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How to become a miner in Australia: careers in mining

Miners use their individual skill sets to extract natural resources from the earth’s surface. They carry out a range of duties at a mining job site. Miners may operate heavy machinery, perform infrastructure duties in mine shafts or cut into ore bodies. A mine is a very large workplace requiring many people who specialise in a range of fields.
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Being a miner: daily duties

The daily duties of a miner will vary depending on their experience, skills, the specialisation they have pursued and the type of mineral or ore they are mining for. In general, however, all miners must follow processes designed to keep people safe while working in mines. Common tasks can include aiding in shaft building, operating heavy moving and drilling machinery, loading mine cars with natural resources, providing infrastructure to shafts, drilling into bodies of ore and acknowledging and reporting on any potential safety hazards.

Tasks:

  • Noting potential health and safety hazards
  • Loading mine carts
  • Erecting infrastructure
  • Running cables and other tubes
  • Operating heavy machinery

Being a miner: skills for success

Mining can be physically draining and demanding work as well as potentially hazardous, so a willingness to work in these conditions is essential. A good degree of physical fitness is necessary, as is a solid understanding of workplace health and safety and the ability to constantly assess safety concerns. Miners need to be free from the influence of alcohol and drugs and be able to work in dark and tight spaces.
Skills/attributes
  • Physical fitness
  • Ability to work in dark and tight spaces
  • Free from influence of alcohol and drugs
  • Able to recognise hazards
  • Able to think logically

Specialised roles within mining

There are a range of careers and specialisations you can pursue within the mining industry, with the right experience and qualifications
  • Underground miner
    These miners enter underground mines via vertical shafts or natural declines to perform many duties related to maintaining the structure of the mine and extracting resources. They are often based in remote areas and their work environments can be very physically demanding.
  • Driller’s Assistant
    A driller’s assistant works under the supervision and guidance of a senior driller. Their duties include rig moving, assessing drilling fluid, completing repairs and general machine maintenance.
  • Mine shift supervisor
    A mine shift supervisor works both above and below ground, performing thorough safety routine checks. They identify potential workplace hazards and introduce rules and procedures to prevent the risk of injury and harm.

Educational pathways for miners

To pursue a career in mining, there are a range of study options available that can assist you to reach your career goals.
  • Start your career
    A course relevant to your career goals will help you get a head start in the mining industry.
  • Strengthen your skills
    Gain professional, industry-recognised skills with these focused study options.
  • Build your resume
    Build your skills and learn about the natural resource industry’s procedures and processes.
  • Industry requirements
    Depending on your specialisation in the mining industry, you may be required to hold a relevant licence or accreditation.
  • Finding Work
    Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your mining career. Emphasise your personal strengths and achievements in your resume and target your cover letter to the job description listed.
  • Employment Prospects
    Australia has been experiencing a mining boom with considerable numbers of new opportunities in the mining industry over the past five years, which is projected to remain steady.

Resources for miners

Career FAQs makes every effort to ensure the information we provide is correct at the time of publication. We welcome your input to help keep our career profiles as accurate and up to date as possible. All queries and feedback will be taken into consideration as we conduct periodic reviews of our content. Add your voice to the conversation!


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