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Roof Bolters, Mining

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What You Need to Know About Mining Roof Bolters

Career Description Operate machinery to install roof support bolts in underground mine.

Life as a Mining Roof Bolter: What Do They Do?

  • Perform tests to determine if methane gas is present.
  • Install various types of bolts including truss, glue, and resin bolts, traversing entire ceiling spans.
  • Perform safety checks on equipment before operating.
  • Drill test holes and test bolts for specified tension, using torque wrenches.
  • Position safety jacks to support underground mine roofs until bolts can be installed.
  • Pull down loose rock that cannot be supported.

What a Mining Roof Bolter Should Know

When polled, Mining Roof Bolters say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Troubleshooting: Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

  • Bolt Machine Operator
  • Underground Miner
  • Underground Mine Superintendent
  • Underground Mining Section Foreman
  • Roof Bolter Operator

Mining Roof Bolter Employment Estimates

There were about 3,700 jobs for Roof Bolters, Mining in 2016 (in the United States).

Mining Roof Bolter jobs are decreasing by a rate of -5.2%. This means the total job opportunities are shrinking. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a loss of -200 jobs for Mining Roof Bolters by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 400 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Mining Roof Bolters in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Roof Bolters, Mining are Idaho, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania.

Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, Illinois, or Alabama. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Mining Roof Bolter Average Salary

The typical yearly salary for Roof Bolters, Mining is somewhere between $43,330 and $77,690. A Mining Roof Bolter median salary is $58,650.

Salary Ranges for Mining Roof Bolters

How much do Roof Bolters, Mining make in each U.S. state?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary





West Virginia








Tools & Technologies Used by Mining Roof Bolters

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Mining Roof Bolters:

  • Caterpillar Cat MineStar System
  • Data entry software

How to Become a Mining Roof Bolter

Are there Mining Roof Bolter education requirements?

Mining Roof Bolter Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Mining Roof Bolter Work Experience

Where Mining Roof Bolters Work

Mining Roof Bolter Sectors

You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming Mining Roof Bolters might also be interested in the following careers:

  • Continuous Mining Machine Operators
  • Adhesive Bonding Machine Operators and Tenders


Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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