindon.