Logging Machinery Operators


What they do?

The following is a summary of main duties for some occupations in this unit group:

A. Cable yarding system operators operate machines to transport trees from logging areas to landing or log loading sites in mountainous terrain in western Canada.

B. Mechanical harvester and forwarder operators assess site and terrain and drive heavy equipment to perform a combination of felling, slashing, bucking, bunching and forwarding operations at logging areas.

C. Mechanical tree processor and loader operators operate a variety of machines which perform a combination of slashing, bucking, chipping, sorting and loading logs or trees at landing sites.

Where they find work?

1. Forestry and logging - 68.0%
2. Wood product manufacturing - 18.0%

What education do I need?

1. To be a logging machinery operator, you usually need some high school education.

2. You receive on-the-job training, which varies from three to sixteen months, depending on the type of woodland operation and the machinery you'll be operating.

3. To be a logging machine operator, you may need heavy equipment operations certification, air brake certification, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) certification, first aid certification, and company certification for mobile logging machinery operation.

4. To be a mechanical harvester or forwarder operator, you may need chain saw and skidder operator experience.

5. To be a feller buncher or cable yard operator, you usually need from three to five years' logging experience.

6. Most recent entrants have a trade/vocational certificate, and almost 3 in 10 have a Community College diploma.

High School Subject that will help:

  1. Physical Education
  2. First Aid
  3. Machine Shop

What can you expect to make:

The average hourly wages for Logging Machinery Operators is $19.51/HR, which is close to the average for occupations in the primary industry sector and are close to the average for all technical, professional, and skilled occupations. These wages grew at an average rate from 2002 to 2004.

Average Wage

Logging Machinery Operators wages

Expected Wage by Age

Logging Machinery Operators Wage By Age


14% of Logging Machinery Operators are unemployed. This rate is close to the average for technical, professional, and skilled occupations.


Logging Machinery Operators Unemployment

Trends in Unemployment

Logging Machinery Operators Trends in Unemployment

Current Job Outlook:

The job outlook for Logging Machinery Operators is considered Average because:

1. Employment grew at an average rate.

2. Hourly wages ($19.51) are close to the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average.

3. The unemployment rate (14%) is above the 2004 average (7%).

Future Job Prospects:

Your job outlook will continue to be Average because:

1. The employment growth rate will likely be below average.

2. Although the retirement rate will likely be average, the number of retiring workers should contribute to job openings.

3. The number of job seekers will likely match the number of job openings.

Highest Concetration:

The highest concentrations (per 10,000 people) of are found in Alberta and Prince Edward Island while the lowest concentrations are in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

Unionization Rate:

The unionization rate (37%) is close to the average (32%) for all occupations.

Useful Experience:

1. Physical/outdoor work

2. Machinery

3. Safety procedures

Part Time Workers

Logging Machinery Operators Part Time Workers

Part time workers:

2% of Logging Machinery Operators are employed only on a part-time basis. There were 13,600 workers employed in these occupations in 2004, an increase of 3% since 1997.

Age Demographics

Logging Machinery Operators Age Demographics

Age Demographics:

The retirement rate to 2009 will likely be average reflecting the age/retirement structure of the occupation.

Self Employed

Logging Machinery Operators Self Employed

Self Employed:

Roughly 16% of Logging Machinery Operators are self-employed. This is considered Average for the industry as a whole.

Men vs Women

Logging Machinery Operators Men vs Women

Men vs Women:

1% of the individuals employed as Logging Machinery Operators are women. Compared to other industries, this is Below average .