Knowledge base

Rigger Job and Risk Profile

What does a rigger do?

Riggers' jobs

Riggers are employed to assemble, install, position and secure temporary construction rigging such as cables, cranes, ropes, pulleys and winches to lift, lower and position heavy objects and equipment. They are responsible for making decisions on the most effective equipment and methods to get a job done safely and efficiently.

Riggers work on construction sites across Queensland and their workplaces vary from office buildings and hospitals to schools and mining sites in both urban and rural areas.

Average rigger salary & prospects

Riggers generally have to hold a high school diploma and are required to complete a traineeship and entry-level qualifications to start their careers. Two in five riggers hold a Certificate III/IV.

They must also hold licences required by the state that they work in, as well as training in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines. In Queensland, there are three levels of rigging licences: basic, intermediate and advanced.


Estimating a rigger's salary

Construction rigger salaries vary between $40,000 to $100,000 per year depending on skills and experience, with salary increasing with experience. The average weekly full-time earnings for riggers before tax is $1,517, which is above the national average. (Job Outlook, 2018)


Currently, there are over 29,000 riggers employed across the country, 17.8% of which are working in Queensland, and the Australian Government predicts that there will be very strong growth in the industry.

Rigger unions and industry organisations

Common injuries and risks for riggers

Shoulder workplace injuries suffered by riggers

Rigging is considered a high-risk occupation, and despite workers being highly trained in safety, construction sites are dangerous places where accidents and injuries do happen.

Long-term injuries:

Risks for riggers:

  • Lifting of heavy equipment
  • Working on uneven ground
  • Dangerous equipment

Rigger safety in Australia

Warning cone and safety workplace practices for riggers

Despite significant legislation and regulations in place, the construction industry as a whole has been identified as having one of the highest number of workplace injury, TPD and fatality claims.

Safe Work Australia is working to reduce the number of serious incidents by 30% by 2022 through a number of nationwide initiatives.

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Last update on:
September 10, 2020
Disclaimer: This information is designed for general information in relation to Queensland compensation law. It does not constitute legal advice. We strongly recommend you seek legal advice in regards to your specific situation. For expert advice call 1800 266 801 or chat via live chat to arrange free initial advice with our Principal lawyer, Greg Smith.

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