Powell County’s Patrick Graham wins overall individual championship
JACKSON, KY – It took an extra day to complete the competition, but after the storm clouds cleared, the crew from the Morgan County Kentucky Department of Highways maintenance garage won the overall team championship in District 10’s annual Equipment Roadeo. Patrick Graham, an equipment operator from the Powell County crew, won the overall individual championship on the strength of victories in two of the individual events.
Individual event winners hailed from Estill, Morgan and Powell counties.
This year’s Roadeo began on Wednesday, June 14, but strong thunderstorms late in the afternoon delayed completion of the event until the next morning. Participants who had not finished the competition Wednesday afternoon were given the opportunity to complete the Roadeo on Thursday morning.
The annual Roadeo brings equipment operators from the district’s county garages together for a day of friendly competition and fellowship. The event allows equipment operators from the district’s crews to show their skills in operating the equipment they use to maintain state highways in the district. The obstacle courses simulate actual situations equipment operators may encounter in the performance of their duties.
Individual event winners were:
· Backhoe: Patrick Graham, Powell County, first place; Scott Prater, Morgan County, second place.
· Snowplow obstacle course: Matt Howard, Morgan County, first place; Josh Howard, Magoffin County, second place. (This event ended in a tie, and a tiebreaker was used to determine the champion).
· Tractor with mower: Algin Moreland, Estill County/District 10 Equipment Garage, first place; John Rose, Wolfe County, second place.
· Grader: Patrick Graham, Powell County, first place; Reed Graham, Wolfe County, second place.
The individual contest winners and runners-up will advance to a statewide competition against participants from the other 11 highway districts across Kentucky, to be held at the Kentucky Horse Park June 26-28. State winners will be eligible to participate in the annual Southeastern Regional Equipment Operators Safety Training Conference competition, to be held in the Sevierville/Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, Tenn. area later this year.
“Our county maintenance crew members have to work in all sorts of weather conditions and are subject to being called out at any time of the day or night,” said Corbett Caudill, chief district engineer. “Our personnel do an excellent job maintaining our state highways and responding to emergency situations caused by the weather or other issues. Operating the equipment necessary to maintain our highways year-round, and to keep them clear of snow and ice in the winter, takes a lot of skill and knowledge. The Roadeo gives our employees a chance to show off their abilities. It also gives our employees from our county garages, who don’t get to have much interaction with other crews on a regular basis, a chance to know that they are all part of one team and that we appreciate all of them for their effort and hard work.”
District 10 encompasses the counties of Breathitt, Estill, Lee, Magoffin, Menifee, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Powell and Wolfe in east-central and southeastern Kentucky.