Construction equipment operators use machinery to move construction materials, earth, and other heavy materials at construction sites and mines.
They operate equipment that clears and grades land to prepare it for construction of roads, buildings, and bridges.
They use machines to dig trenches to lay or repair sewer and other pipelines and hoist heavy construction materials. They may even work offshore constructing oil rigs.
Construction equipment operators also operate machinery that spreads asphalt and concrete on roads and other structures. Common responsibilities include:
- Maintaining a working knowledge of construction machinery and techniques
- Operating machinery for a determined length of time
- Following the instructions of a construction foreman
- Cleaning and maintaining work materials and apparatus
Most construction equipment operators are trained and certified on the job but there are outside certification programs available at a number of different institutions.
Hourly wages for construction equipment operators are high but work is erratic and can be seasonal in some parts of the country.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor