Mine Cutting and Channeling Machine Operators

Architecture & Construction > Construction

Projected Growth: Little or no change

Projected Job Openings

Some Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Operate machinery such as longwall shears, plows, and cutting machines to cut or channel along the face or seams of coal mines, stone quarries, or other mining surfaces to facilitate blasting, separating, or removing minerals or materials from mines or from the Earth’s surface. Includes shale planers.

Common job titles of Mine Cutting and Channeling Machine Operators include:

Experience and Education

Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

  • 60.32% said they needed a High School Diploma.

  • 27.39% said they needed a Less than a High School Diploma.


    Cut entries between rooms and haulage ways.

    Move controls to start and position drill cutters or torches and advance tools into mines or quarry faces to complete horizontal or vertical cuts.

    Cut slots along working faces of coal, salt, or other non-metal deposits to facilitate blasting, by moving levers to start the machine, and to control the vertical reciprocating drills.

    Advance plow blades through coal strata by remote control, according to electronic or radio signals from the tailer.

    Signal crew members to adjust the speed of equipment to the rate of installation of roof supports, and to adjust the speed of conveyors to the volume of coal.

    Signal that machine plow blades are properly positioned, using electronic buzzers or two-way radios.

    Replace worn or broken tools and machine bits and parts, using wrenches, pry bars, and other hand tools, and lubricate machines, using grease guns.

    Observe indicator lights and gauges, and listen to machine operation to detect binding or stoppage of tools or other equipment problems.

    Reposition machines and move controls to make additional holes or cuts.

    Position jacks, timbers, or roof supports, and install casings, to prevent cave-ins.

    Press buttons to activate conveyor belts, and push or pull chain handles to regulate conveyor movement so that material can be moved or loaded into dinkey cars or dump trucks.

    Drive mobile, truck-mounted, or track-mounted drilling or cutting machine in mines and quarries or on construction sites.

    Move planer levers to control and adjust the movement of equipment, the speed, height, and depth of cuts, and to rotate swivel cutting booms.

    Remove debris such as loose shale from channels and planer travel areas.

    Determine locations, boundaries, and depths of holes or channels to be cut.

    Monitor movement of shale along conveyors from hoppers to trucks or railcars.

    Signal truck drivers to position their vehicles for receiving shale from planer hoppers.

    Cut and move shale from open pits.

    Free jams in planer hoppers, using metal pinch bars.

    Charge and set off explosives in blasting holes.

    Guide and assist crews in laying track for machines and resetting planer rails, supports, and blocking, using jacks, shovels, sledges, picks, and pinch bars.


Ultrasonic anemometers

Tunneling machines

Tractor drills

Shuttle cars


Screw jacks

Scissor bolters

All Tools

Rock drilling machines


Raise bores

Pry bars

Protective goggles

Protective ear muffs

Power shovels

Portable hand grinders

Pinch bars

Personal computers

Mobile radios

Mining shovels

Mining picks

Mining bulldozers

Miner’s helmets

Mine conveyor belts

Methane monitors

Lube guns

Longwall shears

Jaw crushing equipment


Integrated air velocity monitors

Hydraulic jacks

Heavy dump trucks

Grinding mills

Electric chainsaws

Detonation units

Cutting torches

Cutting machines


Continuous miners

Cone crushing equipment

Channeling machines

Burning bars

Atmospheric monitors

Armored face conveyors

Adjustable combination wrenches


Joy Mining Machinery JOY FACEBOSS

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Analysis of Longwall Pillar Stability ALPS

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Analysis of Roof Bolt Systems ARBS


Operation Monitoring

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

Critical Thinking

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

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Operation and Control

Controlling operations of equipment or systems.


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


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.


Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Equipment Maintenance

Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.


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


Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Quality Control Analysis

Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.


Quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.

Control Movement Abilities › Psychomotor Abilities › Control Precision

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Occupation Sections


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