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Commercial Diver

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What Does it Take to Be a Commercial Diver?

Job Description & Duties Work below surface of water, using scuba gear to inspect, repair, remove, or install equipment and structures. May use a variety of power and hand tools, such as drills, sledgehammers, torches, and welding equipment. May conduct tests or experiments, rig explosives, or photograph structures or marine life.

Life As a Commercial Diver

  • Drill holes in rock and rig explosives for underwater demolitions.
  • Install pilings or footings for piers or bridges.
  • Supervise or train other divers, including hobby divers.
  • Set up dive sites for recreational instruction.
  • Obtain information about diving tasks and environmental conditions.
  • Set or guide placement of pilings or sandbags to provide support for structures such as docks, bridges, cofferdams, or platforms.

Commercial Diver Skills

These are the skills Commercial Divers say are the most useful in their careers:

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

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.

  • Underwater Welder
  • Aquarium Diver
  • Commercial Diver
  • Tender
  • Non Destructive Testing Under Water Welder (NDT U/W Welder)

Job Outlook for Commercial Divers

In the United States, there were 4,100 jobs for Commercial Diver in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 9.8% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 400 new jobs for Commercial Diver by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 400 job openings in this field each year.


The states with the most job growth for Commercial Diver are Alaska, Missouri, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in Wisconsin, New Jersey, or Alabama. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Commercial Diver

The average yearly salary of a Commercial Diver ranges between $30,810 and $108,170.


Commercial Divers who work in Alaska, New Jersey, or Alabama, make the highest salaries.

How much do Commercial Divers make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $56,410
Alaska $86,600
California $70,540
Connecticut $72,400
Florida $43,700
Indiana $65,860
Louisiana $46,720
Maryland $59,710
Michigan $53,590
Missouri $38,340
New Hampshire $75,500
New Jersey $77,080
New York $68,210
North Carolina $38,430
Ohio $36,270
South Carolina $31,270
Tennessee $41,960
Texas $50,130
Virginia $50,950
Washington $84,480

What Tools & Technology do Commercial Divers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Commercial Divers:

  • Web browser software

How to Become a Commercial Diver

Individuals working as a Commercial Diver have obtained the following education levels:


How many years of work experience do I need?


Where Commercial Divers Are Employed


The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.


You May Also Be Interested In…

Those who work as a Commercial Diver sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:


Image Credit: via CC0 Public Domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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