Operates 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.
This career is part of the Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources cluster Power, Structural and Technical Systems pathway.
A person in this career:
- Positions jacks, timbers, or roof supports, and installs casings, to prevent cave-ins.
- Repositions machines and moves controls to make additional holes or cuts.
- Cuts entries between rooms and haulage ways.
- Observes indicator lights and gauges, and listens to machine operation to detect binding or stoppage of tools or other equipment problems.
- Replaces worn or broken tools and machine bits and parts, using wrenches, pry bars, and other hand tools, and lubricate machines, using grease guns.
- Presses buttons to activate conveyor belts, and pushes or pulls chain handles to regulate conveyor movement so that material can be moved or loaded into dinkey cars or dump trucks.
- Moves planer levers to control and adjust the movement of equipment, the speed, height, and depth of cuts, and to rotate swivel cutting booms.
- Cuts slots along working faces of coal, salt, or other non-metal deposits to facilitate blasting, by moving levers to start the machine, and to control the vertical reciprocating drills.
- Signals that machine plow blades are properly positioned, using electronic buzzers or two-way radios.
- Cuts and moves shale from open pits.