How To Blow Things Up For A Living

While it is certainly a broad generalization to characterize all males as beings who, from boyhood to adulthood, enjoy blowing things up, it also isn’t far off the mark. As a gender, boys tend to gravitate towards activities that possess elements of fun, danger and excitement. And few activities encapsulate these three factors more completely than the act of combustion. Heck, the fireworks alone are why many American boys rank the 4th of July as a favorite holiday second only to Christmas.

But as boys grow up, oftentimes the daredevil streak and fascination with semi-controlled destruction takes a backseat to real-world issues like starting a family and career. But who’s to say the grown-up boys of the world can’t earn their daily bread practicing the not-so-refined art of explosive demolition? In fact, there is a career aptly titled “explosives technician” that is tailor made for all those who would like to blow things up for a living.

Here’s how to get started.

Understand the nature of the job
A number of industries require the services of explosive technicians and these include the military, construction sites, fire and police departments, mining and a host of other sectors. Therefore, it is crucial for the aspiring explosives expert to have a good idea where he or she would eventually like to practice their trade (i.e. making things go “boom”).

It’s also important to know exactly what the job entails, as this too will vary from industry to industry. Explosive techs in the construction or demolition field often detonate charges in order to clear an area; those who work for law enforcement usually find themselves working on bomb squads; and those in a mining operation deploy explosives in a strategic areas in order to facilitate the miners’ needs. The one thing all explosive techs have in common is that their job description involves hands-on work with high explosives.

Complete the education
The education requirements needed to begin a career as an explosives technician vary from position to position. For example, those in the military will find that nothing more than a high-school diploma is needed and training is provided free of charge. However, those who want to work in construction and demolition are usually required to earn a bachelor’s degree in construction or engineering.

Perform a thorough “gut check”
This can’t be stressed enough. A career as an explosives technician is high stress, to say the least, and not kind to those with weak nerves. Not only that, but being successful involves equal parts mental toughness, physical toughness and strong analytical skills, as math and science are part of the job. Few people possess each of these three traits in equal measure, so its important for those interested in heading down this road to take inventory of their overall disposition.

Although the life of an explosives tech is rife with stress and hazard, it is doable. Not only that, but those naturally suited to the job end up thriving. In fact, according to iSeek, a career resource site, this field is projected grow 1.6% annually through 2016. And, on average, explosive techs earn 23$ an hour. Not bad for blowing stuff up for a living.

Michael Cornett writes for Rhino Demo, an industrial demoliton company that serves the Southeast parts of the U.S.
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