Working on an Oil Rig

By George Pettit

As the world searches for new oil fields which will replace those that are beginning to run dry, the number of available jobs on oil rigs are increasing.
As with many professions, you'll find it easier to get work on an oil rig once you have some experience, but getting that first break may take a little time as safety concerns mean many supervisors are reluctant to hire those without prior experience, even for the unskilled positions.

No formal qualifications are usually required to work on an oil rig but candidates with backgrounds in shipbuilding, construction and engineering are generally preferred. It may also be possible to join a rig as an apprentice. Wherever you start, there are many opportunities for advancement as you gain experience and skills.

The most basic, entry level position available on an oil rig is known as a roustabout and involves manual laboring and maintenance tasks. This may include cleaning and painting the area around the drilling platform, moving equipment and supplies and helping to mix the lubricant for the drill bit, a substance known as mud.