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Career profile: Crane Driver

There are many benefits to a career in construction – you can start earning money straight away, you can build a lifelong career, and you can travel. One thing’s for sure, you certainly won’t get bored!

Here we take a look at the third in a series of job profiles linked to the construction industry

What are the entry requirements?
You’ll usually need:
• Experience of working on a construction site or using heavy plant machinery like excavators
• A valid Construction Plant Competence Scheme (CPCS) card
• A college qualification in plant operations – this can be done through on-the-job training
• A category C1 or C LGV licence if driving mobile cranes on public roads
You could get into this job through an apprenticeship if you also get the plant operations college qualification and the CPCS card.

What skills do I need?
• The ability to pay close attention to detail
• Communication skills
• The ability to work alone for long periods
• Teamworking skills
• The ability to work flexibly

What will I be doing?
You’ll work on mobile, overhead or tower cranes.
• Setting up cranes and carrying out safety checks
• Shifting loads around the site
• Monitoring sensors that measure wind speed, crane stability and load weights
• Carrying out minor repairs
• Reporting any problems to the crane supervisor
• Keeping records of the materials you’ve moved

How much will I earn?
A trainee will earn £15,000-£20,000. More experienced operatives can command £20,000-£30,000, and highly experienced crane drivers can expect £36,000+.
What about my working hours, patterns and environment?
You’ll usually work 35-40 hours a week but overtime may be required.

Career progression?
With experience and a Level 3 or 4 NVQ Diploma in Lifting Operations, you could become a crane supervisor, directing operations. After further training you may be able to work as a site manager.

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