One of the most versatile machines on any work site is the backhoe. If you…
Backhoes are one of the most versatile machines in use when it comes to construction. They excel at digging trenches, particularly in tight areas where an excavator may not fit easily. Backhoes are also good at carrying stuff around a construction site. They help move dirt, often being called on to dig a trench then dump the excess dirt into dump trucks. There is one other job that backhoes (and excavators) do that most people don’t consider.
Digging a trench is a real skill. The trench starts at point A and ends at Point B. It also has to be a certain depth. That’s all in a days work for a backhoe – it’s what they were created for. However, what happens once the workers have finished working in the trench? Naturally, the trench has to be backfilled – anyone got a shovel? I don’t fancy doing it by hand – do you?
Now the backhoe has a scoop at the front that could do a great job of backfilling that trench. There is one problem, however. The workers have laid gas pipeline in a trench that is five feet deep. Do you want dirt and rock falling five feet to crash into sensitive gas (or sewerage) pipelines? Gas, of course, is under pressure so it will soon make its way through any weakness. Guess it is a job for a manual shovel.
Actually, the backhoe is well suited to fulfilling this role as well. It can use its bucket to life dirt and lower it into the trench and, for a machine, gently empty its contents into the trench. Having dirt and rock drop a couple of inches causes far less damage than having it drop 3, 4 or 5 feet. Not only that, experienced operators can manipulate the bucket so that it sprinkles the dirt back into the trench. It’s actually an interesting experience watching a backhoe operator carefully backfilling a trench. Of course, once the pipes have been covered sufficiently, you can use the front scoop to just push the dirt in.
Training to become a backhoe operator gives you the opportunity to learn a diverse range of skills. Backhoes, because of their versatility, get a lot of the interesting jobs on a construction site – and they are reasonably well paid as well.