How to pass the heavy equipment operator practical training test could the first question that pops up in your mind when it is your turn to take it.
If you were able to pass the written exam, then there’s a second hurdle you have to face - the practical exam. Pass this exam and you could be guaranteed of receiving your operator certificate.
The practical test is one of the components of the course. It is the important part of the certification process.
This is where you demonstrate your hands-on and driving ability. You have to prove that you have acquired the required knowledge and skill in operating the heavy equipment you are getting the training on. It is meant to gauge your acquired ability.
Passing isn’t easy – many in the batch of trainees fail the practical test. You tend to be nervous, but remember this; the test is merely a mean of showing everything that you’ve learned from the course. It is just doing the hands-on training except there’s an examiner that oversees your performance.
If you are concerned, here are the tips in passing that you can do to get you ready:
Passing the Practical Training Test the First Time
- The three main things you have to concentrate on are the safety of the operation, maintenance of the equipment, and basic operational controls. If you can show your competency on those three items, passing the test will be much simpler. You will learn the ins and outs of those three items during the classroom training and during the hands-on training. So make sure you’re paying attention to those three aspects.
- Practice the driving and maneuverings as often as you can. Practice makes perfect as they say. This is true because practicing your driving skill and maneuvers make you feel more comfortable handling the equipment making the practical test as easy as 1-2 and 3.
- Eat and sleep well before the test day. Of course, eating a good meal will give you an extra boost to your body; having a good meal will prevent you from getting stress and increase your attention to what you’re doing. Likewise, by getting a good sleep, you’re mind is more relaxed; you can maintain focus on the operation and instruction being given by the trainer.
- Know the test route and training field. On the day of the exam, candidates will be given a course map and direction on completing the heavy equipment training practical test. Getting to know the direction, route and the training field where you will be operating will make you familiarized with the site environment.
- Know the weather and surface condition. You will never know accurately the condition of the weather on the test day; it could be dry and hot, wet and raining or in high winds or snow; the weather is an ally or a real problem. The weather can affect the surface condition of the training site, thus it can have an influence on your actual operation. The weather is an important factor in heavy equipment operation safety.
- Get to know the heavy equipment you will be doing the practical testing on. You might have driven it before, you may be familiar with its controls, and how it feels operating it. You’ve got all the knowledge about the equipment during the training course. So don’t worry during the testing. You’ve already got what it takes to be its competent operator.
- Prior training helps you get good performance. You should always absorb as much knowledge as possible during the classroom and practical training of the course. You will need to be prepared for it no matter how easy you think it is. Soak up as much information as you need and apply them during the practical test.
- Always get motivated even if you commit a mistake. Making a mistake doesn’t mean you are no longer qualified to pass the test. This just means you doing correction of your skill. Take a deep breath, compose yourself, and focus on that what you’re doing. Show your instructor that though you’ve committed a mistake, you’re able to rectify it. Don’t let a minor mistake escalate to a bigger one. The examiner will perceive your skill when you show your discipline at the moment you faced a difficulty. It will help you pass the exam.
- Don’t panic and get nervous. If you get panic and nervous, you won’t be able to think logically. You won’t be able to perform the instructions you will be given. In short, you are bound to fail the test if you panic and don’t know what you’re doing. I know you know this already. But this tip is important. Remember this item.
Becoming a Heavy Equipment Operator
Special skills are needed to operate a wide variety of heavy equipment. You will work mostly on a construction site or in other civil work projects. You will operate backhoes, bulldozers, excavators to excavate the site. Though some of you may find jobs in the mine and quarry sites and in the agricultural farm.
If you’re building your skills to penetrate the industry, there’s no better way to learn the trade than through enrolling in a technical school. This is the formal way of taking the heavy equipment training.
The training is composed of two parts: the classroom instruction and in-field operation. You will spend most of the time in the field doing the practical training, and lesser time in the classroom.
The written exam and the practical test are being administered in order certify you to ensure you have the right combination of theoretical skill and hands-on ability.
If you are really decided to become a heavy equipment operator, then, there are things you need to remember. The training does take time to complete; it takes around 8 to 12 weeks depending on the course you have chosen. The cost may be somewhere in the neighborhood of $5,000 to $12,000.
The investment to put is huge and the amount of time to spend is serious. But if you allocate your resources, you will be guaranteed a good payday and long-term employment as this skill is highly in demand right now and in the next coming years.
To Conclude This
Are you ready taking your heavy equipment training test? Don’t get left behind, prepare for the big day. The top pieces of advice above will surely make you feel confident in passing the exam.
70% to 80% of the course is the practical training; therefore, you won’t be having a hard time passing the test. The hands-on operation you’ve done in the field is almost the same with the practical test.
Remember what you’ve learned and keep in mind the hot tips above, you will be prepared and ready.