Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas Job Description video

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The world runs on oil and gas. Some of the people who help access these vital natural resources are the rotary drill operators. They have the unique expertise to reach the vast fields of oil and gas hidden far underground, whether beneath a sun-baked desert…or a stormy sea. Guided by scientists' field maps, the drillers install a derrick at the site to support the drilling equipment and to stabilize the drill rig. This can be a lengthy construction project. Then they start to bore into the ground, cutting through layers of rock. The drillers collect rock samples to be analyzed for the presence of oil or gas. Drillers need to carefully monitor their progress and equipment. They keep precise written records, making equipment adjustments and repairs as needed. This is an industry in which workers are expected to put in lots of overtime. Often assigned to remote drilling sites, they may work 10 to 20 days at a stretch before getting time off. Drillers usually start as helpers and learn skills on the job, advancing through positions of increased proficiency and higher pay over several years. Rotary drill operators usually have the most responsibility for the drilling operation…so they earn the highest wages. While jobs in this field are becoming scarcer in the U.S., experienced drillers are often hired by American or foreign companies to work overseas. This work can pay very well, and give you the chance to see some of the world.

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