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Crane Operator Salary

A sizeable majority of Crane Operators in the United States are men. In this role, average pay is around $22.76 per hour. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career duration. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Crane Operators. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, approximately one in four are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by a strong majority and dental insurance is reported by slightly more than half. This overview is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$33,918 - $124,327
(Median)
$34K
$60K
$120K
MEDIAN: $59,621
10%
50%
90%

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$14.90 - $35.23
(Median)
$15
$23
$35
MEDIAN: $22.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$33,918 - $124,327  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,122  
Profit Sharing
$198.66 - $4,530  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,028 - $93,700  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 96
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$14.90 - $35.23  
   
Overtime
$20.34 - $49.04  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,122  
   
Profit Sharing
$198.66 - $4,530  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,028 - $93,700  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 650

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Job Description for Crane Operator

A crane operator uses a crane to lift and move equipment and/or materials around a job site. In addition to the responsibilities associated with the operation of the crane, they must also perform inspections of the equipment before and after its use to ensure it is in working order. These operators must know and follow safety procedures on using the crane and working on job sites. In some positions, being able to plan operational lifts is an important part of the job.

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Crane Operator Tasks

  • Diagnose problems and maintain a variety bulk handling equipment.
  • Work with crews to load and unload heavy items.
  • Operate a crane to move heavy equipment and cargo.
  • Perform work area housekeeping functions and help with equipment maintenance.

Common Career Paths for Crane Operator


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Many Crane Operators move into a Mobile Crane Operator role, which does not lead to a big boost in pay. Mobile Crane Operators on average bring in a similar salary to Crane Operators.

Crane Operator Job Listings

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Survey takers who work as Crane Operators usually report a few specific skills. Machine Operation and crane operator are considered valuable skills and can increase employee pay by 10 percent and 9 percent, respectively.

Pay by Experience Level for Crane Operator

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Crane Operators with a lot of experience do not necessarily enjoy more money. Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $46K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $52K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $56K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $60K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Experience Affects Crane Operator Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 15%

Experienced
up arrow 8%

National Average
$52,000

Mid-Career
up arrow 2%

Entry-Level
up arrow 12%

Skills That Affect Crane Operator Salaries

Machine Operation
up arrow 10%

crane operator
up arrow 9%

National Average
$52,000

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 116 votes.

Gender

Female
2 %
Male
98 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
27%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
23%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 75% dental benefits Dental: 55%
vision benefits Vision: 40% employee benefits None: 24%