Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) recently hosted its annual Technician Skills Competition, which tests the abilities of technicians from Freightliner and Western Star dealerships and Detroit distributors in the United States and Canada to diagnose and repair a variety of DTNA’s vehicle and engine products.
Out of more than 1,000 participants who entered this year’s virtual competition and from the group of 28 finalists, Kyle Siebert from Northwest Trucks, Palatine, Ill., was the winner of the vehicle category and Ryan Picken from Metro Freightliner Hamilton, Stoney Creek, Ontario, won the engine category. The winners will receive a diagnostic laptop, electrical tools, branded items and select merchandise of their choice for their entire shop.
This year’s competition began with a written exam in June and culminated with the virtual “hands-on” round, with finalists completing the challenges at their respective locations. The judges walked the finalists through different stations where they were evaluated on how accurately they were able to troubleshoot problems.
“It required a lot of creativity to translate what normally would have been a hands-on and in-person event into a virtual competition,” says Mike Mallett, DTNA training programs manager.
“Because the technicians had to verbalize their rationale for all proposed actions, the virtual format afforded the judges fantastic insight into the diagnostics and troubleshooting approaches of those competing,” Mallett says. “Congratulations to Kyle and Ryan for winning this year’s competition and thank you to all of our engine and vehicle technicians who continually provide our customers with the highest level of efficiency and expertise to maximize uptime.”
With a service network spanning the U.S. and Canada, DTNA and its affiliated service locations invest more than $20 million in technician training and development annually.