After each completion of a heavy equipment operator course, you will receive an operator certificate or a license that will serve as evidence that you’ve completed such training and you’re certified operating heavy equipment.
That certificate is necessary if you’re applying for a job. The hiring manager will ask for it from you. Obviously, it is an employment requirement.
Likewise, if you’re applying for an apprenticeship program, the union or the prospective employer will also require it to be submitted to them.
You will also need that certificate if you are seeking job promotion. The company may ask for it.
It is your proof of education and competency.
Having that piece of document in your possession is important.
But What if the Certificate or License is Lost?
There could an instance that you lost or misplaced your heavy equipment operator certificate for whatever reason.
Where will you get a replacement then?
Since in the US there’s no central registration of heavy equipment operators, you can always get a replacement from the technical school or college where you took the training course from.
They usually maintain a database of their students. You can write to them a formal request for a reprint of the document.
If the reprint is not possible, ask if they can issue you some sort of certification attesting that you were a previous student by them.
If they agree, make sure that the certificate bears your complete name, the duration of the training course, the certification program you completed, the name of the instructor who facilitated the training, and other details that may be necessary.
I Was Not Able to Get a Replacement, What Will I Do Then?
If you are applying for a job, you have to be honest with the employer. Tell them you’ve lost your operator certificate.
You can explain to them that you’ve reached a level of experience relevant to the job you are applying for and you’ve just lost your operator license as verification of your ability.
When you do this, make sure you support your reason. Show them other credentials that will prove that you’re an experienced heavy equipment operator. You can present employment certificate from past jobs, other training certificates, or other documents confirming your competency and skill in operating heavy equipment.
The employer will understand you if you become honest in your answer. They might send you for a retraining course and they may even shoulder the cost.
NCCCO Has Launched an Online Verification for Crane Operators
If you will be working with cranes, then you need to have CCO certification. It is a strict requirement for crane operators.
The NCCCO will issue a photographic ID card upon successful certification with its own unique number and expiration date.
These details together with the other information such as the type of equipment the holder is certified are to be uploaded to the system called “Verify CCO Online.’
What benefits can it bring you then by this new online system if you lost your operator card?
The system is particularly helpful if the employer wants to check your credentials online. They just have to go to www.verifycco.org to verify your record. The system will show the list of your certifications and it corresponding dates of expiration.
This system is beneficial for a hiring manager as well. Since a copy of the CCO operator card is not a sufficient evidence of the certification, the hiring manager can use this system to check the applicant’s credentials. The NCCCO has also given a stern warning that printout from the system is not valid proof of the individual’s certification and this printout does not replace the official CCO photographic operator card. You can read full details here.
Specific Laws and Regulations Regarding License Replacement
If part of your duties and responsibilities is working with a crane as an operator and you are working in the state of New Jersey, you need to have a specific license. You need to submit an application to the state’s Department of Labor and Workplace Development. You see the full details of the application here.
The state’s N.J.S.A. 45:26-1 et seq. for crane operators has also specified the replacement of crane operator license.
An operator who has lost or has stolen crane operator license must notify the Department in formal writing. The formal request for replacement must be notarized and should include the important details such as the holder’s full name, complete address and correct DOB, unique ID number.
The request letter should include reasons about how and when the crane operator license was lost or stolen, defaced or mutilated. The letter should explain the whole situation why the license was lost or damaged.
If the license is defaced or mutilated, submit the damaged license together with the formal letter.
The payment for application of replacement must also be included in the formal letter.
To Conclude This
Do you know the skills the employer wants from you? I bet you already knew that. You may already know your duties and responsibilities. You have had previous experience in the past. But experience is not enough to get hired; you also need credentials – your certification.
Having a heavy equipment certification under your belt it the top priority to get an employment in construction sites and other civil work projects.
Whether you want to be a backhoe operator, a crane operator, drive commercial trucks, or operate an excavator, forklifts, scrapers and other types of heavy equipment, having the certification benefits you and your company. There’s no reason why you should not have this.
But there could a time, especially when you’ve taken the training course a long time ago, and you’ve lost your heavy equipment operator certificate for whatever unfortunate reason.
It could be a big headache! How can then prove your credential without this?
We’ve mentioned above the ways to convince your employer into hiring you if you don’t have your certificate with you.
We hope by writing this article has helped you get hired as an operator.
Good luck with your career!