Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas

Rig derrick equipment and operate pumps to circulate mud through drill hole.

Median Annual Wage: $48,410

Education: Less than high school diploma (69%); High school diploma or equivalent (23%); Post-secondary certificate (5%)

Projected Growth: Faster than average (15% to 21%)

Related Job Titles: Derrick Hand; Derrick Man; Floor Hand; Derrick Operator; Derrick Worker

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas.

More Construction and Extraction Careers

  • Inspect derricks for flaws, and clean and oil derricks to maintain proper working conditions.
  • Control the viscosity and weight of the drilling fluid.
  • Repair pumps, mud tanks, and related equipment.
  • Set and bolt crown blocks to posts at tops of derricks.
  • Listen to mud pumps and check regularly for vibration and other problems to ensure that rig pumps and drilling mud systems are working properly.
  • Start pumps that circulate mud through drill pipes and boreholes to cool drill bits and flush out drill cuttings.
  • Supervise crew members, and provide assistance in training them.
  • Position and align derrick elements, using harnesses and platform climbing devices.
  • Guide lengths of pipe into and out of elevators.
  • Prepare mud reports, and instruct crews about the handling of any chemical additives.
  • Clamp holding fixtures on ends of hoisting cables.
  • Weigh clay, and mix with water and chemicals to make drilling mud, using portable mixers.
  • String cables through pulleys and blocks.
  • Steady pipes during connection to or disconnection from drill or casing strings.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas.

  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Repairing - Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas.

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