It takes a lot of skill to drive a single-axle dump truck with a snowplow or tandem trailer through a marked course without touching a pylon and tipping a tennis ball at the top.

Equally as tough is picking up tennis balls in the bucket on a backhoe boom and placing the balls in small boxes.

Any driver or operator who can perform with a dump truck or backhoe without error is considered skillful. They got a chance to show off their expertise Wednesday during the District 8 Equipment R-o-a-d-e-o on the Super Service parking lot off Ky. 914 bypass.

Sponsored by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, the roadeo is designed to advance skills of Kentucky Department of Highways employees and increase safety awareness around work zones. A safety seminar was held in conjunction with the roadeo.

“Other than a few people left around district offices, all our employees are here,” said Jeff Kiser, highway equipment maintenance and management technician. He said the roadeo involved employees from each of the district headquarters in the 10-county District 8. A total of 150 participated in the event.

Kiser noted that this is the first time the roadeo has been held in several years. He said Transportation Cabinet officials revised the format for the event.

The all-day contest included three events:

1. Single-axle dump truck with snowplow.

2. Single-axle dump truck with tandem trailer.

3. Backhoe

A panel of judges viewed every movement. Negotiate correctly and points were added. Cross a line or touch a pylon and score was zero. A certificate and trophy were awarded to the most skillful operator in each contest event, Kiser noted.

Kiser said such events as the roadeo improve the morale and value of Transportation Cabinet employees.

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