Prospecting Driller

Investigate potential oil-well sites by testing soil samples.
picture of Prospecting Driller

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$31,000 – $98,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Prospecting Drillers do?

Pockets of oil and gas lie deep beneath the ground, just waiting to be tapped and sold to eager customers. Accessing these treasures means digging deep holes at precise intervals, measuring each hole carefully, and bringing back the dug-up dirt for analysis. As a Prospecting Driller, you dig these holes.

Someone else determines where the holes must be dug and how deep they should be. At the beginning of the project, the Prospecting Driller is given a set of drawings that contains that information. Before you head to the site, you ask any questions you have about the holes you should drill. The Prospecting Driller then packs up his or her gear and heads to the site.

When you arrive, you place the drill in the precise spot and begin your work. You stop the drill periodically, remove the core of soil from the drill, and note down when you removed the soil and how far down you had drilled when you pulled up the samples. Then, you turn the drill back on and dig yet deeper. At the end of the process, you give all of the soil samples to your boss for analysis.

The drill must be kept sharp so it can dig down efficiently through dirt and rock. The small blades on the drill often weaken or break with use, and you replace those blades when they seem worn. Additionally, you lubricate the drill at the end of each workday and make sure it’s in proper operating condition for the next hole you’ll dig.

Should I be a Prospecting Driller?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.

  • Also known as: Drilling Supervisor, Rotary Driller, Prospecting

    How to become a Prospecting Driller

    Most Prospecting Drillers have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Bachelor's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9gajaa&chl=no+college+%2860%25%29|certificate+%2831%25%29||bachelor%27s+%289%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,60,60
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