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Prerequisites For Becoming A Heavy Equipment Operator

Oct 11, 2007
Heavy Equipment(HE) comprises of very bulky machinery like cranes, forklifts, excavators, and bulldozers that are very heavy and need specially trained people to operate them. These people are called as heavy equipment operators and are also responsible for overall maintenance and repair of these machines. Specialized in different types of equipments such as graders, backhoes, bulldozers, and cranes, heavy equipment operators need to have skills that can help them in dealing with the changing demands of their job. If you wish to become a heavy equipment operator, here are some things that you must know.

An important prerequisite for heavy equipment operators is the ability to control different types of gears that include levers, switches, turn dials, pedals, and hydraulic controls. As a part of the job, you are required to perform rigorous tasks like operating the mining equipment, or the excavation and road construction equipment that is commonly used to excavate, grade, and landscape the earth. Not that you cannot make a decent living from this type of career; if you are prepared to meet the challenges of this career, there are plenty of growth opportunities for you. But, just like any other career, this one also requires formal training and education to develop skills needed for the job. Specialized schools impart these skills to aspirants wanting to take up a career in heavy equipment operations.

You also need to have a commercial driver license along with a high school diploma its equivalent to qualify for this post. A little experience in truck driving and some know how of construction machinery is an added advantage if you wish to pursue a career pertaining to heavy equipment. To become a HE operator, you should have adequate knowledge of the safety rules, hazards, and necessary precautions as required by traffic laws prevailing in that state. You should be flexible when it comes to learning new skills and willing to shoulder more responsibilities and should be able to work in harmony with different people that you come across during the course of your work.

In addition, working conditions may not be exactly "enjoyable", as you will have to work at construction sites and other sites in scorching heat. Job responsibilities are not limited to operations alone and you need to continuously keep a track of the machines to ensure that they are in working condition all the time and if a problem should arise, immediately report it to the supervisor. You should be physically strong enough to lift heavy weights and have the ability to judge distances to be able to operate machines efficiently.

Depending on the state you are in, you may be additionally required to have special licenses to be able to operate certain equipment. Having a degree from a certain community colleges and vocational schools who offer an Associate's Degree or a certificate gives you an edge over others.

For a more promising career in this line, you may go for apprenticeships that typically last for about three years after the completion of which you may be in a better position to do the job due to the extensive training you will receive in handling variety of sophisticated machines.
About the Author
Heavy Equipment Operator School National Training has over 35,000 graduates and is fully accredited by the DETC . Discover the benefits of becoming a Heavy Equipment Operator. http://www.earthmoverschool.com.
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