It’s probably crossed your mind already, just what is it like to be a crane operator? If there is one job that everyone sees being done that makes us think, it is the crane operator. But what is the job actually like for those that take on the training and go out and do it?
The first task of the day, no matter what kind of crane is being operated, is safety. Whether a mobile crane or a tower crane, giving things a check over is important. For mobile cranes, this means a once over before setting off to site, for a tower crane, operators check the crane at each stage as the climb to the cab. Responsibility, as shown by the safety checks, is a big part of being a crane operator, and that is why it can be so appealing. You are responsible for your crane, yourself and the loads you move.
For mobile cranes, finding today’s site is the next challenge, moving large cranes around is itself a skill, but with each new site is a new work environment, and that ever-changing surroundings means that life for a crane operator is never routine, never dull.
Operating the crane itself is of course the main part of the day, and is an exercise in precision and teamwork. Crane operators take responsibility, but they also need a team to guide them as loads are moved. Hand signals, radios, even flags, all tools that allow the team to work seamlessly and safely to get the job done. Many people think a crane operator’s day is a lonely one, but the truth is that it takes a team to make it work. Operators may be alone in a cab, but they are never on their own on a site.
It can be long days, sometimes 12 hours on big projects, but that combination of responsibility, skill and teamwork make crane operators something unique. It also makes the work day for crane operators unique as well, which is why we see those cranes and wonder what it would be like. If you like the idea of something different every day, working as a team and taking on responsibility for yourself and others, it’s time to think about that crane operators training for yourself.