Crane and Tower Operators

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About the Job

Operate mechanical boom and cable or tower and cable equipment to lift and move materials, machines, or products in many directions.

It is also Called

  • Yard Crane Operator
  • Wrecking Crane Engine Operator
  • Woodyard Crane Operator
  • Winchman/Crane Operator
  • Whirley Operator
  • Truck-Crane Operator
  • Tractor Crane Operator
  • Tower Technician
  • Tower Loader Operator
  • Tower Crane Operator
show all

What They Do

  • Weigh bundles, using floor scales, and record weights for company records.
  • Direct truck drivers backing vehicles into loading bays and cover, uncover, or secure loads for delivery.
  • Inspect bundle packaging for conformance to regulations or customer requirements and remove and batch packaging tickets.
  • Review daily work or delivery schedules to determine orders, sequences of deliveries, or special loading instructions.
  • Load or unload bundles from trucks or move containers to storage bins, using moving equipment.
  • Clean, lubricate, and maintain mechanisms such as cables, pulleys, or grappling devices, making repairs as necessary.
  • Direct helpers engaged in placing blocking or outrigging under cranes.
  • Inspect cables or grappling devices for wear and install or replace cables, as needed.
  • Inspect and adjust crane mechanisms or lifting accessories to prevent malfunctions or damage.
  • Move levers, depress foot pedals, or turn dials to operate cranes, cherry pickers, electromagnets, or other moving equipment for lifting, moving, or placing loads.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: IA.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Investigative interests, but also prefer Artistic environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Independence and Working Conditions in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • 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.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Preparation Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in California was $63,190 with most people making between $33,230 and $97,170

Outlook

1.32%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 3,800 people in California. It is projected that there will be 4,300 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 50 openings due to growth and about 130 replacement openings for approximately 180 total annual openings.