Take a look at any construction site in the country and chances are that you…
How would you like to spend a day outdoors digging trenches? Sound like fun? Okay, here you go, here’s a shovel, let me know when your done!
What, you’re back already? Doesn’t sound like fun? – oh well, let’s get a bigger bucket then. How about a bucket that holds half a ton of dirt? Now we are talking business – and that’s a small bucket when it comes to excavators. Have you ever wondered what it is like to spend a day inside the cab with an excavator operator. It may sound boring, but in reality, it’s quite fun.
You need to be up early. Excavator operators can be at work at 6am – sometimes earlier. Some, by the way, are just finishing work for the night at 6am. Like all heavy equipment operators, excavator operators start by giving their equipment a walk around inspection. This includes fluid levels in hydraulics, brakes, oil and of course fuel.
Often, the excavator is already at the work site so it is a case of reviewing the current job to see where you need to be on the day. Once the excavator is positioned and the right attachment is secured, the excavator operator does another walk around, this time including safety aspects. If everything is as it should be, it’s time to start the job.
Excavator operators could be working on a different job each day, or on the one job for a whole year – or anything in between. They may work an 8 hour day, or they could be working 10-12 hour days. It all depends on their contract and how quickly the work needs to be completed in.
Digging a trench, is not a case of just digging. It is precision work – the trench is being dug for a reason and generally goes from A to B. The operator needs to ensure the trench is the right depth, the right width, and of course, does meet with the point marked as B.
Once the job has been completed for the day it’s time to pack away your equipment. This includes another walk around check for any damage. Another check of fluid levels and, if the equipment is being left on the job, securing the vehicle to prevent any accidents or theft.
A day in the life of an excavator operator is like most jobs. You start work, you have a general procedure to follow which includes doing the work required, then packing up and going home. Of course, most jobs don’t include wrestling with a 20+ ton piece of heavy equipment. If you would like to wrestle with an excavator then consider heavy equipment training as a new career move. You could be in the excavators hot seat sooner than you may think.