DOT workers show off skills in Roadeo

Jun. 20, 2014 @ 05:28 PM

Tri-County transportation and maintenance employees competed to be the best heavy machinery drivers in the state this week.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation held its annual Roadeo for Division 5 at the state fairgrounds Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to test equipment operators’ skills.

In the tandem dump truck driving competition, Vance County maintenance driver Dexter Matthews took home second place, and Warren County driver Opie May placed third.

For the second tandem competition, Bobby Thomas took home second place, and Michael Loftis took bronze for Granville County.

Dennis Hargrove, representing the transportation departments of Franklin and Vance County, won third place for effective use of a backhoe, machinery that digs through heavy soils.

Six drivers represented Vance, two Warren and nine Granville. Other counties that sent drivers were Wake, Durham, Franklin and Person.

In friendly competition, participants maneuvering dump trucks, tractors, backhoes, low-boy trailers or motor graders through obstacle courses and mock scenarios.

NCDOT spokesman Steve Abbott said the Roadeo tests the safety awareness and skill level of state personnel who operate heavy machinery.

Winners will return to the Raleigh fair grounds July 23 for the statewide competition.

 

Contact the writer at dhairston@hendersondispatch.com.