Earth Drillers, Except Oil and Gas

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Also known as:  Blast Hole Driller, Churn Drill Operator, Churn Driller, Earth Auger Operator, Earth Boring Machine Operator, Hard Rock Drill Operator, Rock Drill Operator

ABOUT EARTH DRILLER CAREERS

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT Expand
Buried underground are many minerals and other valuable deposits. Getting to them often requires the expertise of earth drillers. Mining companies use earth drillers for exploration. They dig up core samples that are then analyzed by geologists and other experts. Drillers are also employed to tap su ...
b-surface water and salt deposits, to do soil testing, or to dig for construction projects.

The work can be very demanding physically. Operating a drill means you're often inside a noisy, vibrating piece of machinery for long hours at a stretch. And you'll be expected to be on the job in all weather conditions.

While anytime you work with heavy equipment there is always an element of danger, earth drillers have an added risk. They are sometimes called upon to handle explosives. Some drillers go underground, operating earth-boring machines that dig tunnels.

You can learn to operate the machines and their various drills in a technical school, or through on-the-job training. You'll also need to know how to maintain the equipment, as well as have a working knowledge of the appropriate drills to use for specific jobs. This is a job for people who have good eye-hand coordination skills and who like the challenge of digging out the secrets hidden underground.
SNAPSHOT Expand
Operate a variety of drills such as rotary, churn, and pneumatic to tap sub-surface water and salt deposits, to remove core samples during mineral exploration or soil testing, and to facilitate the use of explosives in mining or construction. May use explosives. Includes horizontal and earth boring machine operators.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
HIGH
Level of responsibilities
LOW
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
LOW
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Competition for this position
HIGH
Communication with others
LOW
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
LOW
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
MED
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
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DAILY TASKS Expand
Retrieve lost equipment from bore holes, using retrieval tools and equipment.
Drill or bore holes in rock for blasting, grouting, anchoring, or building foundations.
Operate controls to stabilize machines and to position and align drills.
Perform routine maintenance and upgrade work on machines and equipment, such as replacing parts, building up drill bits, and lubricating machinery.
Select the appropriate drill for the job, using knowledge of rock or soil conditions.
Record drilling progress and geological data.
Select and attach drill bits and drill rods, adding more rods as hole depths increase, and changing drill bits as needed.
Start, stop, and control drilling speed of machines and insertion of casings into holes.
Assemble and position machines, augers, casing pipes, and other equipment, using hand and power tools.
Verify depths and alignments of boring positions.
Drive trucks, tractors, or truck-mounted drills to and from work sites.
MAIN ACTIVITIES Expand
Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
Controlling Machines and Processes Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Thinking Creatively Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Training and Teaching Others Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE Expand
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Public Safety and Security Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Administration and Management Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Mathematics Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Building and Construction Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
Production and Processing Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
KEY ABILITIES Expand
Control Precision The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
Multilimb Coordination The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
Manual Dexterity The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Arm-Hand Steadiness The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Reaction Time The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
Depth Perception The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
Rate Control The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
Response Orientation The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
TOP SKILLS Expand
Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Operation and Control Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Equipment Maintenance Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
Quality Control Analysis Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Repairing Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
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