A driller’s assistant helps to move and set up drilling rigs and related equipment. They help with the drilling of holes for such things as natural gas, oil and water, building foundations, minerals exploration and site investigation.
Personal requirements of a driller's assistant may include:
- Strong physical finess
- Willing to work long hours
- Ability to work as a part of a team
- Enjoy practical and manual activities
- Aptitude for mechanics and ablility to handle machinery
- Good organisational skills
- Able to record details accurately
- Clean police record
- Willing to work in remote areas under difficult conditions
- Have a drug and alcohol clearance
- Pass a pre-employment medical examination
- Be over 18 years old (it is a legal requirement on most mine and quarry sites)
Drillers' assistants may complete the following tasks:
- Assist with moving drilling rigs and equipment from site to site
- Set up in the new site and connect power cables (or hoses for water and air supply)
- Operate equipment, such as pumps for air, water and mud
- Carry out minor maintenance and repairs, including lubrication and cleaning
- Help obtain good quality drilling core samples
- Dig and clean mud pits and drains
- Mix and test drilling fluids, chemicals and grout
- Assist in slotting, welding and inserting casing screens
Generally, this occupation does not require specific education as an entry requirement; practical skills are often more important than level of education. However, Certificate I or II training is available for some jobs. You can also become a driller's assistant through a traineeship in drilling operations. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require completion of Year 10. Once you have work experience you can specialise as a driller.
In addition, once you have undertaken work experience you may be able to develop, and have recognised, additional skills under the Resources and Infrastructure Industry Training Package that will expand your career opportunities within this industry.
Occupation opportunities as a driller's assistant can be found in the gas and oil industry (mining companies, drilling contractors), mineral exploration and investigation industry and on construction sites. Usually this job takes place at oil and gas exploration and production facilities situated offshore and onshore, construction sites and mines.