Underground Miner

Use explosives and machines to get precious ores out of mines.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$34,000 – $60,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Underground Miners do?

In many ways, mining has changed very little throughout its history. The precious metals, ores, stones, and gems that we admire and rely on are still hidden under rock-hard layers of earth. To bring them to the surface, mining companies rely on large machines and workers who are willing to spend their days underground.

Today’s Underground Miner, however, has a variety of choices compared to the Miners of yesteryears, who had to make do with pickaxes and buckets. Most jobs now rely on computerized and high-performance equipment, but, as an Underground Miner, you can choose which tasks to focus on.

For example, a Loading Machine Operator loads the loose debris into a mine cart or onto a conveyor belt for transport out of the mine. A Drilling Machine Operator drills holes for explosives. A Shot Firer fills holes with explosives, which are ignited to loosen the Earth’s grasp.

There are three main types of mining processes used by today’s Underground Miners. Conventional mining involves cutting, drilling, and using explosives to access the materials. Continuous mining does not use explosives, but relies on a constant flow of cutting, scraping, loading, and moving of materials. Longwall mining involves ripping long sheets of coal or other materials from the mine’s walls.

So, whether you decide to become a Fire Boss who evaluates all the safety features of the job site, or a Cutting Machine Operator, your work brings coal, stone, rock, ore, and other materials to the surface for the rest of us to use.

Should I be an Underground Miner?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Production Miner, Under Ground Miner

    How to become an Underground Miner

    Most Underground Miners have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9aaaaa&chl=no+college+%28100%25%29|||||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,100,100
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