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Skid Steers

Skid Steers – All you need to know

Skid steers are small, upright, rigid-framed vehicles that are common on almost any construction site you visit. They get their name from the simple way they have maneuvered around, with the wheels on each side mechanically locked together. Usually having four wheels, to turn a skid steer, the operator changes the rotation speed of the wheels on one side or the other, causing the faster rotating side to skid around and turn the vehicle.

On sites short of space this maneuverability is incredibly useful, they can turn within their own length so are ideal for even the tightest of spaces. They are also popular because skid steers are so versatile, and for operators, that means that every day is a little different, making it a varied career that people enjoy. While the most common fitment for a skid steer is a front loader bucket. This can be used for loading as well as pushing or transporting material, but for operators, it’s a very different experience than with traditional front loaders. Skid steers are used not just on construction sites, but are found on farms as well, and are used in large numbers for landscape gardening applications too.

The agility itself makes this an interesting vehicle to operate, but the small size also means that the lift arms actually pivot behind the operator, and this itself is something an operator must get accustomed to. Loading buckets are not the only attachment in use though, and skid steers are often seen using augers for drilling, and trenchers and are even used with snow blower attachments for clearing roads of snow in winter. You will see skid steers being used to dig holes from the inside, using ramps to remove material from the excavation. This approach is often used when space is restricted, such as in projects that require excavation underneath a building, or areas where site space is significantly reduced for some reason.

A career as a skid steer operator has a lot of potential, with varied work to keep interest high and good pay and the best way to launch that career is through effective training. As with all heavy machinery, operating skid steers accurately and importantly, safely within a site environment takes skills and understanding.

Our professional training course teaches both in the classroom and on-site, providing a broad view of skid steer operation in a variety of conditions, with a particular focus on maintaining safety for the operator and other workers around the vehicle during its operation. That training when successfully completed opens the door to so many career options, and with the skid steer in so much demand across so many different industries and situations, it really is a career that can build for a lifetime.

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