Excavators are versatile pieces of equipment. With their range of attachments, they can do a variety of earthmoving jobs such as trenching and landscaping, forestry, removing debris, and demolitions, among many others. If you are planning an excavation project in Brisbane, you’ve probably considered hiring one.
Now the question is, what are the requirements for hiring and operating an excavator? It’s common sense that you don’t just wake up, pick an excavator for hire and start working. It does not work like that. Heavy machine use such as excavator usage is regulated for the safety of the users and appropriate use.
In this article, we are going to look at the main requirements to operate excavators and whether a licence is important. If a licence is needed, when and how do you go about it? Read more below.
Do You Need an Excavator Licence?
The answer to this question is not perfectly clear. But this was not the case some years back. You needed an earthmoving or particular crane (EPC) certificate to operate an excavator. Today, you don’t need to hold a licence to operate an excavator for DIY private or non-commercial property projects. You also don’t need any certification to prove your skills – but legally, you need to be able to demonstrate your competency in operating an excavator, whether it’s as simple as logbook records of training or experience being trained under a senior excavator operator.
Therefore, if you are a trained excavator operator and have an excavation project, you will be able to look for a machine supplier and hire the equipment. Whether you need a mini excavator like Kubota U17-3 Mini or a larger one like Kubota Excavator U35-4 for private use, Australian law does not need you to hold a certificate.
However, you will need to prove operator competency by way of certification if you are renting an excavator for commercial use. You will need a record to prove you have adequate skills to operate an excavator. But how do you prove your operator’s competency?
How to Prove Operator’s Competency
If you intend to hire an excavator for commercial use, there are so many ways you can prove your competence. As mentioned earlier, it should be in the way of a certificate. First, if you ever had a licence previously that proves you are a trained and experienced operator, you automatically qualify to operate these machines. If you have records of operating heavy machines in any part of Australia, it’s also enough proof of competency.
But you don’t have to be formally trained to prove you have adequate skills to operate an excavator. This is because the government also recognizes informal training. If you were trained on the job by an experienced operator, and this can be verified using logbooks or your previous employer records, it is enough proof of competency.
Did you know that records of in-house training are also accepted as proof of competency? That’s true. It’s also essential to note that machine suppliers can assess your skills on site. They are also supposed to give you a brief on the safe use of the machine. This is general practice to ensure the safety of the user and that of the machine.
Does Experience Matter?
This is a big concern for most people renting excavators for the first time. The answer is that you are not required to prove experience but rather be competent. It does not really matter to the machine supplier whether you went trained a fortnight ago or decades ago.
What they care about is your ability to use the machine properly and safely. That’s what matters the most. It’s rare to find anyone asking you for how long you have been operating an excavator.
When Do You Need Excavator Licence?
It is important to note that the only time you get exempted from excavator licensing is when doing typical excavation jobs. These are simple jobs such as trenching to change water line or sewer line, or landscaping, among other common tasks. But when an excavation is categorized as a high-risk operation, you will need a special licence.
In Australia, there are about 29 categories of excavation-related works classified as high-risk operations. Such operations include demolition and removal of asbestos. If you are planning to use an excavator for such kinds of operation, you require a high-risk work licence.
The high-risk work licence is offered by registered training organizations (RTOs), which are also responsible for training and assessments. It lasts for five years, after which you are required to renew it.
In conclusion, if you want to rent an excavator in Brisbane areas such as East Brisbane for typical jobs, you don’t need a licence. You just need to prove you have adequate skills, and there are so many ways to do this. If you have adequate skills, go ahead and rent an excavator, and the Allwell Hire will include a trailer for transporting your excavator.
Interested in excavator hire? Take a look at our post on why you should rent an excavator.