Working a wind farm

This is a guest post from Peter Lukens, Chair of the AWEA Environmental, Health, and Safety O&M Working Group. The working group develops operating guidelines, training modules, and support materials for the safe and healthful operations and maintenance of the wind industry. Peter is the Project Manager, Training, for Siemens Gamesa and has worked in wind for 11 years, holding various roles in manufacturing, quality, operations & maintenance, training, and environmental, health, and safety.

We all know that communication is essential to a strong relationship. This is certainly true when working on a wind farm. Down-tower to up-tower, up-tower to down-tower, back to the shop, and especially in an emergency, knowing the proper way to communicate via radio will ensure a smooth and clear operations.

Over, stand-by, copy, go ahead…these are just a few of the phrases you’ll need to know when communicating via radio. When communicating via two-way radio, it helps when everyone understands and uses similar language and etiquette, especially when there are more than two people using the channel.

When communicating via radio:

  • Identify the recipient of the message and yourself.
  • Be sure to identify your location at the start of the transmission.
  • Use short, clear, and concise messages.
  • Pause before speaking.
  • Release the push to talk button so you don’t block communications.

The EHS O&M Working Group created three PowerPoint training modules that address communication systems and equipment, proper radio discipline and etiquette, and emergency radio communications. These modules provide best practices that you can incorporate into your daily activities, training courses, and emergency response procedures.  Our hope is that it will help ensure you and your team are on the same page when communicating. Make sure to check out the training modules here.