with the
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South West Queensland
Electricity Board

by Hugh Williams

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Our Home

In 1982, I had never heard of the town of Tara. A town population of   1000 (1991), a shire area of about 11,614 square kilometers with a total population of about 4,303 (1991) is aproximetly 300 kilometers west of Brisbane, Queensland Australia.
I was offered a position with the Southwest Queensland Electricity Board as the District Inspector for the shire with a staff of three men. It was all very daunting at first having the responsibility for such a big area. With the aid of my very competent, young staff I soon became conversant with my duties.

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Our Depot

We had to do everything from collecting unpaid power bills to repairing 33,000-volt power lines.
The electricity supply industry has gone through many changes since I retired in 1989 but the hard work on line maintenance is still carried out by the tough linemen.
Our Depot was small but well set up with modern well equiped line trucks.

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Line down

Mother Nature takes its toll on the power lines and the poor linesman.
Many stormy nights and occasional floods keep the linesmen busy repairing the damage caused. We see here a pole that has been struck by lightning and the 'live'  12,700 volt line just inches from the ground.

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Bogged again

The Tara shire was one of the first districts to be invaded by settlers in the 80s and 90s when some of the local properties were sub divided into smaller blocks. It was a struggle for these people at first but it has developed with considerable success now with several nice homes.
Being on call for more than 50% of your life was hard but you soon got used to it.

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The Linesmen

After spending 7 years in Tara I retired in 1989 on my 55th birthday and returned to live on the Gold Coast where
I became a member of the
National Servicemen’s association of Australia
and that is another story.

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