My job title is gas/oil field operator. First there is a lot of
driving involved, from 100 to 500 kms per day driving in the
Rocky Mountains and foothills from well to well. My primary
function is to watch over and take daily readings such as
pressures and flows and temperatures of gases, oils, cooling
systems and heating systems. If at any time there is something
to repair or change out a crew is called in specially trained to
work in sour gas atmospheres. It is my job to ensure that
trucking companies are called in as needed to remove liquids
such as used or produced oil and sour water accumulation. Also
to input work orders within our company computer system
indicating work which is required such as preventative
maintenance or faulty meters/indicators/recording equipment. The
trade at the appropriate time then will be dispersed to do the
work such as but not limited to - heavy duty mechanics,
instrumentation, electricians, insulators, welders, general
maintenance, pipe fitters, hot shot delivery.
The job comes with some surprises at times as all equipment is
subject to breakdown, wear down, and failure. As far as times
for specific tasks, we are not limited by a clock but perform
our duties in the safest and timeliest manner possible as we
fulfill our contract. Our shifts are normally 12.5 hours not
including a 50 minute drive to and from our main facility at
which time we transfer from a crew van to our company field
truck and carry on to check our designated fields from there. At
times we are required in the case of non controlled facility or
well shutdowns to work later until shift relief arrives at the
particular site or the problem is either rectified or under
The qualifications you require for this position are as follows:
GPO or Gas Plant Operations course which is four levels and can
be completed in night school or on Saturdays as provided by our
local college. A valid drivers licence, and an ability to work a
lone as well as make minor decisions and problem solve. Written
and verbal communication are an asset and some computer
experience would be good although there is on the job training.
My shift is seven days on , seven days off, seven nights on, seven nights off as
a monthly rotation which in itself is a nice benefit as it allows for quality
time with family and lots of time for travel.
The wage is pretty good ranging from $18.00 to $35.00 an hour and up.
Sometimes the night shifts are long especially if everything is
running good, on the other hand on a single night shift on
mountain roads if things are going wrong you could drive up to
500kms. And for the most part you are by yourself.
The working hours consist of three different hourly shifts:
#1 12.5 hours a day or night alternating seven shifts in a row with a week on
then a week off. The .5 hour accumulates over a three month period in order to
give you what we call a long change or two of your regular working days off
generally at the beginning or end of your seven day shift run.
#2 12.5 hours a day or night only within a month you work your seven night
shifts in a row but your day shifts are broke up as in two on, two off, three on
two off, two on, three off. On this shift you work the same amount of shifts as
in #1 and you do get a week off after your night shifts.
#3 10.5 hours per day, four days a week on a rotation with two others so there
is always daily coverage. With this shift there is no seven days off but you do
get the same long change every three months.
Base salary is from $37,800 to $73,500 with the option to work
overtime at time and a half, which most of the employees seem to
get 400 to 600 hours per year if you want it. We as a contractor
do not receive bonuses but we have good benefits and our
clothing and work clothes are paid for.
Advice to Jobseekers
Gas/Oil Field Operator
The job out look is great, as long as gas and oil is required,
operators for such facilities will continue to be in demand.
The number one thing you must be able to enjoy, okay two things,
is be able to work by your self and enjoy driving.