Twelve Kissimmee Utility Authority linemen will compete against a lineup of the best utility linemen in the state at the 20th annual Florida Lineman Competition on March 14 beginning at 8 a.m. at the Tallahassee Automobile Museum.
The annual day-long rodeo hosted by the Florida Municipal Electric Association allows electric linemen to demonstrate their skill, safety and teamwork in a series of timed events based on traditional lineman tasks.
This year’s competition will feature 24 journeyman teams and 77 apprentices. The journeyman teams consist of three members – two climbers and a ground worker – with more than four years of lineworker experience. An apprentice lineworker competes as an individual and has four or fewer years of experience in an apprentice program. Both levels of competition will participate in five timed events.
KUA will field two journeyman teams: Austin Franey, Shane Paras and Billy White, and Nathan Gault, Danny Kelly and Kevon McKinsey.
Cory Breen, Chris Kitting, Brendan Laflamme, Ethan Shellabarger, Billy Sutphin and Shane Yarborough will compete for KUA in the apprentice competition.
“This annual rodeo enables linemen to compete for professional recognition and practice essential skills in a safe environment,” said Larry Mattern, KUA’s vice president of operations. “The competition builds teamwork and tests the readiness of our crews as we prepare for this year’s storm season.”