Nearly 90 powerline technicians (PLT) arrived in Calgary from across Canada and the United States for a weekend of friendly competition at the 10th ENMAX Rodeo & Safety Expo. This year was our biggest rodeo yet.
More than 900 spectators witnessed precision, speed and safety in action as PLTs competed for the ultimate title in a series of competitions showcasing some of their essential skills.
“Powerline technicians play a critical role in our day-to-day lives, keeping us connected and often times supporting our communities in demanding or dangerous circumstances,” says David Lenz, Vice President, Field Services. “Back in 2012, we started the rodeo to showcase the skills of our PLTs and over the last decade the rodeo has grown into such a special event that also gives back to our community.”
Giving back to our community has become a key goal of the rodeo over the years. This year the Rodeo Committee selected the Children’s Cottage Society as the charitable partner. Thanks to proceeds from the BBQ lunch, t-shirt sales, raffle and the team auction we were able to collectively donate $15,000 towards the Cottage’s new crisis nursery. This donation almost doubled last year and will support children in need in our community.
Competitions, like the Pole Climb Relay, Transformer Change Out and Pole Top Rescue, mimic scenarios PLTs are likely to see on the job and are time based. But like in the real-world, safety trumps speed, with competitors getting demerits for safety infractions.
“The challenging part is trying to perform tasks knowing you're being judged and timed, as soon as the stopwatch comes out, so do the nerves,” says journeyperson competitor Sam Deluca, team lead, technical training and apprentice development. “The fun part is the comradery. There is a sense of pride that I get from competing. Not just pride in showcasing the trade and how cool it is but of being part of something bigger than just the job.”
Rodeo by the numbers
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