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Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months!
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scotian Offline
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RE: Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months!
(06-30-2012 10:16 AM)Tubthumper Wrote:  Hi Scotian, thanks for the great thread. I recently finished my degree and am considering moving to Fort Mac to work, and maybe starting a trade. I've worked as a first aid attendant with a BC Occupational First Aid level III ticket (unsure of Alberta equivalent), and I'm wondering if it would be worthwhile to recertify before heading up. I don't want to work specifically as a FA attendant or in safety, but would it help to have a FA ticket if I were applying to labour/ construction jobs?

Also, I'm thinking about getting into heavy equipment operation. Would you recommend taking a HEO course before moving to Fort Mac? I've been looking at this school for articulated rock truck or other courses: but I've also heard some contractors say that they wouldn't hire people out of that sort of program. What are your thoughts? Thanks.

I wouldn`t worry too much about the first-aid course, but two others that are essential are CSTS and H2S, the former being a requirement on all job sites, the latter only on live sites (not new construction).

I think that there`s a pretty good demand for heavy equipment guys although not too sure if they hire guys right out of those type off courses, better of contacting a company directly. Off the top of my head I know of Thompson Bros Construction ( and Bouchier contracting (, tell them you`re thinking about taking this course and ask if its something they`d recommend. This is exactly what I did 6 years ago before I took my pre-employment course. Also, have you looked at courses at Keyano college in Fort Mac? If not, I would suggest doing so because that`s probably the best place to take courses since its right here in the oil sands.

Then there`s the operators union local 955 ( call them and see what they think of the course and how to join the union, I heard there`s a 1000 guys on the waiting list as of last week, so don`t hold your breath on getting in quickly.

I`m not totally sure how a guy gets into heavy equipment operation, but there was a guy in my orientation the other day who got hired on with Thompson Bros and he was a farmer from Ontario and he had never worked construction or in the oil sands but they hired him on because he had experience operating back hoes and excavators.

I`ll ask around and get back to you, I actually have a buddy who got an awesome job as an equipment operator a couple weeks ago, I`m gonna write about that another time because its a pretty interesting story.

Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things.
07-01-2012 12:00 AM
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RE: Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months! - scotian - 07-01-2012 12:00 AM
Risks, opportunities, import/export - OSL - 03-16-2013, 06:58 AM