Heavy Equipment Operator

Average Salary Per Year: $60,828

Do you have an interest in operating dump trucks, bulldozers or other vehicles classified as heavy machinery? As a heavy equipment operator, you will learn how to safely use this type of equipment to move construction materials, dirt and other heavy objects at construction sites and mines. This occupation operates equipment that clears and grades land to prepare it for construction of roads, buildings and bridges, as well as airport runways, power generation facilities, dams, levees and other structures.

*Average base salary from 2018 NCCER Craft Salary Survey.

Education Options:

Technical School, Community College, Registered Apprenticeship Program, and Industry Training Program


Mechanical aptitude, experience operating mobile equipment (such as farm tractors), good physical condition, good sense of balance, hand-eye-foot coordination. A commercial driver’s license is often needed to haul equipment to various jobsites.


A Career Based on Your Favorite Toys as a Kid

Career Path for Heavy Equipment Operators

View Career Paths for other professions