Hickory, NC - May 26, 2017
Rodeos throughout the country host events to test skills and abilities that challenge both apprentice and journeyman lineman. One event gaining popularity features the Jack Jumper™ Cutout Bypass Tool from Utility Solutions, Inc. (USI). Lineman compete by climbing a pole to install/remove a Jack Jumper™ in a given amount of time. Like most events, participants are judged on speed and accuracy.
"It could be called a lineman training event instead of a rodeo", says David Dutton, Chief Judge - Jack Jumper™ Event for the 2017 Tennessee Valley Lineman (TVA) Rodeo. "They help a lineman grow in their confidence and skills." David is a foreman for Lenoir City Utility Board in TN and has been involved with the TVA Rodeo for 5 years. This year's event will be held June 9-10 at the Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama.
Since its invention in the late 90's, the Jack Jumper™ has become a standard tool for temporarily bypassing cutouts. "I can remember having to mac out cutouts to change fuse sizes," Dutton says. "The Jack Jumper™ is a great tool and each of our crews has one now."
The TVA Rodeo changed the Jack Jumper™ from an Apprentice event in 2016 to a Senior Individual event for this year's rodeo. "The
first goal of the competitor is to make no mistakes,"
Dutton goes on to say. The linemen will have 8 minutes to finish and cannot drop anything. Judging is based on points.
The 23rd Annual Georgia Lineman's Rodeo was held in Fort Valley Georgia in May this year and used the Jack Jumper™ as the Apprentice Mystery Event. This is when competitors do not know the event details until registration. Scoring was based on time and accuracy. Kaleb Chapman, of Gainesville, completed the Jack Jumper™ event in 4:05 minutes. He ended up being the Georgia Champion Apprentice, finishing first in the overall Apprentice Division and in the EMC Apprentice Division.
Rodeos throughout the country display the latest products and showcase proven work methods. However, the best benefit of rodeos is providing lineman a competitive stage to prove their dedication and skill in a demanding and dangerous occupation.