Life is a Rodeo for these Forklift Champs Caught on Video

March 24, 2014
Forklift rodeos are not only great places to see goofy tricks, but they also provide a global stage for industry to demonstrate the teaming of safety and skill.

When you see a forklift on the news it’s usually not good news. As MH&L depicted in previous video galleries, forklifts have been used to rob ATMs and destroy warehouses. But recently, Wisconsin Lift Truck gave its local Fox affiliate, FOX6 News, reasons to be amazed by the skills of good forklift operation. The dealer hosted a forklift rodeo challenge at the PFMA’s Plant Engineering and Maintenance Expo March 12th, partnering with Steel King Industries and Storage Battery Systems.

The event, depicted in the first video of this gallery, was held at the Wisconsin Expo Center at State Fair Park with 4,800 Plant Engineers & Maintenance Managers attending. Fourteen drivers representing companies such as Arandell Corporation, Gaco Western, Color Ink, Wildeck Inc., Warehouse Specialists Inc., Prop Shaft Supply, Osmose Inc., Hot Water Products, etc. competed for the title of forklift rodeo champion.

Stage one of the competition began with slaloming an electric Mitsubishi FB16NT lift truck through an obstacle course with a pallet holding a cone and tennis ball. Other challenges in the course included a high-stack challenge as well as attempting to balance a pallet on top four cones.  Stage two of the course required drivers to use an electric Linde E25PL to pick up basketballs with just their forks and shoot baskets into two different sized containers.
Each contestant’s time had 30 seconds added to it for any infraction. The driver with the shortest amount of time won. That driver was Bill Krivoshein from Arandell Corporation. He completed the course in 7:05, winning the grand prize of $500 cash and the rodeo champion plaque. Second place was Mark Karpinen of Osmose Inc. with a time of 7:23, winning a $100 gift card.  Jason Wick of Color Ink came within seconds of Mark, taking third place and winning a $50 gift card with his time of 7:27.

The greatest lesson from this event?

“Driving a forklift may look easy, but driving one safely in a fast-paced operation requires the right training and expertise,” said David Hermann, safety director of Wisconsin Lift Truck. “The rodeo proved to be an excellent opportunity for drivers to showcase that expertise and bring focus to the importance of forklift safety and the material handling industry itself.”

The skills of these operators inspired MH&L to put together this gallery of highlights from other Forklift Rodeos, demonstrating unusual and inventive ways companies have tested the capabilities of their operators. You can watch them by advancing through the text windows to the right of the above image and clicking on the links in them. Enjoy.


View MH&L's other video galleries:

Videos on OSHA’s Top Violations

Physics-Flouting Forklifts Caught on Video

Dock Accidents by Land and Sea

Warehouse Disasters Caught on Video

Stupidity in the Warehouse Caught on Video

Bad Truck Drivers Caught on Video

See Who's Making Google-Glassed Eyes at Your Business

More Dumb Things People Do with Forklifts [VIDEO GALLERY]

Forklift Man Cages: Right and Wrong, Caught on Video

Life is a Rodeo for these Forklift Champs Caught on Video

Crime by Forklift Caught on Video

The Consequences of Gravity--Caught on Video

"Struck-By" Forklift Accidents Caught on Video

Conveyor Danger—Caught on Video

Fuel Cell Forklifts--Pros & Cons on Video

Bulk Container Handling Hazards Caught on Video

Bad Forklift Training Caught on Video

Meet Your Material Handling's International Influences

Job Interviews from Hell on Video

Material Handling Failures Caught on Video

Politicians on Forklifts Caught on Camera

The Artistic Beauty and Political Ugliness of Scanning—Caught on Video