Working on an oil rig is demanding work. For example, a person who is working on a land rig in Alberta can expect to work two weeks straight and then get one week off. They will be working 12 hour days, which works out to 84 hours per working week. Pay is calculated based on 44 hours of regular pay and 40 hours of overtime.
Offshore oil rig workers will likely be scheduled for two weeks on and two weeks off. A roughneck can expect to make between $60,000.00 and $70,000.00 per year, plus bonuses. These workers also get excellent bonuses.
If you are interested in working on an oil rig, you will want to be prepared for what working (and living) in this type of environment will be like. A number of companies offer courses for new workers.
A Basic Offshore Survival & Firefighting Certificate course can be completed in a few days. Once you have successfully completed it, you will receive a certificate that is valid for a period of four years. Having this certificate in hand will make you more attractive to a prospective employer than someone who does not have this designation.
The course will cover how to use lifejackets correctly, swimming techniques, and water safety. Students also learn how to climb a rope and how to safely jump into the water from a considerable height.
Maritime Drilling Schools Ltd. is one example of a company offering oil rig training to prospective oil workers. Classes are offered at locations in Nova Scotia, Florida, South Africa, and Australia.
A person enrolling in the Pre-Employment Floorman (or Roughneck) program will receive 20 days of rig training (hands on), safety procedures, and drilling. Students will learn about the different parts of an oil rig and how the drilling process works. Once the course has been completed, each student takes a final exam lasting for one hour. A minimum grade of 70 percent must be achieved to pass the course.
Someone who has some experience working on the oil rig may be interested in enrolling in the Drilling
Safety Manager/Trainer program. This program is conducted over five weeks.
The first part of the safety drilling safety manager program is a one-week course on safety management. It covers basic oil drilling from a non-technical point of view, including the role the various crew members on the rig play in the operation.
Slides, videos, and PowerPoint presentations are used to explain to students how to lay down pipe, make a connection safely, how to use tongs, and how tripping pipe works (in and out of the hole). When this portion of the course is finished, the student will have learned to identify unsafe practices on the drilling floor.
The second part of the course takes three weeks, and is designed to give the participants the information they will need to develop and implement safety programs on an oil rig. It includes fall safety and how to erect scaffolding properly to avoid accidents. Basic fire safety is covered, along with how to safely work in confined area. Other topic areas include basic First Aid, CPR, Hazardous Materials, and Occupational Health and Safety issues.
In the third part of the course, the students receive instruction on how to use Microsoft Office programs (PowerPoint, Excel, and Word) to create training materials for employees. Part of the Drilling Safety Manager/Trainer’s job responsibilities are to educate fellow workers about safety issues. In addition, these people will be asked to prepare safety reports, including charts and graphs, so that safety documentation is kept current.