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Photos: Arlington Public Works Crews Test Their Skills in ‘Roadeo’

Arlington County public works staff tested out their snow-plowing, water main-fixing skills — and equipment — during a “roadeo” yesterday (Thursday) at Long Bridge Park.

About 75-100 Water, Sewer, Streets Bureau staff participated as either contestants or judges, Department of Environmental Services spokesman Peter Golkin said. The first equipment “roadeo” in recent years was 2014, although the county used to hold the event in the past, he added.

Contestants demonstrated their ability to navigate Bobcats and snowplows around traffic cones and their precision when maneuvering a backhoe, or digger. This involved guiding a hook attached to the digger through a small metal loop.

Water works crews tested out their ability to assemble water meters in “Meter Madness” and respond to water main breaks in “Rapid Tappin.” This year featured an all-female pipe-tapping team, Golkin said.

Winners of the backhoe and snow plow contests will represent Arlington at a “roadeo” hosted by the Mid-Atlantic chapter of the American Public Works Association next spring. Winners of the water events will compete at the Virginia Section American Water Works Association regional competition on Oct. 5-6.

This video of the 2019 “roadeo,” shot by staff photographer Jay Westcott, gives a closer look at the skills on display during the annual event.

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