Maritime Law – What You Should Know About Oil Rig Jobs and Why
Employment on an oil rig is synonymous with excellent pay for a standard worker, but locating a job on a rig can be problematic. There are several different positions that require some expertise, but there are also some entry level positions available. The problem is finding a drilling company that is willing to take a chance on a worker who has never worked on the open seas. There are two distinct types of oil rigs, and the legalities of the workplace are different in terms of what legislation is in place to protect the workers in case of injury. Depending on the work location, there are two statutes that cover workers who may be injured on the job. Offshore injury lawyers are experienced and knowledgeable in handling these types of cases.
Entry Level Positions
Common entry level oil rig jobs are called roughnecks and roustabouts within the trade, but they actually amount to deckhand positions that perform various manual labor duties. They are crucial to a rig operation, as much of the work on any rig involves intensive labor. The pay is good, but the workers earn it. Most promotion is done within the rig roster, so the best way to work through the system is be a solid team member on the rig.
These oil jobs are not for everyone, as a derrickhand will be involved with working at high altitudes in confined quarters. The trade off is good pay, at roughly $17 to $25 per hour. Commonly called tripping, it requires the worker to prepare the drill for insertion to the drilling hole from an elevated platform. This is clearly a dangerous job, but is a necessary operation and oil rig companies are highly dependent on these technicians to retrieve oil from beneath the ocean floor.
Drillers are essentially the boss of a particular crew. Oil rigs run on a 24-hour schedule, so there are three or four crews on a rig, depending on the operation work cycle. Drillers are largely responsible for everything that occurs involving their crew. However, the pay scale for an experienced driller is higher than typical manual labor positions, up to $30 per hour.
The motorman position is the primary maintenance worker on a rig. There is a group of motors that are necessary for any oil rig to operate properly, and these motors must be maintained at all times. Becoming a motorman is a definite possibility for any oil rig worker, and is especially appealing to those with mechanical abilities. Previous experience is not always necessary.
Of course, all oil rigs are in need of solid management personnel to coordinate the staff and supervise production. Additionally, management workers are responsible for reporting injuries that occur on the rig. It is important for all workers to know what workers compensation coverage applies to their rig, as stationery rigs are covered by longshoremen coverage and floating rig workers are covered by the Jones Act because the rig is actually navigating the waters. These two pieces of legislation work together to provide workers’ compensation for employees who may be injured while working on an oil rig.
Midnight Walker enjoys blogging about jobs and careers and is passionate about helping people find employment options in a difficult market. She posts these tips for those workers who may be eligible for maritime jobs on oil rigs. The experienced Offshore injury lawyers at Doyle Raizner can help employees recover compensation if they are injured while working offshore.