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Career and Education Opportunities for Riggers in Portland, Maine

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for riggers in the Portland, Maine area. About 240 people are currently employed as riggers in Maine. By 2016, this is expected to shrink by 12% to 210 people employed. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for riggers are expected to grow by about 0.3%. In general, riggers set up or repair rigging for construction projects, manufacturing plants, logging yards, ships and shipyards, or for the entertainment industry.

Income for riggers is about $19 hourly or $40,160 annually on average in Maine. Nationally, their income is about $19 hourly or $41,130 yearly. Riggers earn more than people working in the category of Specialized Equipment generally in Maine and more than people in the Specialized Equipment category nationally.

There are twenty-three schools of higher education in the Portland area, including one within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can get a degree to start your career as a rigger. The most common level of education for riggers is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time training to become a rigger if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Rigger

Rigger video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, riggers set up or repair rigging for construction projects, manufacturing plants, logging yards, ships and shipyards, or for the entertainment industry.

Riggers decide on gear such as cables and winches, in line with load weights and sizes and work schedules. They also attach loads to rigging to furnish support or ready them for moving, using hand and power tools. Equally important, riggers have to tilt and turn suspended loads to maneuver over and/or around obstacles, using multi-point suspension techniques. They are often called upon to control movement of heavy equipment through narrow openings or confined spaces, using chainfalls and other equipment. They are expected to test rigging to insure safety and reliability. Finally, riggers manipulate rigging lines and pulling gear to move or support materials such as heavy equipment or theatrical sets.

Every day, riggers are expected to be able to visualize how things come together and can be organized. They need to evaluate problems as they arise. It is also important that they judge how far and close objects are from one another and themselves.

It is important for riggers to align and anchor machinery. They are often called upon to fabricate and repair rigging, supporting structures and pulling gear, using hand and power tools. They also clean and dress machine surfaces and component parts. Somewhat less frequently, riggers are also expected to attach loads to rigging to furnish support or ready them for moving, using hand and power tools.

They also have to be able to set up ground rigging for yarding lines, attaching chokers to logs and then to the lines And finally, they sometimes have to tilt and turn suspended loads to maneuver over and/or around obstacles, using multi-point suspension techniques.

Like many other jobs, riggers must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:

  • Vending Machine Mechanic. Install, service, or repair coin, vending, or amusement machines including video games, juke boxes, or slot machines.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Rigger Training

Southern Maine Community College - South Portland, ME

Southern Maine Community College, 2 Fort Road, South Portland, ME 04106-1698. Southern Maine Community College is a medium sized college located in South Portland, Maine. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 5,654 students and an admission rate of 68%. Southern Maine Community College has a one to two year program in Construction/Heavy Equipment/Earthmoving Equipment Operation which graduated one student in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Portland, Maine

Portland, Maine
Portland, Maine photo by Pauk

Portland is situated in Cumberland County, Maine. It has a population of over 62,561, which has shrunk by 2.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 102, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $164,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were built in Portland, down from thirty-two the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 19 minutes. More than 36.4% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Portland is 6.3%, which is less than Maine's average of 7.6%. About 14.1% of Portland's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.

The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.4%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Mariners Church, Swedenborgian Church and Stroudwater Christian Church are among the churches located in Portland. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church.

Portland is home to the Cumberland Wharf and the Browns Wharf as well as Longfellow Square and Hadlock Field. Shopping centers in the area include Mill Creek Shopping Center, Monument Square Shopping Center and Portland East Shopping Center. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Fairfield Inn Portland Airport and Ramada Limited Portland for temporary stays in the area.