Crane Operator

A great job in construction

Job Duties and Responsibilities

A crane operator has many duties and responsibilities and those are assembling tower cranes on job sites, Inspecting and calculating crane capacities, perform routine maintenance of cranes, like cleaning and lubricating and last but not least operating cranes to transport and lift heavy equipment and construction materials.

Crane operators work with others to on the job site. They work with other equipment operators and also work closely with ground crew.

Average Wage

A crane operator makes an average wage of $60 000. The average wage changes by province, the provincial average is between $38 000- $ 80 000, in Ontario crane operator’s make between $38 311-$80 337 a year. Crane operators make more in some provinces like Alberta and British Columbia, But less in others like Manitoba and New Brunswick

Education and Training Required

To become a crane operator you need to complete high school and go to college and complete a one to three year apprenticeship program. The apprenticeship will also require on the job training with a certified crane operator and if you complete a crane operator program at a college you can finish your apprenticeship faster

Also in most provinces across Canada(Ontario,Manitoba, Quebec, Nova Scotia) it is mandatory to have mobile/tower crane operator trade certification, but is voluntary in other provinces and territories. An red seal endorsement is also available to crane operators with completion of the inter provincial red seal examination.

Type of Trade

A crane operator is both a compulsory and a voluntary trade as it depends where you live whether you have to be certified or not, but if you are certified it will increase your chances to get employed as it shows your employers that you have the skills for the job

Skills Needed

There are three important skills you need to be a crane operator you need to be unafraid of heights as most crane operators have to work on big cranes high up in the air. You also need to have good mechanical skills as you need to complete basic maintenance of the crane you operate and also you need to have good hand-eye-foot coordination because crane operators need to have complete control over the crane, so they can move the load efficiently and precisely, which requires to have steadily hands and feet

Demand for the Future

There will be bigger demand for this trade in the future. There will be 17 270 crane operators this year and in the next couple of years the employment of crane operators will steadily increase. There will be 17 401 more crane operators just next year.

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Possible Work Hours

The job hours of crane operator can vary, but the standard work week from crane operators is 40 hours per week, which is 8 hours a day and work 5 days a week. there are peak hours, where you may have to work more and this usually depends on the job you are working on

Possible Work Locations & Opportunities for Travel

There are many possible work locations for crane operators and depends on where your job site is, crane operators can work in both cities and urban areas and also in remote areas. Also you might have to work away from home for long periods of time.

As a Crane operator you might have to to travel to different provinces depending on where your new job site is.

Recommended Personal Qualities

To succeed and do well as crane operator you should have these personal qualities. You be cooperative and be able to work with a team and you should also have the will to keep learning more and more every day about new equipment.


Crane operators are employed by construction, mining, railway and also crane rental companies.

Possible Hazards

There are possible hazards for this job,one hazard would be that you have to work at great heights, which can be very dangerous also another hazard is you may have to work in sometimes bad weather conditions, which can be dangerous, but crane operators are trained to work safely.


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What Does a Heavy Equipment Operator Do? (n.d.). Retrieved October 13, 2016, from

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