Heavy equipment operators work in the construction and transportation industries with different heavy machines. They are also known as operating engineers. Their job is a high risk, and they need a high level of skill and competency to perform. As a result, the operators are subjected to a lot of requirements starting from education, certification, and, finally, the experience. Here is a breakdown of some of the requirements of a heavy machine operator on site.

OSHA Requirements

Before getting employed as a heavy machine operator, you must meet various requirements by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA requirements are mostly safety-related procedures that protect both the professionals and the general public. They also require that the employers ensure safe working conditions, and the employees adhere to all the safety requirements at their workplace when operating heavy machines like cranes, construction equipment, and trucks. The institution puts a lot of emphasis on training, and there is a good reason for that following how risky it can be to operate a heavy machine. According to OSHA, all the operators must undergo the necessary training. OSHA provides guidance on various standards that aren’t directly covered as well.

Permit Requirements

For you to be on-site, you must process a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This is what will permit you to drive trucks and tractor-trailers used at the site. The applications for this license vary from State to State, but the common ones include no DUI charges for five years, pass substance abuse screening, no felony record, etc. You must also show proof of residence in the State you’re applying for the license. If you’re going to operate a crane, you must also require some special permits.

Apprenticeship Program

Some employees do not have on the job training experience and, therefore, need to go through the apprenticeship program. This requires that the operators spend 3,000 hours on practical experience and 200 in the classroom. The International Union of Operating Engineers provides this kind of training, which can last three to four years, depending on the State. The lessons include equipment maintenance, safety, operational procedures, first aid, etc.

All the licensing, certification and education for heavy machine operators are mandatory. Beyond that, the engineers must be physically capable of handling the machines and have essential mechanical skills to repair breakdowns. They must have proper eye-coordination and be able to work from heights. All these are important to boost your employability and help you adhere to the requirements of safety.

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