KUA Linemen Lasso 10 Trophies at Statewide Rodeo

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., March 19, 10:30 a.m. – Kissimmee Utility Authority (KUA) crews brought home 10 event trophies and the state’s fifth best ranking from Saturday’s 2006 Florida Lineman’s Competition in Kissimmee.

Twenty-four teams and 24 apprentices from municipal utilities throughout Florida gathered at Osceola Heritage Park to recognize the profession of line work as well as demonstrate the safety, skill and education of electric linemen. The rodeo consisted of six timed events.

There are two levels of competition within the rodeo: journeyman teams and apprentice. The journeyman teams consist of three members – two climbers and a ground person. A qualified journeyman has more than four years of experience within the electric utility trade. An apprentice lineworker competes as an individual and has four or fewer years of experience.

KUA was the second most honored utility in the rodeo after Gainesville Regional Utilities.

KUA was honored in the following event categories:

First Place – Refuse and close cutouts – Dustin Kelley
Second Place – Lamp and photocell changeout – Chris Ketner
Third Place – Obstacle course – Chris Ketner
Third Place – Hurtman rescue – Chris Ketner
Third Place – Mutual aid challenge – Chris Ketner (KUA), Matt Schofield (Lakeland Electric), Jason Whitehead (JEA)

Fourth Place – Overall apprentice ranking – Chris Ketner

Journeyman Teams
First Place – 100 amp cutout replacement – Aaron Haderle, Logan Murphy, David Wolfe
Second Place – Mutual aid challenge – Aaron Haderle (KUA), Ivan Nelson (Lakeland Electric) and Gary Sutton (Gainesville Regional Utilities)
Third Place – Mutual aid challenge – Billy Caruthers (Ocala Electric Utility), Jeff Powell (KUA), Matt Redfern (Lakeland Electric)

Fifth Place – Overall team ranking – Aaron Haderle, Logan Murphy, David Wolfe

Competing teams hailed from KUA, City of Bartow, Beaches Energy Services (Jacksonville Beach), Fort Pierce Utilities Authority, Gainesville Regional Utilities, JEA (Jacksonville), Keys Energy Services (Key West), Lakeland Electric, Ocala Electric Utility, Orlando Utilities Commission, Progress Energy and the City of Tallahassee.

KUA linemen will compete in the American Public Power Association’s annual Public Power Lineworkers’ Rodeo in Sacramento, Calif. on April 7-8.

Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility providing electric and telecommunication services to 170,000 residents in five Central Florida counties.

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Chris M. Gent
(407) 933-7777 x 1116