A type of heavy machinery, yard goats tow trailers for semi-trucks from one place to another around shipping docks and other parts of trucking company facilities. Yard goat operators are the professionals who drive these machines.
Yard goat operators secure trailers to the machine, ensure that they are safely attached, and then move the trailer as directed. At the destination, the operator disconnects the trailer and then proceeds to the next trailer that needs moving.
Yard goats are not operated on highways or roads, meaning that operators travel back and forth at one location all day long, which can become monotonous by the end of a shift. But for truck drivers who do not want to travel in inclement weather or be away from home, the position might be ideal.
Most employers only hire yard goat operators who have state-issued commercial driver's licenses. To get the license, most states require drivers to pass a written examination and a driving demonstration test.
Education and Training
Yard goat operators often attend training courses at trade schools or community colleges to prepare for their commercial driver's license test. Employers typically provide on-the-job training for new hires as well.
Most employers conduct background checks on applicants and might not hire operators who have a history of traffic accidents, moving violations, driving under the influence charges or felonies. Some companies also perform drug testing on yard goat operators.
As of January 2010, yard goat drivers earned average annual salaries of $26,000, according to Indeed.com.