The Advantages of an Empty Cab

When the safety of your operators is a concern, Cat® Command for Cat dozers keeps your people out of harm’s way. It also lets you work efficiently in conditions that would stump other contractors and better leverage the skills of young and old operators alike.

Estimated read time: 5 minutes

Bulldozers are the uncontested heavyweights of the equipment world. But in some situations, you may choose not to use them due to operator risk. That’s where Cat Command for dozers comes in. It keeps your people out of harm’s way in potentially dangerous conditions such as:

  • Leach pads

  • Slurry ponds

  • Unstable ground 

  • Fire breaks

  • Highwalls

  • Areas known for rock falls

  • Overburden/reclamation work 

  • Large stockpile management

  • Cleanup after natural disasters

  • Where hazardous fumes or materials are present

  • Around water where sinkholes or hidden depressions lurk

There’s work to be done and money to be made on jobsites like these. Cat Command for Cat® dozers enables you to run a bulldozer entirely by remote control with nobody in the cab.


While the technology behind Cat Command is sophisticated, the operation is simple. Your operator, standing or sitting at a safe distance, controls the speed, direction and revolutions per minute (RPM) of the dozer and work the blade is doing. When the hazard is gone, you can switch off the remote control, hop in the cab and immediately start dozing as usual.

Cat Command offers two ways to operate the dozer remotely:  

  • The first is an over-the-shoulder Cat Console. The operator wears the device in the field while standing at a safe distance, up to 437 yards (400 meters) away. The console includes two joysticks and all the controls and monitor information the operator needs to run the dozer by line of sight. It’s powered by a lithium-ion battery pack with long run times and short charge times. 

  • The second way is to use the Cat Command operator station, which is essentially an indoor simulator tricked out exactly like the cab of the dozer. When you move the joysticks or operate the controls, the dozer in the field receives that signal and responds instantly and precisely. The operator sees everything the dozer is doing in real time on a screen that shows visuals from the left and right cutting edges, top/center of the blade and a rear view that includes the ripper. And the operator station can be set up anywhere — in the job trailer, the office or halfway around the world.

On both the line-of-sight console and indoor operator station, the info you need to run the machine safely and productively is displayed on a monitor: engine RPM, hydraulic fluid temps and fuel and diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) levels. You are completely in control of all aspects of the dozer.


Cat Command for dozers is factory installed and integrated into all the dozer’s functions to ensure smooth, precise control with minimal latency. The console unlocks with an electronic access card. And you can transfer control to another dozer by simply changing out a radio frequency identification (RFID) chip. For added security only one operator at a time can control the dozer.

See Cat Command in action on the D8T in this video:


Estimated watch time: 3 minutes


Now that we’ve talked about the safety benefits of using Cat Command for dozers, let’s look at some additional advantages. 

  • Taking a break. Sitting in the cab of any machine for 12 or 14 hours is difficult. Leg cramps, sore seats and muscle fatigue make operators less sharp. And having to run side-slope on a berm or hill, bracing your body against the pull of gravity, is like doing planks for hours on end. With the console, the operator can get out of the cab, switch to remote control and stand outside in the fresh air, stretch the legs, shake off the fatigue and later return to the cab refreshed and more alert while still moving material and pushing the pile the whole time. 

  • Indoor convenience. Placed inside a comfortable, climate-controlled jobsite trailer or building, the operator station makes it possible for your people to work long hours with minimal disruption and without the distractions of cold, heat or drizzly weather. Indoor operation eliminates all these obstacles. And with a mini-fridge and microwave just steps away, lunch breaks become shorter and less disruptive to the schedule. 

  • Older operators. A lot of veteran operators have trouble climbing in and out of a cab or trudging through soft dirt and rough terrain multiple times a day. They’d love to work but can’t handle the physical demands. With the operator station, access to full-function dozing is no harder than walking into the office. 

  • Younger operators. Many contractors have discovered the benefit of putting novices on simulators before they’re sent to work in the field. The operator station, even though it controls a live dozer, can still be a great teaching tool for new operators, especially when there’s a more experienced operator standing over or nearby giving them pointers, encouragement and detailed, live-action feedback.

An idle dozer makes no money. But a dozer armed with Cat Command will log more hours, open up more jobs for bidding, enable older or differently abled operators to continue to work for you and most of all: keep your people safe. 

Read more about Cat Command, or contact your dealer for more information.


Cat Command remote control enables dozing in hazardous situations without endangering operators.

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