2024 Gaff-n-Go Event Information

The GAFF-n-GO LINEWORKER’S RODEO will provide you the opportunity to compete in a challenging environment demonstrating the skills that are required in your everyday work. Stay ahead of the pack, maintain your physical skills, and keep abreast of the latest technology. Show the world a snapshot of what today’s lineworker is all about!

Join us in the heart of central Virginia to meet and compete with the “best of the best.” Bring the family and enjoy an action-packed weekend. Join us at the ANNUAL GAFF-n-GO LINEWORKER’S RODEO AND EXPO!

The GAFF-n-GO LINEWORKER’S RODEO attracts the best lineworkers from the east coast to compete in traditional lineworker tasks. A maximum of 60 Journeyman teams and individual Apprentices from Cooperatives, Investor-Owned Utilities, Municipals and Contractors will fill out the competition.

Drone Operator Competition - Click the arrow on the right to open event information

Licensed UAS-107 pilots will assemble, launch and successfully navigate their drones through a course while photographing signage and objects for accuracy and clarity before landing on a designated target. Pilots will be judged on time, accuracy and clarity of images. This event will follow the Equipment Operator competition on Friday afternoon.

Apprentice Events - Click the arrow on the right to open event information

Friday May 17th - 5:00 p.m. –
All questions will be taken from The Lineman’s and Cableman’s Handbook,13th Edition

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation – Automated External Defibrillation (CPR w/ A.E.D.)

 

The purpose of this event is for the apprentice lineman to demonstrate proper care of a co-worker who suffers sudden cardiac arrest. This is a two-part event consisting of a demonstration of the physical skills needed for performance of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation/Automated External Defibrillation followed by a written test on these same skills.

An apprentice and a journeyman have just left the line truck and are preparing to begin work. The journeyman suffers sudden cardiac arrest and collapses to the ground.  As subsequent assessments will reveal, his normal breathing has ceased. The manikin will represent the journeyman. One of the judges will be a Good Samaritan who will call 911 and retrieve AED.

  • Time starts at the Judge’s signal. Apprentice will go to the aid of the Journeyman following the protocols of Guidelines 2010, One Rescuer CPR Adult with AED.

  • For purposes of this event, time will stop after 3 cycles of compressions and breathes have been given following the first shock.
  • Each contestant will be issued his own individual sanitized face piece; therefore it will not be necessary to utilize a face shield. This exercise does not require the use of protective gloves.

Materials Provided
CPR Manikin with checking instruments and AED trainer.
Face piece 

Written Test
Following the CPR/AED Skills Demonstration Exercise, each participant will take a written test pertaining to the skills needed in the demonstration portion of this event.  Each correct answer will be worth two (2) points. The total time for the written test will be recorded to the thousandths and will be used as a tie-breaker in the event of a tie in the total points earned by participants in this event. Participant will signal judge when ready to start and stop.

Skills Demonstration Exercise Mean Time
The event mean time is only the mean time for the skills demonstration portion of this event, and is not to be used as a tie breaker. Exceeding the mean time of five (5) minutes will result in a two (2) point deduction.  The time recorded for each participant in the skills demonstration part of this event is used only to determine whether the participant has exceeded the mean time of the skills part of this event.

Start Time
The event judge will indicate time to start after the participant says they are ready. This applies for both the skills demonstration and written test parts of this event.

Stop Time
The participant will signal the event judge when they are finished with the written portion of the event. The judge will stop the time on the CPR w/ AED portion of the event. (see first bullet above).

Mean Time: 5 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 10 Minutes

 

In this event, each Apprentice will demonstrate the skills needed to climb, maneuver, and work aloft safely. Several stops require specific tasks that the climber must accomplish before moving on.  There will be double crossarms at each location.

  • Each Apprentice will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • Work gloves will be required for this event.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • The climber will climb to the first set of arms where a pin insulator will be removed, transferred to the other side of the pole on the opposite crossarm and reinstalled.
  • The climber continues up the pole to the next set of crossarms.  At this stop, the climber must remove a collar rope from one side of the arms and move it to the opposite side of the arms resting on the arm between the insulators and the pole.
  • The climber continues to the last set of crossarms.  At this stop, the climber must unpin the deadend insulator and reinstall it on the other side of the pole on the opposite crossarm.  Cotter pin shall be installed side closest to the pole.
  • After transferring the deadend insulator at the last stop the climber will see a canvas bag at the pole top containing a cow bell.  The climber will remove the cow bell from the canvas bag and ring it.  Once rung, the cow bell will be placed back in the bag.
  • Once all tasks have been completed the climber shall descend the pole.
  • Time stops when the climber touches the ground.

Mean Time: 5 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 10 Minutes

 

In this event, each Apprentice will demonstrate the skills needed to pull up a downed conductor, re-sag it and connect a streetlight.  Several skills will be required to complete this event including the use of a grip, slack blocks and perform dead end ties.  The street light wire will be a mechanical bolt on connection.  Each apprentice will get a pre-job brief that they will have to remember to answer the judges’ questions at the end of the event.

  • Each Apprentice will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • Work gloves will be required for this event.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • Using good work practices, the climber will ascend the pole and raise the conductor up using equipment provided.  This equipment may include a P-Line, slack blocks, collar rope and grip.
  • Once the conductor is properly sagged, the climber will install a dead-end preform and make the mechanical connection for the streetlight.
  • Once the streetlight connection is made and the equipment used is lowered to the ground, the climber shall descend the pole until their belt goes below a designated mark approximately 5’ below the bottom conductor and yell “CLEAR”
  • Time stops when the climber yells “CLEAR”
  • Once time stops, the climber will ascend the pole, remove the mechanical streetlight connection and lower the conductor back to the ground, then descend to the ground.
  • All equipment must be back on the tarp at the end of the event.
  • Although time has stopped, the climber will continue to be judged until they are on the ground and have answered any of the judge’s questions.

Mean Time: 4 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 8 Minutes

 

Construction: 10’ cross arms with wood braces. Brace mountings will be 30” out and 21” down from the arm (gain) hole. 40’ Class 4 poles. Buckingham will supply the 50061A-4/80-Ox Block 80’

Handline Kit for this event.

Time starts at the judge’s signal with the apprentice standing at an arm’s length from the pole wearing work gloves. The apprentice’s belt and hooks will be lying on the ground beside him an arm’s length from the pole, safety strap snapped into D-ring and belt unbuckled. No belt will be allowed to be placed on or around the pole.

Looking at the pole from the cross-arm side, the hand line will be hung on the right side. The hurt man will hang in the center of the pole on the cross-arm side, with both sides of the safety strap through the braces. This will simulate an injury to a right-handed man, wearing a fall arrest belt. The apprentice must properly use the Buckingham OxBlock and attached handline to lower the manikin. The apprentice will not be allowed to throw the handline over the cross arm to lower the manikin. If you are unsure as to how to properly use the Buckingham OxBlock handline, visit the Buckingham booth at the expo for detailed instructions.

The mannequin should be tied under the arms with three half hitches. (Eye splice should not be used as part of hitches.) The half hitch is the only acceptable knot.

Be sure to call out “Headache” or similar warning loudly if you drop any part of the OxBlock handline such as the hook or snap. The handline hook or snap must land in the circle of wood chips at the base of the pole if dropped.

You must cut the painted section of the safety strap. There will be a 10-point deduction for cutting the strap in the wrong place. The mannequin should be moved smoothly to the ground, without contacting the pole.

Time is over when the mannequin is on the ground and the rope is slack. Mannequin initial contact with ground must be within the work circle.

Contestant will continue to be judged until workstation is put back together.

After Apprentice descends from pole, he will be judged on tying a BOWLINE knot.

Contestants must use the Buckingham OxBlock hand line provided and must have a minimum of two (2) full wraps/three (3) clicks on friction bar gate on the “OxBlock”.

Judges will use a length of 3” PVC to evaluate the rope knotted around the mannequin.

Journeyman Events - Click the arrow on the right to open event information

Mean Time: 8 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 14 Minutes

 

In this event, each climber will demonstrate the skills needed to climb, maneuver, and work aloft safely. Several stops require specific tasks that the climber must accomplish before moving on.

The pole for the working skills event will simulate a double crossarm pole damaged by a storm. The pole will have a set of double 10’ arms at the top with the brace bolt missing and the arms will be leaning to one side of the pole.  The crossarms will have two post type heavy insulators and a cutout installed on the downward side of the arms. There will also be two brackets on the pole with an arrestor attached to one of the brackets as well as a fiber splice can.

  • Teams will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • For this event, ground to ground rubber glove rules apply.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • The climber will climb to the first position and transition over the fiber splice can.
  • The climber continues up the pole to the double bracket position and transfers the arrestor from one bracket to the other.
  • The climber will then ascend to the tilted crossarms. With the assistance of the groundman, the climber will pull the crossarms to a horizontal position and install a brace bolt through both sets of braces in the pre-drilled hole securing the crossarm.
  • The climber will then descend the pole transitioning over the arrestor brackets and the fiber splice can.
  • Once the first climber reaches the ground, the second climber will then ascend to the crossarms, transitioning over the fiber splice can and arrestor brackets.
  • With the assistance of the groundman, the second climber will remove the brace bolt and return the crossarms to the tilted position in a controlled manner.
  • The second climber will then descend the pole to the arrestor brackets and move the arrestor back to its original position.
  • The second climber will then descend the pole transitioning over the fiber splice can.
  • Time stops when the second climber’s foot touches the ground.

Mean Time: 4 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 8 Minutes

 

This will be a three-man team event with all three contestants participating at the same time and at the same station. One judge will be the initial responder to the emergency call and one judge will run the stopwatch and observe the team for infractions. Both judges can deduct points from a team. Time starts when the judge’s signal “GO”. This event simulates a lineman has been injured while working on a transformer. Buckingham will supply the 50061A-4/80-Ox Block 80’ Hand line Kit for this event.

A shotgun stick will be locked in the eye of the high side jumper hot line clamp. The fuse barrel will be in the closed position, high side jumper will be connected to the primary, thus indicating that the transformer is still energized. An extendo-stick will be lying on the tarp. When time starts, the groundman will raise the extendo-stick and open the cutout using the ring in the barrel before anyone has made any un-insulated contact with the handline or pole. Both the handline and pole are considered at a different potential until the disconnect is open. After the disconnect is open the climbing journeyman will ascend the pole and lift the high side jumper, prior to lowering the mannequin. One groundman/lineman will simulate calling for emergency help using a prewritten script provided by the International Lineman’s Rodeo. The second groundman/lineman will open the disconnect and then assist the climber.

Prior to start:

Each team has five minutes to ask questions and adjust belts. The handline may not be repositioned during the setup. The event judge will position the handline the same way for each contestant, the hook shall be at the “OxBlock”.

The lineman’s belt and hooks will be hanging on a structure simulating hanging in a truck bin, with safety straps snapped into D- ring and belt unbuckled.

Rubber gloves are (will be) inside the glove bag at the start of the event and are required for the climber, ground to ground. Rubber gloves are also required for the groundman or journeyman if they intend to come into contact with the handline or pole prior to opening the disconnect.

The 40-foot pole will be framed as follows:

Single phase primary tied in on a pole top pin.

25 KVA transformer located 7’6” from the top of the pole to the top transformer bracket.

Closed disconnect is located 4’ from the top of the pole.

Hand line is hung on the switch bracket and block must remain there during rescue.

Neutral conductor will be located 3’ below the top transformer bracket. The hurt man hangs in the center of the pole on the top transformer bracket.

The hand line may not be relocated during the rescue and shall not be touched by the contestants prior to start time.

The hurtman may be lowered in any manner, as long as it is a controlled descent and does not hang up on anything. The remaining team members on the ground will help the climber lower the hurtman.

The mannequin shall be tied under the arms with three half hitches. (Eye splice should not be used as part of hitches.) The half hitch is the only acceptable knot.

The lineman on the pole must call out “Headache” loudly if any item is dropped.

The painted strap is the only acceptable cut on the mannequin’s belt. There will be a 10-point deduction for cutting the belt in the wrong place.

The mannequin should be moved smoothly to the ground. Contact with the pole is acceptable. Mannequin initial contact with ground must be within the work area circle.

Time is over when the mannequin is on the ground and the rope is slack. Groundman must signal slack in the rope. Contestants must use the hand line provided.

All point deductions are added together and subtracted from “100” for the team score. The groundmen will assist in hanging the hurt man mannequin for the next team.

Judges use a 3” PVC conduit between the rope and the mannequin to evaluate the spacing in the rope knot.

Start:

Time starts when judge says “GO”. The climbing Journeyman will remove his tools from the structure and immediately proceed to the work circle where he will tool up. He may put his belt on while moving to the circle; but may only put climbers on while in the work circle. One of the remaining competitors will begin to call the dispatcher using the supplied script. One judge will act as the dispatcher and will respond according to the script. The competitor calling for help must complete the written script. Once the judge acknowledges the call for help, it is considered completed, and that competitor should proceed to help the other two. The competitor not making the emergency call must retrieve the extendo-stick from the tarp and using the ring on the barrel, open the disconnect. He must then retract the extend-stick and place it back on the tarp. Once the disconnect is open the lineman may start his ascent to rescue the injured lineman, the other competitors may assist the climber in the rescue. The climber will ascend the pole, use the shotgun stick to lift the high side jumper, leave the stick locked into the hot line clamp, and proceed to rescue the hurt man. The hand line will not be considered “hot” after the fuse barrel has been opened. The climber may rig the hurt man at his discretion. The hurt man must be lowered in a controlled descent; however, the hand line or hand line block cannot be relocated. The two groundmen will assist in lowering the hurt man; time stops when the hurt man mannequin is on the ground and slack is evident in the rope. A groundman must verbally signal that slack is in the rope.

Although the time has stopped, the team will continue to be judged until the event is restored, their score verified and have left the exit gate of the event. (proper work practices will be used while restoring the event, including properly using ring on barrel to close switch, etc.)

Exceeding 4 minutes to complete the event will result in a two-point deduction.

Judges will use a 3” PVC conduit between the rope and the mannequin to evaluate the rope knot. Points will not be deducted only for a knot too loose.

Mean Time: 8 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 12 Minutes

 

This is a 15 KV energized event. The event consists of changing out the center phase capacitor of a three-phase capacitor bank.  The capacitor bank cut-outs will need to be opened from the ground with an extendo-stick prior to ascending the pole.  Once the bank is open, the team must simulate and/or communicate to the judge that the bank has been de-energized for five minutes.

The team must then use a ground to discharge each capacitor. (The capacitors are always to be left shunted). The team will remove the bad center phase capacitor and lower it to the six-foot mark on the pole.  The groundman will send the capacitor up on the handline for replacement and the team will restore the capacitor bank back to normal.  Once both climbers are off the pole, the groundman shall close the cut-outs, energizing the capacitor bank.

  • Teams will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • Ground to ground rubber-glove rules apply.
  • Extendo must be retracted when not in use.
  • Both sides of neutral and spool must be covered.
  • Grounds for capacitors must be installed with shot gun stick.
  • Capacitor being replaced and new capacitor must be shunted at all times.
  • Capacitor must be lowered to the six-foot mark.
  • Time stops when the last cut-out is closed.
  • All materials and tools must be sent up/down with hand line and all tools must be on the tarp.

Mean Time: 10 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 15 Minutes

 

This is a 15 KV energized event. The event consists of changing out an arrestor on an Underground (UG) riser installed on a bracket.  The overhead line must be de-energized, tested, tagged, and grounded.  The radial UG cable must be de-energized, tested, tagged, and grounded in the UG enclosure located adjacent to the riser pole. 

Once the lines are grounded, the bad arrestor may be removed and lowered to the ground with a handline.  The groundman will provide a new arrestor which will be reinstalled.  Once the work is complete, the tags and grounds shall be removed.  Once climbers are off the pole, the line shall be re-energized and back to its original condition.

  • Teams will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • Ground to ground / Lock to Lock rubber-glove rules apply.
  • Overhead and Underground lines shall be tested with a contact tester.
  • Overhead line shall be tagged with pole wrap.
  •  Extendo stick must be retracted when not in use.
  • Underground line shall be tagged at the enclosure.
  • Overhead ground must be installed with a shot gun stick.
  • Underground elbow shall be removed/installed and grounded with a shot gun stick.
  • Enclosure must be secured before being energized.
  • Time stops when the line is re-energized by closing the cut-out.
  • All materials and tools must be sent up/down with hand line and all tools must be on the tarp.

 

Mean Time: 8 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 12 Minutes

This is a dead event.  The line will be simulated de-energized and grounded.  The event consists of framing a dead end pole, transferring the primary and neutral to the new pole and retiring the hardware from the old pole. 

Utilizing good work practice, the neutral and primary conductor shall be transferred under tension utilizing a hoist on each pole.  The lineworkers will need to work as a team to accomplish this transfer successfully.  Once the transfers are complete, the hardware from the old pole shall be removed and lowered to the ground.

  • Teams will be allowed a 5-minute setup time before starting the event.
  • Time starts at judge’s signal.
  • Guy must be pulled before transferring wire.
  • When transferring wire from pole to pole, the tension should remain the same, which will be measured by a mid-span gauge.
  • Time stops when the last climber touches the ground.

All materials and tools must be sent up/down with hand line and all tools must be on the tarp.

TEREX Truck Events - Click the arrow on the right to open event information

Mean Time: 4 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 8 Minutes

This event will be a combined event where the bucket rescue will be performed in conjunction with the cutout change event.

The scenario is after replacing the cutout the lineman contacted an energized phase.

Time for the cutout change event will start on the judge’s signal.

The Lineman will safely get onto the truck, climb into the bucket, and don his harness. A mannequin will be in the double bucket with the Lineman. The Groundman will give a handline to the operator in the bucket.

The Lineman will move into position at the cutout bracket and attach his handline to the crossarm. The Lineman will remove the cutout and send it down on the handline. The Groundman will send a new cutout to the Lineman who will attach it to the bracket. Once the cutout is installed the Lineman will railroad the handline to the Groundman. When the handline is dropped the time for the cutout change will stop.

The Lineman will then position the bucket with the lip of the bucket resting on the far phase. When the judge says contact was made the bucket rescue time will start.

The Groundman or Lineman 2 will make a MAYDAY call while the other moves to the lower controls and brings the bucket to the ground. Once the bucket is on the ground Lineman 1 will exit the bucket and will assist in tilting the bucket and removing the mannequin from the bucket. Time will stop when the mannequin is on the ground simulating CPR.

Mean Time: 8 Minutes

Drop Dead Time: 12 Minutes

This is a team event with two of the three members operating.

This event consists of two stations:

Vehicle #1 Digger/Derrick

Vehicle #2 Mini-Excavator

Each station/vehicle will be operated by two team members.

The event begins with team members in the circle.

Time starts on the judge’s signal.

Vehicle #1 will pick up a load (pre-hooked and positioned in a target circle) and maneuver it through a set of cones.  The load will be maneuvered and placed in a target circle.  Once the load has been lowered into the target circle, the load will be maneuvered back through the cones and lowered into the original target circle.  At this point, the operator of D/D #1 has completed his task.

Vehicle #2 will pick up a load and move around an obstacle (Cargo Trailer).  The load will be set down in a target circle.  Once the load is in place, pick it back up and move to the original target circle.  The load will be unhooked from the mini and placed back in the original place.  Another team member will assist with the mini operator using only hand signals.  No verbal communication allowed between the team member on the ground and the operator. 

Digger/Derrick and the mini-excavator will be operated simultaneously.

The event will stop when all three team members are in the circle.