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Spokane Hosts Regional Forklift Rodeo Competition

Professional forklift drivers in Eastern Washington state are invited to the Spokane Fire Department Regional Readiness Complex on July 17 to compete in the second of three regional qualifying forklift rodeos. The first regional competition was held in June in Richland, and the final regional event will be Aug. 21 in Auburn.

The top five winners from each of the three events will compete in the 13th Annual Forklift Rodeo to be held Sept. 29 during the 59th Governor’s Industrial Safety and Health Conference in Spokane, an event that is co-sponsored by the Governor’s Industrial Safety and Health Advisory Board and the Department of Labor & Industries.

The forklift rodeos have typically drawn the best forklift drivers from around the state. Last year’s individual winners included drivers from Boeing and VersaCold, a cold-storage warehousing and distribution firm.

Competing drivers must first pass a written exam and inspect a forklift before going on to the obstacle course, completing several tasks that include moving pallets, lengths of pipes and cartons, and driving backwards through a slalom course.

The top seven drivers in the regional competitions earn cash prizes ranging from $50 to $300. In the finals, prizes range from $100 to $500 for the top five drivers. Participation is limited to the first 30 drivers who register.

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