Structural iron and steel workers install iron or steel beams, girders, and columns to form buildings, bridges, and other structures. They are commonly referred to as ironworkers.
Ironworkers perform physically demanding and dangerous work, often working at great heights. As a result, workers must wear safety harnesses to reduce the risk of falling.
Although most structural iron and steel workers learn through an apprenticeship, some learn on the job. Certifications in welding and rigging can be helpful.
The median annual wage for structural iron and steel workers was $46,140 in May 2012.
Employment of ironworkers is projected to grow 22 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. The need to rehabilitate, maintain, and replace an increasing number of older roads and bridges is expected to drive employment growth, as will the ongoing construction of large projects, such as high-rise buildings. Job opportunities should be best in metropolitan areas, where most large construction projects take place.
Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of structural iron and steel workers with similar occupations.
Learn more about structural iron and steel workers by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.