What Machines Are Used in Construction?

excavator truck parked in a field

If you stumble upon a construction site, one of the first things you’ll notice is all the heavy equipment. While these machines are crucial for excavation and other work, they can also be dangerous. To be best prepared for a construction job, or even a visit to the jobsite, you should know about some of these machines and the risks associated with them. Below are the top 3 pieces of heavy equipment you will sees on a construction site.


Excavators are one of the most recognizable pieces of equipment in the construction injury and consist of a pivoting cab and a long bucket arm. They are primarily used for excavation, but can be utilized for heavy lifting, demolition, river dredging, and even tree cutting. The most common hazards associated with excavators are:

  • Falling debris or buckets
  • Trenching accidents and cave-ins
  • Machine rollovers
  • Contact with power lines
  • Operator errors
  • Maintenance errors

Backhoes or Backhoe Loaders

The body of a backhoe is similar to a farm tractor and includes an adjustable shovel or hoe in the back and a small bucket for digging in the front. Backhoes are used on smaller job sites or for jobs that require more versatility. They can move dirt, backfill excavations, and dig holes and trenches – they can also help load and lift materials and place pipes in trenches. Backhoes are a common sight on urban construction sites and can even be driven to the job on public streets! Injuries can be caused by backhoes in the following situations:

  • Overturns on uphill and downhill slopes
  • Collisions with hidden objects (like a ditch, stump or hole)
  • Poor machine maintenance
  • Improper use of bucket
  • Unsecured loads
  • Unstable soil


Bulldozers are extremely heavy and strong. They are made of a wide, flat blade and two hydraulic pistons that help them move dirt along, and level, open tracts of land. Due to their enormous size, bulldozers can crush large boulders and remove soil with outstanding efficiency and reliability.

Almost every bulldozer accident is caused by a failure to follow safety protocol. Although they are less likely to flip or overturn, they can crush people almost instantly if:

  • Bulldozers are not properly parked
  • Operators are not properly secured

Heavy Equipment Accidents

Because of their sheer size and weight, the machines found on construction sites can cause severe accidents and injuries. If you get hurt on a construction site, your injury should be covered under workers’ compensation.

If you lose a loved one to a construction site accident, you may also be able to file a wrongful death claim. In the construction industry, accidents are usually caused by someone else’s negligence. In these cases, your loss may exceed workers’ comp coverage, and someone will have to accept responsibility.

In the event that you face challenges with workers’ comp claims or need to hold someone accountable for a particularly devastating injury or loss, our attorneys at Ufkes & Bright are here to help.

Call us at (714) 909-2609 today for a free consultation

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