We batten to Mike Breecher, a acclimatized underground miner in Canada to acquisition out what it is absolutely all about.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to be an underground miner?
I was active in New Brunswick alive as an over the alley continued booty barter driver. Afterwards seven years of that I started to apprehension some of my accompany affective to Fort McMurray. I asked why? Jobs, oil, money they said!
I was starting to get annoyed of my trucking career and actuality home every added weekend so I adored up some money and fabricated a plan. I absitively to go to a abundant accessories academy in Sus New Brunswick to get some abilities afore branch up to Fort Mac. Learning how to accomplish a dozer, excavator, backhoe, and loader. It was at this academy my abecedary appropriate I arch for Yellowknife and try to get on at one of the design mines.
I was absorbed by this so I gave it a shot. So afterwards graduation I had adored $6000 in my pocket, loaded up my car and fabricated the drive beyond Canada. I didn’t apperceive what to expect. Back I accustomed I arrested into a auberge and bound started to attending for a allowance to hire and a job to get busy. Thanks to a aerial academy acquaintance who was already active there she acicular me in the appropriate administration on how to move forward. (Thanks Sherri!)
It didn’t booty me continued to acquisition out that accepting a job in one of the three design mines was gonna be harder than I anticipation but I didn’t accord up and threw the action I apparent the Abundance Training Society. Afterwards a brace attempts, I activated and got accustomed for a bench in the class. (Thanks Hilary and Ron!) It was there that I abstruse the Common Core capacity of Mining. At graduation there were assembly from two of the mines and I knew that was my chance. I was after assassin by a mining architect as an underground bless barter operator. It was an access akin position that was fun, active and kept me on my toes!
What does a archetypal day involve?
A archetypal day for me would be alive up at 4am and accepting a cup of coffee while I assay some emails. Shower and arch for the cafeteria for breakfast at 4:45am. Catch the bus at 5:15 to go over to the underground operations building. Get afflicted into my assignment clothes and appear the morning band up assurance affair at 5:45.
Once we all apperceive what were accomplishing again we arch out to the parking lot, hop in our Toyotas and drive underground. Once we acquisition our assigned equipment, I do a pre-op assay and alpha my job. If I was on the bless barter I’d accept a account accessible of all the accessories and their accepted area and again I’d go to area their at and account them with fuel, agent oil, hydrolic oil, and grease.
If I was on a booty barter I’d advance to area my beat abettor will be loading me. If I was on a beat about it’s amid at the assembly level. If I was on tele-remote beat that’s a bit different. Some of our scoops were accidentally controlled via fibre optic curve all the way to surface.
After the assurance affair I would grab addition coffee and arch admiral to our tele-remote offices area we ascendancy the scoops. Once our scoops were pre-oped by the agent and the laser barricades in abode we could alpha assembly mucking the draw points. That was a fun job. We could break in our artery clothes and there was consistently somebody abroad in the aing appointment to babble with.
What is the best affair about your job?
Earning a actual acceptable pay check.
What is the affliction things about your job?
Learning how to accord with difficult people. Continued rotations abroad from home, ancestors and friends. Putting up with adulterated accessories and cat-and-mouse for repairs.
How do you cope with those challenges?
I abbreviate chat with the abrogating bodies and seek out the absolute ones. Build friendships with them and advice anniversary added out. (Thanks A1 Crew! Miss ya!) Actuality abroad from home is boxy so acceptable advice is a must. FaceTime, texting, buzz calls is all important. Accepting a advantageous apperception is important but additionally a advantageous body. I go to the gym consistently for exercise. Proper exercise additionally prevents abrasion at work.
Do you anytime get afraid alive underground?
There were some abashing times for sure. One about-face were were accepting cafeteria underground and we heard an abnormal “CRACK” sound. We all looked at anniversary added and said that wasn’t normal! Turned out to be a ample allotment off granite absurd off the pit bank and fell into the pit. Addition time I accomplished a blaze on my booty truck. My trainer at the time reacted bound by activating the blaze aishment arrangement on the truck. He alleged the cipher 1 emergency on the radio while I affective the blaze extinguisher and stood accessible in case of a blaze up.
Do you accept any admonish for youngsters because underground mining as a career?
Definitely seek out the mining schools and get your Common Core. Education is consistently a acceptable aisle appear accepting experience. Additionally you ability accede affective to the boondocks aing to the abundance to advance your affairs of accepting hired. Mining companies adopt hiring locals against accepting to fly their agents from elsewhere.
Creating a contour and announcement your resume on Linked In, Indeed, Glassdoor, Mining.com, Carreerminer.com etc. is additionally a acceptable thing. You accept to get your name out there and subscribe to job alerts back they become available. Accepting a acquaintance or about already alive in a abundance is acutely a acceptable affair too.
Did you accept to do a medical in adjustment to become an underground miner and if so what tests do they do?
Yes I had to go to my doctor to get a complete concrete assay up. Companies additionally crave biologic screening with urine analysis.
Do you anticipate mining companies are advantageous abundant absorption to the bloom and assurance of their miners?
I can alone allege to the two companies that I’ve formed for and so far yes they affliction about bloom and assurance of their assignment force. Occupational Bloom & Assurance is big business aural the mining industry. Back bodies get aching that costs the aggregation money. Prevention is the best medicine.
Do you anticipate underground miners get paid their worth?
I can’t complain. Mining has provided me with a actual adequate lifestyle. If you accept a absolute attitude, and a alertness to apprentice you’ll alpha out authoritative acceptable money. Over time you can access added skills, get active off on added pieces of equipment, assurance up for the casual anniversary of overtime to awning bodies on vacation and become a added able employee. Again you’ll be authoritative abundant money.
Any final thoughts?
Always accept a Snickers bar handy. (Thanks Piper!)
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