About Us

Kobbeco SA is a family company focusing on the specialist supply of safety equipment for:

  • Live Line Work (LLW).
  • Arc Flash (AF) Prevention and Protection.
  • Work at Height (WAH) Safety.

In 2009 Kobbeco set up its own dielectric test lab, which, after more than eight years of operation and growth, became an independent company in 2016 under the name Kolab Ensayos SL.

Kobbeco has always been committed to promoting the exchange of knowledge. In 2012 it gave a formal structure to this service by creating the Jotekse technical safety conference, where we address the issues of greatest relevance for our customers.

About us Kobbeco
Knowledge of the Industry

More than 50 years working with the major electric utilities and electrical maintenance contractors.

Versatility

Kobbeco is constantly on the lookout for new suppliers to meet our clients’ needs and broaden our range of products.

Close Relationship and Permanent Contact with the Manufacturers

Their technical experts are always available to answer any question regarding product features or applications.

More than Just a Sales Point

Kobbeco is the official distributor of the brands it represents in Spain, an essential requirement to ensure the full validity of the manufacturer’s warranty. Moreover, we do our utmost to provide our clients with all the information they may require (legislation and standards, tool and equipment maintenance information, international events, etc.)

Live Line Work (LLW)

Kobbeco has been supplying Live Working tools, equipment and PPE for more than 50 years.

Live Line Work is "the activity in which a worker makes contact with energised parts or encroaches inside the live working zone with either parts of his or her body or with tools, devices or equipment". Definition provided by the International Electrotechnical Commission.

Live Line Work must be carried out by suitably trained and qualified workers, equipped with special tools for the work required to be performed, strictly in accordance with carefully designed and verified written procedures and methods.

The tools used in Live Line Work are specifically designed for this kind of work, made with materials particularly suited to their intended purpose, especially as regards, insulation, resistance and functionality.

Live Working Methods

There are three different live working methods:

Hotstick Method

Normally used in distribution or medium voltage systems, but alos used for transmission systems.

The linesmen work from ground potential, always observing safety clearances from the energised parts they are working on and any other energised parts in the work area.

They use tools suitable for the tasks required, fitted to the end of insulated hotsticks of sufficient length to enable linesmen at all times to maintain the safety clearances required for the voltage they are working at.

Rubber Glove Method

This is used mainly in low voltage work, and currently more often in distribution. The workers work directly on the energised parts with their hands protected by insulated rubber gloves suitable for the system rated voltage, standing on insulated stools or insulated mats for low voltage work, or on insulated elevating platforms or insulated ladders for distribution voltages.

The hand tools used are covered with suitable insulating material. They can only be used on systems up to 36 kV, as no gloves for higher voltages are available. The rubber used to manufacture the gloves must be as flexible as possible to make them confortable for workers.

Barehand Method

This is used to work at transmission voltages, usually in combination with hotstick work, as the distances required in transmission systems make it difficult to work exclusively with insulated hotsticks. The linesmen work directly in contact with the energized parts, from an insulated ladder or an elevating platform with an insulated boom, which keeps them insulated and at a suitable safety clearance from any parts at different potential in the work area. Due to induction by the electric field of the energized parts and in order to avoid its invluence, barehand workers must be equipped with a full conductive suit, complete with conductive socks, gloves and boots, which will act as a Faraday cage.

History Live Line Work in Spain

A.B. Chance, a hotline tool manufacturer based in Centralia, Missouri (USA) , was the first hotstick manufacturer.

Chance starts making hotsticks for simple operations (first manufacturer).

Starts making strain poles, saddles, hand tools and pruning tools (systems up to 22kV).

Starts working live on systems up to 66kV.

Chance acquires Tips Tools and starts making hotline tools.

Starts working live on systems up to 110 kV.

Suspension string changeout performed on a 287 kV line at Hoover dam in the USA. Specialised tools for EHV work developed.

Starts working at EHV (345 kV).

Chance introduces Epoxiglas FRP tools.

All work performed at 500 kV and 765 kV in the USA and Canada use Chance Epoxiglas tools.

History of the Evolution of Chance Hotsticks

In 1964 Chance appointed as its exclusive distributor in Spain Hugh de Kobbe, who undertook the task of introducing and obtaining approval of hotline work in Spain.

Chance distributor contract for Spain
Signing of Chance Distributorship
Agreement for Spain
Mike Porter report of Chance
Report by Mike Porter

Hugh de Kobbe organised visits by leading Spanish electrical engineers to A.B. Chance and utilities in the US and the UK to learn about live line work.

In March 1968, Chance Engineer Mike Porter travels to Spain, where he visits different facilities and makes recommendations.

In May 1968 Cobra carries out a wooden pole replacement on a 25 kV line in (Sevilla). This is the first live line work to be carried out in Spain.

In 1970 Elecnor also carried out its first live line work in Spain, followed by a long list of contractors, utilities and electrical companies.

All Chance live line tools meet the specifications of IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) and OSHA (American Occupational Safety and Health Agency) standards. These standards are specified in the Chance catalog and Kobbeco can provide them upon request.

Hugh de Kobbe
Hugh de Kobbe
first live line work in Spain (1968)
Photograph provided by
Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios S.A.
first live line work of Elecnor (1973)
Photograph provided by Elecnor S.A.

Hotline Tools and PPE

Kobbeco only supplies products of the highest quality made by pioneering brands in the development of live line work. It works together with manufacturers and users to provide solutions to any issues that arise relating to the applications of live line work to the evolving needs in the industry.

Kobbeco’s product offering includes:

TEREX Insulated Aerial Devices

Since 2007, Kobbeco is an official supplier of Terex products. All the Terex insulated elevating platforms sold in Europe are CE marked and certified in accordance with the 2006/42/EC Machinery Directive and other applicable European legislation. In addition, they are compliant with US (ANSI/SIA A92.2-2015) standard requirements.

Kobbeco supplies a broad range of accessories for the various types of insulated aerial devices: truck body building, liners (protective inner bucket), tool trays and holders, protective covers and rope.

Our after-sale service for insulated aerial devices includes testing, maintenance and repair. For minor maintenance and repair work, this service can be provided at the customer’s facility.

Arc Flash (AF) Prevention and Protection

In 2001 Kobbeco started distributing Salisbury brand arc flash protection switching kits as a complete solution to protect workers from the effects of a potential arc flash or arc blast.

The complete worker protection solution must be the result of a comprehensive assessment of arc flash hazards at the facility. Such assessment should not only identify the potential hazards for workers, but also the changes required in order to mitigate the risks. Once such risk has been reduced, protection is provided to workers from head to toes, through the use of specially designed clothes made with inherent protection materials suitable for the level of risk to which the worker will be exposed.

Kobbeco offers both switching kits for temporary use and working clothes for continuous use, incorporating high visibility features. All the arc flash protection equipment meets the NFPA 70E standard requirements and is CE marked.

Face and head protection
  • Hard hat and safety face shield with integrated chin protection
  • Hood
  • Front opening hood
  • Face protection replacement
  • Balaclava
  • Safety glasses
  • Protective earplugs
Limb protection
  • Dielectric insulating gloves
  • Leather protector gloves
  • Glove bag
  • Portable glove inflator
  • Insulating sleeves
  • Overshoes
Arc Flash Protection clothes from 8 to 100 cal/cm2
  • Jacket
  • Bib
  • Overalls
  • Overtrousers
  • Arc flash protection kit
    • Protection Equipment Kits 12 cal/cm2
    • Protection Equipment Kits 40 cal/cm2
    • Protection Equipment Kits 40 cal/cm2
Other accessories
  • Full body arc flash protection harness

JOTEKSE

Since its inception, Kobbeco helped bring live line work know-how and techniques into Spain. It organised visits with Spanish utility engineers to the US and brought trainers from the US over to Spain, thus promoting the sharing of knowledge that would eventually make live working possible in Spain.

Since 2012, Kobbeco went one step further in this direction with the creation of joteKse, a two-year cycle of conferences to further promote the dissemination of knowledge in the areas of safety in which it is involved.

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