Crawfordsville Street Department prepares for winter with annual ‘Snow Plow Roadeo’

A snow plow driver tries to serpentine his way through the cones at the 7th annual Snow Plow Roadeo. (WLFI photo)
A snow plow driver tries to serpentine his way through the cones at the 7th annual Snow Plow Roadeo. (WLFI photo)

CRAWFORDSVILLE. Ind. (WLFI) — City workers in Crawfordsville are preparing for winter with a Snow Plow Roadeo.

Eleven Crawfordsville Street Department employees competed in the seventh annual Snow Plow Roadeo on Thursday.

Each driver was timed as they drove through an obstacle course, while trying to avoid hitting orange cones but trying to hit green cones.

The event allows the street department to make sure the equipment is working properly and to give the drivers some practice for the real thing.

“When you’re in the plow truck you can’t see those cones, like, when you’re plowing you can’t see where the curbs are,” said Scott Hesler, the Crawfordsville street commissioner. “You lose sight of mailboxes and different things, so this just gives them a really good appreciation for what they’re going to encounter when they start actually plowing snow.”

The winner gets their name on a plaque and the top two finishers get a gift card to a local restaurant. But more importantly, the winner gets bragging rights among his co-workers.

“Some will say, ‘Well, I don’t care.’ But they all care because they all want to beat that next person and whoever wins it the year before, they want to knock that guy off his throne. So it’s a very competitive thing out here,” said Troy Payne, a plow driver and machine operator for the street department.

Each year the street department lets all three of the area elementary schools paint one of their plow blades.

The event will conclude Friday with a Celebrity Snow Plow Roadeo with area politicians and school administrators driving the plows.