Surface Mining Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators
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Overview
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Operate or tend machinery at surface mining site, equipped with scoops, shovels, or buckets to excavate and load loose materials.
Titles for this career often contain these words
OperatorShovelMachineScoopExcavatorBackDiggerHoeEquipmentTramBackhoeDraglineEarthMovingElectricExcavationPayloaderPitPlungerPowerDriverSepticTankSteamAerialAirFillerClamCoalDieselOilerTechnicianFoundationGasGraveHarvesterHeavyHorsebackHydroLoaderMechanicalMuckingInstallerSetterShovelmanStripperTowerTrackTrenchTrencherTrenching
Employment
Workforce size
Surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators, with 49,700 workers, are near the middle of all careers in the number employed.
Predicted employment growth
Over the next decade, jobs for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators are expected to grow by 7%, and should have about 6,500 job openings a year.
Salaries
Context: Median Salary
How do salaries for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators compare to other jobs' salaries?
Distribution: What salary can you expect?
See what most surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators earn.
$45K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K
Where are the most jobs?
We ranked the number of jobs in Surface Mining Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators per thousand workers in each state, DC, and Puerto Rico. Blue indicates low density, with lighter shades moving to yellow indicating higher numbers working in this profession.
AKMEWIVTNHWAIDMTNDMNILMINYMAORUTWYSDIAINOHPANJCTRICANVCONEMOKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
Worker concerns
Some jobs are more stressful than others, and some are just plain dangerous. The following list gives the percentages of surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators who report hazardous or difficult situations typically occurring at least once a week.
  • Exposed to Contaminants (81%)
  • Exposed to Whole Body Vibration (80%)
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment (78%)
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety (71%)
  • Consequence of Error (66%)
  • Time Pressure (64%)
  • Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings (56%)
  • Exposed to Hazardous Conditions (34%)
  • Exposed to High Places (32%)
SOURCES:
Pathways to this career
Education attained by surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators typically hold a high school diploma or equivalent.

Details: Education and training recommended for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators

Although no formal educational credential is usually required, some companies prefer to hire material moving machine operators who have a high school diploma. For crane and tower operators, excavating machine operators, and dredge operators, however, a high school diploma or equivalent typically is required.

Details: Licensing and certification recommended for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators

A number of states and several cities require crane operators to be licensed. To get a license, operators typically must complete a skills test in which they show that they can control a crane. They also must pass a written exam that tests their knowledge of safety rules and procedures. Some crane operators and industrial truck and tractor operators may obtain certification, which includes passing a written exam.

Education attained by surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators
None
High School
Some College
Associate's/Cert.
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Professional Degree
Doctorate

We only include salary data when the survey error is less than 20%, so you may see only partial information for some categories.

The Department of Education recommends the following college degree programs as preparation for this career. You can click the program row to learn more about the program and explore a list of schools that offer the program.

Number of degrees awarded in 2017
Education
Education level of awarded degrees
Associate's degree or certificate
Bachelor's
Graduate
Gender
Gender of graduates
Men
Women
Race/Origin
Race/origin of graduates
White
Minority
International
Variation by state
State-by-state employment numbers

Some careers tend to be centered in specific parts of the country. For example, most jobs in fashion are in New York or California. Let's see if your dream job is easy to find in your dream location! We have a few choices for viewing the data that can help you get a full employment picture.

Job density versus job count

Which states hire the most surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators? We wonder if that's a fair question since states come in all sizes, so instead let's start with the question of which states have the highest density of people working as surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators. You can choose to view the number of jobs per state if you prefer.

Choose the metric to review
Jobs per 1000 working
Number of jobs
Number of Surface Mining Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators per 1,000 workers (BLS)
Select a state to see local area details
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0.00.51.01.52.02.5
Salaries by state
Let's get a feel for where surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators earn the highest salaries. There are several choices for which data we consider and how we view that data, and each can lead to different conclusions, so please read on...
Median salary versus state ratio

We use two methods to compare salaries across states:

  • In-state comparisons: the ratio of median (middle) salaries for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators compared to the median salary for all people working in each state, or
  • Median salary: the unaltered median salaries for surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators.

We hope the ratio allows perspective about how salaries may compare to the regional cost-of-living.

Choose the metric to review
Location-adjusted median salary
Median salary
Location-adjusted median salary for Surface Mining Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators (BLS)
The darkest shading corresponds to states in which surface mining excavating and loading machine and dragline operators earn the highest salary when compared to other jobs in the state. We think this ratio might be a better indicator than the actual salary for your buying power as a state resident.
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEWIVTNHWAIDMTNDMNILMINYMAORUTWYSDIAINOHPANJCTRICANVCONEMOKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
$0$20K$40K$60K$80K
Compare to similar jobs

If this job interests you, then use the tabs and education selector to find other careers that might be a good fit for you.

How should the career similarity be computed?

There are a number of ways to measure the similarity of jobs, here are a few we provide:

  • Interests: Also known as a Holland Code - Are you a thinker? A helper? What fits your personality?
  • Environment: Are there hazards? Will you be comfortable? Will it be stressful?
  • Knowledge: What do you need to know the most about?
  • Physical Abilities: Do you need to especially strong or coordinated?
Choose the similarity measure to compare careers
Interests
Environment
Knowledge
Physical Abilities
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