Career summary

Details for Service Unit Operators, Oil, Gas, and Mining


Description

Operate equipment to increase oil flow from producing wells or to remove stuck pipe, casing, tools, or other obstructions from drilling wells. May also perform similar services in mining exploration operations.

Tasks

  • Maintain and perform safety inspections on equipment and tools.
  • Operate controls that raise derricks or level rigs.
  • Listen to engines, rotary chains, or other equipment to detect faulty operations or unusual well conditions.
  • Prepare reports of services rendered, tools used, or time required, for billing purposes.
  • Install pressure-control devices onto wellheads.
  • Confer with others to gather information regarding pipe or tool sizes or borehole conditions in wells.
  • Operate pumps that circulate water, oil, or other fluids through wells to remove sand or other materials obstructing the free flow of oil.
  • Drive truck-mounted units to well sites.
  • Interpret instrument readings to ascertain the depth of obstruction.
  • Thread cables through derrick pulleys, using hand tools.
  • Select fishing methods or tools for removing obstacles such as liners, broken casing, screens, or drill pipe.
  • Close and seal wells no longer in use.
  • Direct drilling crews performing activities such as assembling and connecting pipe, applying weights to drill pipes, or drilling around lodged obstacles.
  • Apply green technologies or techniques such as the use of coiled tubing, slim-hole drilling, horizontal drilling, hydraulic fracturing, or gas lift systems.
  • Operate specialized equipment to remove obstructions by backing-off or severing pipes by chemical or explosive action.
  • Perforate well casings or sidewalls of boreholes with explosive charges.
  • Examine unserviceable wells to determine actions to be taken to improve well conditions.
  • Monitor sound wave generating or detecting mechanisms to determine well fluid levels.
  • Insert detection instruments into wells with obstructions.

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.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

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

  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

Skills

  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

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