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Ep 5 - Line Mechanic

Job description

Constructing and maintaining electrical lines to customer requirements.

Line mechanics work with electrical lines and may do some or all of the following:

  • erect or replace power poles
  • string cables between poles, pylons and buildings
  • join and splice cables
  • test lines and circuits
  • locate and repair faults
  • repair and replace cables
  • carry out emergency repairs on electricity lines
  • install electricity transformers
  • check equipment regularly for safety
  • erect safety barriers around work areas
  • connect equipment to an electric network
  • carry out street light maintenance
  • do administrative and job-planning work

Qualifications required

To become a line mechanic you need to do on-the-job training or an apprenticeship, and work towards the Level 4 qualification: National Certificate in Electricity Supply (Line Mechanic Distribution) 

Training costs

Your training costs will usually be covered by your employer supporting your apprenticeship.

Career path

Chances of getting a job as a line mechanic are good due to a shortage of workers.

Line mechanics can continue to progress their career after being qualified for two years they are able to train to become a Glove and Barrier Line Mechanic (Live Live Mechanic).

There are also opportunities to lead or supervise crews and possible advancement into Project Management type positions.

If you work hard and possess the correct characteristics the opportunities in the Electrical Distribution industry are endless. 

Salary range

According to the Stategic Pay remuneration report a qualified line Mechanic can earn between $23.70 and $27.60 an hour before overtime.  These rates increase if you move to becoming a Glove & Barrier (live line) mechanic. 

Other careers this profession could lead to

Please see career path notes.

How to increase the chances of successfully entering this industry

When looking for trainees we typically look for the following attributes:

  • Attendance of Taster courses, bootcamps etc
  • A full drivers licence
  • Any heights work
  • Any study towards entering the electrical industry i.e. National Certificate in Electrical Supply Level 2
  • Team participation i.e. sports teams etc
  • Hands on/practical work experience/hobbies
  • Someone who has a like of the outdoors
  • Someone that has done research and knows a bit about the electricity industry/Northpower
  • Someone who picks up new skills easily
  • Reasonable level of literacy and numeracy
  • Most employers prefer line mechanics to have completed Year 12 (NCEA Level 2).  Useful subjects include maths, English and science
  • Work in the electrical or communications industries
  • Work involving physical labour
  • Work using hand tools

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