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Operate a Roller


Unit Standard (SAQA Reg. No 262805)

A roller compactor is a piece of machinery that is used to densify (compact) materials like soil, sand, and clean fill, usually undertaken within a major project. Rollers are primarily used to create compact foundations for a range of construction jobs and projects. While these machines are usually used for road works jobs, they’re also used for agricultural and landfill purposes, as well as to compact concrete, gravel, asphalt and soil into a perfectly flat foundation, allowing the final surface to be laid accurately and precisely.

Successful candidates credited with this unit standard are able to:

  • Demonstrating knowledge of the functions of a roller.
  • Planning for work activities and prepare work area.
  • Starting and shutting down roller.
  • Operating roller.
  • Transporting roller to and from site


  • 5 Days Novice
  • 1 Day Re-certification



Quality Assured Partner: Construction Education And Training Authority



The qualifying learner will be able to operate a roller by understanding the functions of starting, shutting down and operating procedures for the machine. Learners who master the applied competence described in this course will contribute to the development of a professional community of Construction Plant operators. The area of focus of this course will be;

Function And Purpose Of A Roller

  • Compactor Function

Types Of Compactors

  • Dead Weight Rollers
  • Vibrating Rollers
  • Pneumatic Tyred Rollers
  • Wheeled Soil Compactors
  • Smooth Drum Rollers
  • Pad Foot Or Sheep Foot Rollers

Different Types Of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Legislation And Requirements Related To (PPE)

Purpose And Care For (PPE)

Responsibility In The Workplace

  • Employer Responsibilities
  • Employee Responsibilities

Contributing Factors That Result In Accidents

The Occupational Health And Safety Act (Ohs Act)

  • Objectives Of The Act
  • Duties Of The Employer
  • Duty To Inform.
  • Duties Of The Employees
  • Report To Inspector Regarding Certain Incidents

Basic Causes Of Accidents

  • Personal Factors
  • Job Factors

Immediate Causes Of Accidents

  • Unsafe Acts
  • Unsafe Conditions

General Hazards On Site

Health And Environmental Hazards

Eliminating Unsafe Acts

Main Components Of A Roller

  • The Engine
  • Fuel System
  • Hydraulic System
  • Electrical System
  • Master Switch
  • Fuses

The Cooling System

  • Liquid Cooling
  • Air Cooling


  • Tyre Care
  • Causes Of Tyre Wear
  • Tyre Inflation
  • Daily Tyre Care
  • Tyre Checking

Machine Inspections And Procedures

  • The Walk Around Inspection
  • The Pre – Starting Checks
  • The Pre –Operating Checks
  • The Operating Checks
  • The Parking Procedure
  • The Shutdown Procedure

Roller Close Down Procedures

  • Shutting Down And Parking The ROLLER
  • Stopping The Machine
  • Parking
  • Stopping The Engine

Operating Procedures

  • Braking
  • Stopping The Engine

Operating The ROLLER

  • Type Of Material To Be Compacted
  • Compactor Application
  • Operating The Compactor
  • Vibration Control
  • Ballast
  • Compacting Techniques
  • Compaction Considerations

Intermittent Revving

Excessive Idling

Engine Exhaust Smoke Colour

Starting A Cold Engine

Engine Will Not Start

Entry level requirements into this programme?

All new entrants intended under this code (Novice or Re-licensing) shall provide training institution with the required documents.

  • An employer declaration or medical certificate confirming the medical fitness of the learner to undergo the intended training
  • An eye test results issued by a person trained to carry out such tests
  • All new entrants intended under this code will be required to hold at least a Grade 9 (Std 7) school certificate and are at least 18 years of age.
  • Learners shall provide training institution with a valid certified copy of his/her Identity Document
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