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17. Oil & Gas Well Operator
Median Salary: $71,760.00
Change in Salary (2008–2014): +24%
Total Employees: 20,100
Change in Employees (2008–2014): +45%
Drilling and service rigs are the bedrock of the energy industry, extracting the fuel that is so vital to the Canadian economy. This job category includes supervisors who direct and manage the work that takes place in the field, as well as the drillers, servicers and testers who operate the rigs and keep them maintained. It’s a gruelling profession: most operators are on call 24 hours a day, and often work in isolated locations for long stretches. Demand for rig workers grew significantly over the last half-decade, but oil price slump bodes ill for future employment growth prospects.