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Ameren Illinois Competing In 2023 Natural Gas Rodeo

Gas workers from East St. Louis, Peoria, and Springfield are gearing up to represent Ameren Illinois at the highly anticipated 2023 National Gas Rodeo, a thrilling two-day competition set to take place on September 14-15 in Springfield, MO. The Gas Rodeo is a prestigious event that draws the finest natural gas workers from across the nation to compete in a series of challenges rooted in traditional tasks and skills.


Ameren Illinois will be sending its top teams to the competition, where they will face off against their counterparts from Ameren Missouri, who will be fielding six teams. The Gas Rodeo is likened to the Olympics for gas journeymen and apprentices, as participants showcase their skills while following strict safety standards. 


Amaren Illinois natural gas workers from Springfield that will be competing include Captain Justin Langley, Zach Roberts, Jason Bardwell, and Lance Alaria. 

Eric Kozak, Vice President for Ameren Illinois says, “It’s all about competing to the best of their abilities in a safe manner. It also gives family members an up-close look at what it takes to do this type of work on an everyday basis.”


The competition comprises several events, each designed to test the participants' expertise and precision in the field. These events include:


A meter set, where competitors must assemble a meter set to "Rodeo standards," ensuring that all components, including fittings, service regulators, meters, meter gaskets, and wrenches, are properly configured. The meter set must be wrench tight, level, use correct fittings, and have the regulator correctly oriented. Judges will evaluate the assembly, and the meter set must accommodate the placement of a judge's box.


A service installation, where teams are tasked with installing a service line with tracer wire from a two-inch plastic main to a service riser bracket. This involves laying out 60 feet of half-inch plastic pipe with tracer wire, inserting it through a 20-foot section of two-inch plastic pipe, attaching the riser to the bracket, and connecting the pipe to the riser using half-inch Permasert. The service tee must be tapped, the service cap installed, and the service pipe purged to complete the installation, all in accordance with "Rodeo standards."


A pipe cut, where Competitors must cut a six-inch 250 Grade B wall pipe using only a mechanical 4-wheel cutter, without any modifications to the cutter.


And a hand dig, where teams are challenged to excavate a 3' x 4' x 3' box filled with a mix of sand and pea gravel. The goal is to expose five green dots painted on the bottom of the box. In this event, two-person teams will dig out a box measuring 3' × 4' × 18 inches.


With the Gas Rodeo just around the corner, Ameren Illinois is eager to demonstrate the exceptional skills and dedication of its natural gas workers. Stay tuned for updates on this thrilling competition as the teams from East St. Louis, Peoria, and Springfield embark on their quest for victory at the 2023 National Gas Rodeo in Springfield, Missouri.

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