On June 9, participants from 12 cities across Texas gathered at Cohen Stadium in El Paso, Texas, for the annual Solid Waste Association of North America Lonestar Chapter (TxSWANA) Road-E-O. The annual event is an opportunity for landfill equipment and collection truck drivers to showcase skills in competitive events. Four courses were organized including an automatic side loader obstacle course, a rear loader and roll-offs competition, a tractor-trailer course and a landfill equipment course.

“This is a great event,” said Holly Holder, PE, environmental sector director at PSC. “It’s fun to watch these guys show their abilities to operate equipment in landfill events or collection truck events. These guys have a lot of camaraderie, and the winner gets to take home a nice belt buckle. It’s a great opportunity for them to showcase their skills.”

2018 TxSWANA Road-E-O from Parkhill, Smith & Cooper on Vimeo.

Jesus Yamaguchi, solid waste manager for the City of El Paso, said the planning process for this event has taken about a year and having four obstacle courses at this type of event is uncommon. Overall, he said the event is beneficial for the solid waste community.

The event is an opportunity for healthy competition but also for networking and learning opportunities. Jesus said he thinks the participants learn more here than they would at a conference or in training.

“When you start talking to somebody else one-on-one ‘Hey, what is it that you guys do?’ you start bringing those ideas from El Paso over to San Antonio, San Antonio over to El Paso, or other cities like that,” he said. “You start building that and you start networking outside. That’s  when you learn a little more than like in a training.”

Ellen Smyth, PE, director of environmental services for the City of El Paso, said she is grateful for all the sponsors who helped with the event. The event included was a welcoming night, official t-shirts and hats, hotdogs and tacos provided and an awards dinner at Cattleman’s Steakhouse in Fabens, Texas.

PSC was one of the many Road-E-O sponsors, and PSC employees Holly, Nick Ybarra and Tyler Krueger served as judges for two of the courses.

“I’d like to thank our sponsors, all of them,” Ellen said. “We couldn’t do this without you, so thank you for your support every year. We appreciate it, especially Parkhill, Smith & Cooper.”