Pile Driver Operator Job Description

Pile Driver Operators control large machines that hammer piles into the ground. Piles are long heavy pieces of steel or wood that support building foundations, bridges, and piers.

Primary Objectives:

  • The Pile Driver Operators objective is to drive the setting for a building foundation, bridge or pier into the ground.

  • The Pile Driver Operator knows that he controls the machine from the cab and by using pedals and levers.

  • The Pile Driver Operator knows that he must be able to judge spaces correctly and handle many controls at the same time.

The Pile Driver Operator controls large machines that hammer piles into the ground. A pile is long and heavy usually made from a piece of steel or wood. The pile is used to support building foundations, bridges and piers. The pile driver is usually mounted on skids, cranes or barges. The Pile Driver Operator usually sets in a cab that has pedals and levers. The Pile Driver Operator must be capable of operating the levers and pedals while judging spaces correctly and handling many controls at the same time. Most Pile Driver Operators are trained on the equipment while working on a construction job. Normally, most operators start out by working on smaller machines. When they show that they have the skill then the Pile Driver Operator is graduated to larger equipment. Many companies prefer to know that their operators have completed an apprenticeship program.

The apprenticeship program for a Pile Driver Operator combines at least three years of on-the-job training with at least 144 hours of classroom instruction each year. The training will cover the operation and repair of several kinds of construction equipment. While it is very important for the Pile Driver Operator to know about safety the classroom focuses on industry standards for safety. The apprenticeship programs are administered through a joint effort of the Associated General Contractors of America and the International Union of Operating Engineers. The Pile Driver Operator applicants for the apprenticeship programs must have a high school diploma or its equivalent and be at least eighteen years old.

The Pile Driver Operator must be in top physical condition and have good hand-eye coordination. The Pile Driver Operator knows that he must be capable of working as part of a team. It takes good team work to set up the machines and work the pile driver by a Pile Driver Operator. Interested students might want to check out vocational, technical and trade schools for courses in operating construction equipment, however, they need to verify that the programs have uniform standards that meet the job requirements. Also you need to verify with contractors or trade unions to make sure that any program you are about to take will provide you with good credentials for employment. One way to get the position is by working as a helper for an equipment repair worker. Many farm workers who are familiar with farm equipment might be able to get a job operating simple construction machinery. This is a way to work you up into becoming a Pile Driver Operator. The very way to get a job as a Pile Driver Operator is that of going through an apprenticeship program.

The Pile Driver Operator is considered to be at the top of their craft and often move into supervisory position. The machinery is very expensive but some Pile Driver Operators do buy the equipment and start their own business. Many construction companies do not mind renting the equipment as long as it comes along with an experienced Pile Driver Operator. This helps the construction company to save money on any project. Since the object is to drive piles to set for the foundation then afterwards the machinery and the Pile Driver Operator function is done. That is why most construction companies prefer hiring a private Pile Driver Operator who provides the equipment.

There are fewer than five thousand Pile Driver Operators in the United States today which makes the employment outlook for the trade very good. When the economy permits the increase spending limits to build and replace highways and bridges then the Pile Driver Operators job will greatly increase. The Pile Driver Operator works in a very noisy, dirty, dusty and greasy environment. The Pile Driver Operator is use to moving from job site to job site, which may disrupt family life. The pay is very good and the benefits are usually excellent.

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