There is nothing easy about being on the crew of an offshore oil rig, but if you are looking for a good paying job that is full of excitement, and a little danger, you might be interested in becoming a member of a drill crew. The average pay for members of the drill crew range anywhere from about $43,000 to close to $70,000, depending on the amount of experience and technical skill the crew member has.
A “Driller” has one of the most important jobs on the rig, and is responsible for pretty much everything that happens on the rig and beneath it. To do this job, you need to have technical knowledge and a lot of experience in the field. Drillers operate the machinery that actually drills the hole in the seabed. They need to be familiar with pressure systems and readings, drilling fluids, and all emergency operations and procedures. Normally, a driller is someone who has advanced through the years from a position as a derrickman.
An “Assistant Driller” is just that. This worker assists the driller and is also the supervisor for the “roughnecks” and the derrickmen. He or she are also sometimes known as trainee drillers.
A “derrickman” is in charge of the operation and maintenance of the mud, and mud pumps, and other equipment in the pump room. They get their name from the fact that they spend a lot of time on the derrick-racking pipe, when they are not in the pump room. They may also work with chemicals when mixing the drilling fluids.
The “pumpman” assists the derrickman, or, he may assist as a roughneck when needed.
The “roughneck” is the position where most members of the drilling crew begin their careers. They have the responsibility to take care of the machinery and equipment that is used for the drilling operation. Experience in welding and mechanics is useful in this job. The supervisor of the roughnecks is called the Chief Driller. While this is a physically demanding job, it does have its perks, and it can lead to other jobs on the rig, and an increase in salary.
The work on an offshore rig is demanding and hard, but there are benefits. The pay is good, insurance is paid by the company, and room and board are provided. Many people who have worked on rigs for years wouldn’t want to do anything else.