Best or Worst Job: Oil Rig Worker

Best or Worst Job: Oil Rig Worker

An online list ranked an oil field worker as one of the worst jobs in the country. Big 2's Paula Cuadrado went on site to a rig to see what workers thought.
The Permian Basin is filled with job opportunities and many of them are in the oil and gas industry.

A survey of best and worst jobs in the country ranked some positions in the oil and gas industry near the top and another near the bottom.'s list of 200 jobs ranked Petroleum Engineers as the 28th best job in the country. A geologist is ranked 30th best. 

The survey considered factors such as income, work environment, stress and hiring outlook. 

Near the end of the list, marking the "worst" jobs is an oil field worker at number 196 out of 200.

Employees on CanElson's Drilling Rig #33 disagree.

"I don't believe it," said Boogie Hatcher a floor hand with CanElson. "I like this job. There's not too many jobs you can have 14 days off in a row."

Garrett Bryson has been with CanElson for about a year. He admits the job isn't for everyone, but he likes it.

"It's definitely a messy job, for sure. You get paid enough for it though," Bryson said.

The oil and gas industry is the leading factor in incredibly low unemployment rates in the Permian Basin.

In Midland, the unemployment rate is 3.1%. It's 3.6% in Odessa.

Compare that with the unemployment rate statewide, which is 6.0%. Nationally, 7.3% of people seeking work are unemployed. 

To put that in perspective, Willie Taylor of the Permian Basin Workforce Board says this is definitely a job-seekers market.

"Most economist say that 5.0% is full employment. That's saying that everybody here, skilled or unskilled, that really wants to go to work can go to work here in this community," said Taylor.

"We're just truly blessed to be in an economy like this here that's mostly driven by the oil and gas industry," Taylor said. 

"We know we're making a difference," said Jared Blong with the International Association of Drilling Contractors. "It's not sexy. It's quite dirty, but some of the dirties jobs are the best jobs in America."  

To view the complete list of Best and Worst jobs from CareerCast CLICK HERE.

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