Alabama Department of Labor

Labor Market Information Division
SOC: 51-8091 Chemical Plant and System Operators
Control or operate an entire chemical process or system of machines.
Education: These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
OJT: Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Tasks: Move control settings to make necessary adjustments on equipment units affecting speeds of chemical reactions, quality, or yields. Monitor recording instruments, flowmeters, panel lights, or other indicators and listen for warning signals, to verify conformity of process conditions. Control or operate chemical processes or systems of machines, using panelboards, control boards, or semi-automatic equipment. Record operating data, such as process conditions, test results, or instrument readings. Confer with technical and supervisory personnel to report or resolve conditions affecting safety, efficiency, or product quality. Draw samples of products and conduct quality control tests to monitor processing and to ensure that standards are met. Regulate or shut down equipment during emergency situations, as directed by supervisory personnel. Start pumps to wash and rinse reactor vessels, to exhaust gases or vapors, to regulate the flow of oil, steam, air, or perfume to towers, or to add products to converter or blending vessels. Interpret chemical reactions visible through sight glasses or on television monitors and review laboratory test reports for process adjustments. Patrol work areas to ensure that solutions in tanks or troughs are not in danger of overflowing. Notify maintenance, stationary-engineering, or other auxiliary personnel to correct equipment malfunctions or to adjust power, steam, water, or air supplies. Inspect operating units, such as towers, soap-spray storage tanks, scrubbers, collectors, or driers to ensure that all are functioning and to maintain maximum efficiency. Direct workers engaged in operating machinery that regulates the flow of materials and products. Turn valves to regulate flow of products or byproducts through agitator tanks, storage drums, or neutralizer tanks. Calculate material requirements or yields according to formulas. Gauge tank levels, using calibrated rods. Repair or replace damaged equipment.
License: License not required.
Outlook: poor
Alabama Employment Outlook
Alabama Wage Data
Hourly Wage   Annual Wage
Entry $27.25   Entry $56,675.00
Mean $33.69   Mean $70,063.00
Experience $36.90 Experience $76,757.00

The data is based on the May 2017 Occupation Employment Survey employment and wage estimate file. The wages have been aged using the most current ECI factors reflecting wages as of June 2018.

Alabama Projections
Estimated Employment 2016Projected Employment 2026Annual Average OpeningsAnnual Growth Rate
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Occupational Videos
51-8091.00 Chemical Plant and System Operators