thomas. Dozer. June 01st , 2018.
Bulldozers employed for combat engineering roles are often fitted with armor to protect the driver from firearms and debris enabling bulldozers to operate in combat zones. The most widely documented use is the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) militarized Caterpillar D9 for earth moving clearing terrain obstacles opening routes detonating explosive charges. The extensive use of armored bulldozers during the Second Intifada drew controversy and criticism from human rights organizations while military experts saw it as a key factor in reducing IDF casualties.
Some bulldozers have been fitted with armor by non-government civilian operators to prevent bystanders or police from interfering with the work performed by the bulldozer as in the case of strikes or demolition of condemned buildings. This has also been done by civilians with a dispute with the authorities such as Marvin Heemeyer who outfitted his Komatsu D355A bulldozer with homemade composite armor to then demolish government buildings.
With agricultural ripping a farmer breaks up rocky or very hard earth (such as podzol hardpan) which is otherwise unploughable in order to farm it. For example much of the best land in the California wine country consists of old lava flows. The grower shatters the lava with heavy bulldozers so surface crops or trees can be planted. Some bulldozers are equipped with a less common rear attachment referred to as a stumpbuster which is a single spike that protrudes horizontally and can be raised to get it (mostly) out of the way. A stumpbuster is used to split a tree stump. A bulldozer with a stumpbuster is used for landclearing operations and is often equipped with a brush-rake blade.
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