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Details for Mine Cutting and Channeling Machine Operators


Description

Operate machinery--such as longwall shears, plows, and cutting machines--to cut or channel along the face or seams of coal mines, stone quarries, or other mining surfaces to facilitate blasting, separating, or removing minerals or materials from mines or from the earth's surface.

Tasks

  • Position jacks, timbers, or roof supports, and install casings, in order to prevent cave-ins.
  • Reposition machines and move controls in order to make additional holes or cuts.
  • Cut entries between rooms and haulage-ways.
  • Observe indicator lights and gauges, and listen to machine operation in order to detect binding or stoppage of tools or other equipment problems.
  • Replace worn or broken tools and machine bits and parts, using wrenches, pry bars, and other hand tools, and lubricate machines, using grease guns.
  • Press buttons to activate conveyor belts, and push or pull chain handles to regulate conveyor movement so that material can be moved or loaded into dinkey cars or dump trucks.
  • Move planer levers to control and adjust the movement of equipment, the speed, height, and depth of cuts, and to rotate swivel cutting booms.
  • Cut slots along working faces of coal, salt, or other non-metal deposits in order to facilitate blasting, by moving levers to start the machine and to control the vertical reciprocating drills.
  • Signal that machine plow blades are properly positioned, using electronic buzzers or two-way radios.
  • Cut and move shale from open pits.
  • Drive mobile, truck-mounted, or track-mounted drilling or cutting machine in mines and quarries or on construction sites.
  • Move controls to start and position drill cutters or torches, and to advance tools into mines or quarry faces in order to complete horizontal or vertical cuts.
  • Advance plow blades through coal strata by remote control, according to electronic or radio signals from the tailer.
  • Determine locations, boundaries, and depths of holes or channels to be cut.
  • Signal crewmembers to adjust the speed of equipment to the rate of installation of roof supports, and to adjust the speed of conveyors to the volume of coal.
  • Remove debris such as loose shale from channels and planer travel areas.
  • Charge and set off explosives in blasting holes.
  • Signal truck drivers to position their vehicles for receiving shale from planer hoppers.
  • Monitor movement of shale along conveyors from hoppers to trucks or railcars.
  • Guide and assist crews in laying track for machines and resetting planer rails, supports, and blocking, using jacks, shovels, sledges, picks, and pinch bars.
  • Free jams in planer hoppers, using metal pinch bars.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Education, Training, Experience

  • Education - These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

Knowledge

  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

Skills

  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Related Careers

  • Continuous Mining Machine Operators
  • Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas
  • Helpers--Extraction Workers
  • Loading Machine Operators, Underground Mining
  • Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators
  • Paving, Surfacing, and Tamping Equipment Operators
  • Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas
  • Shuttle Car Operators
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