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Drillers enjoy working with heavy machinery and other drilling equipment. They may work alone for long periods or in teams. They need a great deal of physical strength and the ability to work on practical tasks, following the instructions of their supervisors.

Drillers may do some or all of the following

  • dismantle, move, and reassemble drilling rigs and accessory plant
  • oversee assembly of the drilling tools
  • operate the drilling and hoisting equipment
  • operate pumps to expel air, water, and mud from the hole
  • take samples of ore, liquids, and gases, and package them
  • maintain, repair, lubricate, and clean machinery
  • keep written records of drill depths
  • monitor plant and equipment, ensuring it is running safely during drilling.

A driller needs to have

  • knowledge of well pressure systems, drilling fluids, and their characteristics
  • understanding of basic drilling methods and terms
  • mechanical skills
  • skill using and caring for equipment
  • knowledge of emergency procedures and worksite safety rules
  • knowledge of correct lifting techniques.

Drillers need to be

  • safety-conscious
  • hard-working
  • able to concentrate for long periods
  • adaptable
  • observant, with an eye for detail
  • able to follow instructions
  • comfortable working at heights.

Drillers need knowledge of

  • emergency procedures and worksite health and safety rules
  • correct lifting techniques.
  • well pressure systems, drilling fluids, and their characteristics
  • basic drilling methods and terms


Drilling Specialisations

  • Hydrocarbon Driller: Hydrcarbon drillers drill for oil, gas, and steam both on and offshore.
  • Non-Hydrocarbon Driller: Non-hydrocarbon drillers drill holes in the ground for reasons other than discovering oil and gas. They might drill into the ground to locate water for a well, or into large rocks so explosives can be used to break it up, or at a construction site to help prepare foundations.