Energy Queensland has 1.7 million power poles and more than 225,000 km of powerlines across Queensland. Unfortunately, many powerlines are accidentally contacted by workers every year, which can result in severe and sometimes fatal injuries.
Glen Cook, or ‘Cookie’ as he is known, is the Principal Community Safety Specialist at Energy Queensland and has been the driving force behind a new powerline safety innovation that he helped develop. A lifesaving tool to improve worker safety around powerlines, Look up and Live (www.lookupandlive.com.au) is an online mapping application that pinpoints the location of overhead powerlines. Look up and Live app is also now available in app stores — providing powerline safety at your fingertips.
Cookie’s presentation style fosters a positive and proactive approach to powerline safety messages, by building awareness of the dangers of accidental contact with powerlines. Drawing from his experience investigating powerline incidents, he states that there is a clear issue — a distinct lack of planning and powerline awareness. This lack of planning leads to workers not identifying any of the risks or hazards and therefore using no hierarchy of control to mitigate them.
Cookie has been the driving force behind a new powerline safety innovation Look up and Live.
In 2019, Cookie was recognised for his outstanding efforts, being named as a finalist in both the NSCA Foundation & GIO’s National Safety Awards of Excellence and Workplace Health and Safety Queensland’s Queensland Safe Work Awards. In 2020, he was named the winner of the Health and Safety Professional of the Year for the Australian Health and Safety Awards. He was also recognised internationally and was a plenary speaker at the ESRI GeoConX Conference in Atlanta, USA, explaining how the Look up and Live application is changing behaviours and saving lives. With the implementation of the Look up and Live tool there has been an overall reduction in incidents by 25% and a reduction of 50% in the agricultural and earth moving industries.