Hold On To Yer Hardhat Cowboy, A Forklift Rodeo's A'Comin'

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It almost sounds like a joke, as if it’s some kind of weird competition for unemployed warehouse workers wearing leather chaps, but it’s not – it’s a state-sanctioned “Forklift Rodeo” Regional Competition and it’s coming Saturday, Aug. 22nd to Boeing Field!

And lest you think this is just going to just be a buncha warehouse cowboys doing forklift stunts, keep in mind this is a serious, sanctioned event, ‘cuz there’s even a written test involved!

The prizes will range from $50 to $300, as well as some serious braggin’ rights and a chance to move on to the nationals.

In the Forklift Rodeo, drivers are required to use expert forklift operating skills to negotiate a fun and challenging driving course that includes various tasks and hazards. Contestants are evaluated on the safe, efficient, skillful and proper completion of the course using accepted forklift operation standards.

Regional Competition Day Schedule:

  • 9:00 a.m. Registration/Written test
  • 10:00 a.m. Drivers meeting/Course familiarization
  • 10:30 a.m. Driving competition begins

The top five individual competitors from each regional competition will advance to the final competition to be held at the 2009 Governor’s Industrial Safety and Health Conference.

Forklifts will be provided at the competition site, and will consist of sit-down, propane-powered ones with pneumatic tires, standard 42” forks, counterbalanced, with a capacity of 5,000 lbs.

The Forklift Rodeo is being presented by The Material Handling Panel of the Governor’s Industrial Safety & Health Advisory Board and the Department of Labor & Industries.

The entry fee is $40, and here are some other rules:

  • No open-toed shoes allowed
  • An Automatic Transmission 5,000 lb. forklift will be provided
  • The top 5 individual competitors will go to the finals competition.
  • Competition limited to 30 drivers at each region – First come, first served – So register now!

For more information, visit the conference Web site: www.wagovconf.org/forklift.htm

To register, download this PDF form here, or contact: Al Rainsberger at 206-281-3842 or toll free: 1-888-451-2004

We’re thinkin’ this rodeo will be held outside, as the website warns:

“Bring lawn chair and sunscreen. Seating may be limited.”

Now, if any Burien forklift cowboys or cowgirls are plannin’ on competin’, let us know ‘cuz we want to spread the word and get a good crowd cheerin’ ya on!

Here are some videos of forklift rodeos to get an idea of what these events are like:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XHzMdR-F60k http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Avby_vchwQQ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmRbvrkeQis

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