Large construction equipment can be used to complete a wide variety of work. Moving large heavy metals on building sites, excavating and moving terrain, paving roads, and lifting materials are some of the common jobs this type of equipment is used for. Although each different machinery has a unique purpose, like a bulldozer or a crane, they all have some general rules that each owner and operator must know. Below you will find a list of five of those important factors:
1. Operating Regulations
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has defined rules and regulations to the operation of different type of large equipment. These regulations provide context in who is allowed to operate, what has to be worn when operating, and general operating principles. Their site is the best resource for large equipment regulations.
2. Licensing Rules
Depending upon your state of Operation, operators of heavy machinery may be required to have various licensing. This can be as simple as a standard driver’s license all the way up to a commercial driver’s license for larger equipment. Operators may also have to go through an apprenticeship program and have recorded hours of work in the equipment before they can work alone.
3. Maintenance Schedule
A preventative maintenance (link to last article) schedule is critical to the long term function of the equipment and safety of the user to protect against catastrophic failure. A visual inspection is required before each use. More detailed maintenance can be completed on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis depending upon the type of equipment you use.
4. Laws Related to Transport/Operating Areas
The transport of large equipment to and from jobs can be a tedious and dangerous task. It is important for the owner/operator to know the various traffic laws related to the transport of your vehicle. In addition, your working area is required to have controlled access zones. These zones require barricades, cones, and signs. For transport, special equipment signs and alarm signals are required.
5. Hazards While Using Equipment
Construction zones are dangerous and heavy equipment owners must be conscious of all of the hazards that exist. Falling debris, traffic, hazardous materials, and noise are the most common. Proper protocols and procedures are required to maintain a safe working environment to protect your employees and equipment.
These five items are just a small sample of the many things owners of heavy equipment need to be aware of. I would highly recommend reviewing OSHA’s site for a complete breakdown and guidelines to protect your workers and investment. With so much to take into consideration to operate compliantly, EquipmentMT exists to make the maintenance and maintaining part easy. We specialize in repairing and doing preventative maintenance on large equipment. Use us to ease your mind in this area and get back to planning for your next big job.