Pipeline Technician

Help install and maintain underground water, gas, and sewer pipes.

What does a Pipeline Technician do?

Water, gas, and oil often move from place to place through pipes. Those pipes are usually located deep beneath the ground, where they’re not easy to see and maintain. However, this doesn’t mean they don’t need maintenance, as broken pipes can leak both fluids and profits. The job of a Pipeline Technician is to inspect, maintain, and repair those pipelines.

As a Pipeline Technician, you spend a significant amount of time inspecting your pipeline system. You perform tests to determine how much material is flowing through the pipes, which can help you identify leaks. You also conduct pressure tests to make sure the pipes aren’t clogged or blocked.

You may perform periodic visual inspections, where you walk along a length of pipe. Because of all this inspecting, you’ll grow to love those pipes, thinking of them as your children.

Once in a while, you may receive frantic phone calls reporting a leaking pipe. If you work as a Pipeline Technician for a natural gas company, these calls will cause a big spike in your heart rate, as leaking natural gas can be a fire hazard. You drive to the leaking pipe and shut off valves to divert the flow. You may repair the pipe yourself, or call in Contractors.

If you do use Contractors, you supervise their work and make sure it’s done properly. When the repairs are complete, you turn the flow back on.

In general, you’re a stickler for safety. This may be part of your personality, but it’s also part of your job. You’re responsible for ensuring that your company follows state, local, and environmental laws, and that the materials you’re carrying in your pipes don’t spill into the environment.