A heavy equipment operator can be many things, and their workday is very different, depending…
Graders are similar to other heavy equipment in that there are procedures that operators go through when on the job. For example, there are pre-startup, startup and shutdown procedures that need to be followed. There is one thing for sure – you cannot just jump in and start working.
When it comes to grader training, these procedures must be learned before you jump into the driver’s seat. For experienced operators, it takes no more than a couple of minutes to go through each of the procedures. What is involved with each procedure? Let’s have a look (and this is not a comprehensive list – just an example).
Pre-Startup procedure for a motor grader
- fluid levels are correct
- evidence of damage
- evidence of structural weaknesses
- evidence of stress on welds
- attachments are fitted correctly
- tires are inflated and not damaged
Startup procedure for a motor grader
- engine is running smoothly
- hazard systems are operational
- controls function smoothly
Shutdown procedure for a motor grader
- grader is parked in suitable location
- motion locks and brakes are applied
- visual inspection for defective equipment
- grader secured against unauthorized operation
As I mentioned, this is by no means a comprehensive list. In fact, most of what is on that list is just plain common sense. If done properly, minor problems can be identified and fixed before they become major issues causing lengthy down times.
Learning to operate a grader involves more than just learning the controls. These procedures need to be learned and followed along with safety issues, job planning and soil identification. However, by gaining an understanding of these areas you will become the complete operator, someone who looks after their equipment and gets the job done efficiently. There is more to grader training than just learning the controls.