Career summary

Details for Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators


Description

Operate or tend machinery equipped with scoops, shovels, or buckets, to excavate and load loose materials.

Tasks

  • Move levers, depress foot pedals, and turn dials to operate power machinery, such as power shovels, stripping shovels, scraper loaders, or backhoes.
  • Set up or inspect equipment prior to operation.
  • Become familiar with digging plans, machine capabilities and limitations, and with efficient and safe digging procedures in a given application.
  • Observe hand signals, grade stakes, or other markings when operating machines so that work can be performed to specifications.
  • Operate machinery to perform activities such as backfilling excavations, vibrating or breaking rock or concrete, or making winter roads.
  • Receive written or oral instructions regarding material movement or excavation.
  • Move materials over short distances, such as around a construction site, factory, or warehouse.
  • Create or maintain inclines or ramps.
  • Lubricate, adjust, or repair machinery and replace parts, such as gears, bearings, or bucket teeth.
  • Handle slides, mud, or pit cleanings or maintenance.
  • Direct workers engaged in placing blocks or outriggers to prevent capsizing of machines when lifting heavy loads.
  • Measure and verify levels of rock or gravel, bases, or other excavated material.
  • Direct ground workers engaged in activities such as moving stakes or markers, or changing positions of towers.
  • Adjust dig face angles for varying overburden depths and set lengths.
  • Drive machines to work sites.
  • Perform manual labor to prepare or finish sites, such as shoveling materials by hand.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Education, training, experience

  • Education - These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

Knowledge

  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

Skills

  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Related careers

  • Crane and Tower Operators
  • Dredge Operators
  • Helpers--Extraction Workers
  • Highway Maintenance Workers
  • Industrial Truck and Tractor Operators
  • Logging Equipment Operators
  • Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators
  • Paving, Surfacing, and Tamping Equipment Operators
  • Pile-Driver Operators
  • Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators