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Career profile Miner Operator

Also known as Coal Hauler Operator, Load Haul Dump Operator (LHD Operator), Loader Operator, Loading Machine Operator, Miner Operator, Muck Hauler, Production Miner, Ram Car Operator, Shuttle Car Operator, Under Ground Miner

Miner Operator

Also known as Coal Hauler Operator, Load Haul Dump Operator (LHD Operator), Loader Operator

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$36,750 - $75,630 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Operations Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Mechanical
  • Education and Training
  • Administration and Management
Core tasks
  • Read written instructions or confer with supervisors about schedules and materials to be moved.
  • Control conveyors that run the entire length of shuttle cars to distribute loads as loading progresses.
  • Direct other workers to move stakes, place blocks, position anchors or cables, or move materials.
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What does a Miner Operator do?

Miner Operators operate underground loading or moving machine to load or move coal, ore, or rock using shuttle or mine car or conveyors.

In addition, Miner Operators equipment may include power shovels, hoisting engines equipped with cable-drawn scraper or scoop, or machines equipped with gathering arms and conveyor.

What kind of tasks does a Miner Operator perform regularly?

Miner Operators are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Pry off loose material from roofs and move it into the paths of machines, using crowbars.
  • Move trailing electrical cables clear of obstructions, using rubber safety gloves.
  • Drive machines into piles of material blasted from working faces.
  • Operate levers to move conveyor booms or shovels so that mine contents such as coal, rock, and ore can be placed into cars or onto conveyors.
  • Clean hoppers, and clean spillage from tracks, walks, driveways, and conveyor decking.
  • Oil, lubricate, and adjust conveyors, crushers, and other equipment, using hand tools and lubricating equipment.
  • Replace hydraulic hoses, headlight bulbs, and gathering-arm teeth.

The above responsibilities are specific to Miner Operators. More generally, Miner Operators are involved in several broader types of activities:

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or watercraft.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

What is a Miner Operator salary?

The median salary for a Miner Operator is $56,640, and the average salary is $56,100. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Miner Operator salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Miner Operators earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Miner Operators earn less than $36,750 per year, 25% earn less than $46,750, 75% earn less than $64,010, and 90% earn less than $75,630.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Miner Operators is expected to change by -5.7%, and there should be roughly 400 open positions for Miner Operators every year.

Median annual salary
Typical salary range
$36,750 - $75,630
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)

What personality traits are common among Miner Operators?


Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Miner Operator are usually higher in their Realistic and Conventional interests.

Miner Operators typically have very strong Realistic interests. 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.

Also, Miner Operators typically have moderate Conventional interests. 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.


People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Miner Operator tend to value Support, Working Conditions, and Relationships.

Most importantly, Miner Operators strongly value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Miner Operators moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Lastly, Miner Operators somewhat value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Miner Operators must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, concern for others, and dependability.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Miner Operators, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

What education and training do Miner Operators need?

Working as a Miner Operator usually requires a high school diploma.

Miner Operators need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Miner Operators

  • 11.3% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 53.8% completed high school or secondary school
  • 23.2% completed some college coursework
  • 6.3% earned a Associate's degree
  • 5.0% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 0.4% earned a Master's degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Miner Operators

Miner Operators may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as mechanical, education and training, or administration and management knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Miner Operators might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
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.
Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Law and Government
Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

Important Abilities needed by Miner Operators

Miner Operators must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Miner Operators need abilities such as control precision, multilimb coordination, and manual dexterity in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Miner Operators, ranked by their relative importance.

Control Precision
The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
Multilimb Coordination
The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Depth Perception
The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.

Critical Skills needed by Miner Operators

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Miner Operators frequently use skills like operations monitoring, operation and control, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Miner Operators, ranked by their relative importance.

Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Operation and Control
Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.