I am sure you would have heard from a long lost friend or second cousin, about the amazing opportunity available in the mining industry where you can walk into a dump truck mining job with no experience and walk away with a $100,000 annual paycheck.
It definitely sounds too good to be true (and most of the times it is), so read on and see what it takes, whether there is job openings and what the pay is like to drive a massive dump truck for one of the big mines.
What It Takes To Become A Truck Driver In The Mines
Before we look into the dollar signs (which is what I know is what everyone wants to know!), let’s take a look at the job requirements on a typical dump truck driver position.
The following is an excerpt taken from a job listing by Skilled.com.au:
Dump Truck Operator
SKILLED are seeking EXPERIENCED Dump Truck Operators for FIFO (2/1 ex-Perth) positions in the Geraldton region. Rates apply depending on experience to this position and all equipment on site is in brand new condition, as this is a new site.
Successful candidates MUST HAVE demonstrated experience in operating a combination of the following types of plant machinery;
Dump Trucks: Komatsu 785 or Cat 777 or above
Selection Criteria include:
Current HR drivers licence
Willingness to operate all types of equipment as required (including haul & water trucks)
Able to pass a comprehensive pre-employment medical including DAS screen
Demonstrated track record of working safely
Willingness to work night & day shifts
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander applicants are encouraged to apply.
“Please be aware these positions are FI/FO from Perth only, any interstate applicants must be willing to travel to Perth at their own cost and time.”
This seems to be consistent with a lot of the current dump truck job listings, and a few key points to take from this listing is their requirements:
Every Company Seems To Require Some Form Of Experience
Unless you have some sweet connections within the industry, chances are that you will not be able to just walk into a dump truck position with no experience. Now I know it seems like a bit ‘chicken or egg’, but there are a couple of ways to gain experience.
Dump Truck Training Courses
There are plenty of training courses where experienced trainers will teach you how to drive these massive rigs. These courses range from 2 days to a week in length and costs range from about $1,500 to $5,000.
This is a hefty investment, but you walk away with a RIIMPO311A – Conduct Haul Truck Operations certification and puts you a step ahead of the other entry level applicants.
Work Experience With A Smaller Company
Another option, which may be slightly harder, is to approach smaller mining companies (or companies in other industries) which use the same vehicles as see if you can get some work experience with them. While this may seem like something that people still in school would do, if you can get a couple of weeks of experience under your belt, you will put yourself is a great level as an unskilled applicant.
Must Have MR/HR Licence
While an MR/HR licenses are not necessary for all positions, what it does is give your employer a lot more to work with. It shows initiative and proves that you are serious about your application.
FIFO Positions To Closest Capital City Only
Most mining positions are FIFO jobs and while we would all love to stay in our current location and have the mining companies fly us to OUR closest capital city, the truth is that you will most likely need to pack up and move your family to the capital city closest to the mine itself.
Where Are There Dump Truck Mining Jobs?
Now we know the typical criteria (and you are still with us), let’s take a look at where the jobs are!
Now there is mining happening in every state and Territory of Australia, so let’s take a closer look at the major mining sites of each area.
WA is the mining capital of Australia and home to the Superpit as well as other mines in the following areas:
For more information, visit the Department Of Mines & Petroleum WA.
QLD is also a very resource orientated state, and it has mines in the following ares:
- Mount Isa
- Moranbah (2hrs out from Mackay)
For more information, visit the Department Of Mines & Energy QLD.
- Tennants Creek
- Grove Peninsula
- Moranbah (2hrs out from Mackay)
For a more comprehensive list of mines, visit the NT Department of Resources list of major producing mines.
New South Wales
- Hanging Rock
For more information, visit the NSW Mineral Council.
- Olympic Dam
- Prominent Hill
- Latrobe Valley
- Off Gippsland Coast (Oil & Gas)
How Much Can A Truck Driver In The Mine Make?
Based on information gathered from current dump truck positions advertised on the internet it seems that the average salary and conditions are as follows:
Your salary will be based on the level of experience that you hold as well as the roster that you are working.
8/6 or 7/7 FIFO Roster
The majority of these job listings are working to a FIFO roster or 8 days on and 6 days at home, or 7 on and 7 at home. This makes your annual salary look a lot better when you realise that you are basically getting every second week off.
Food & Accommodation Included
While on base, during the working part of your roster, your employer will most likely cover your accommodation and food expenses.
Please Note: The above information should be seen as a guide only. Job listings vary from job to job, so be sure to check the listing thoroughly before applying.
Well that gives you a basic overview of what is involved in applying for dump truck mining jobs and what you can expect from your employment.