People everywhere use salt to flavor food, remove ice from walks and driveways, soften water or to help relax in a hot tub. The various types of salt used each day are originally extracted from mineral deposits deep within the earth. Rock salt miners -- or extraction workers -- burrow deep below the ground in man-made mines to mine salts.
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) included miners of all fields in its 2010-11 edition of the Career Guide to Industries. According to the document, miners of all fields -- except gas and oil -- earned an average wage of $22.01 per hour, or $1,017 per week in 2008. Miners of nonmetallic minerals made $23.27 hourly; or $1,140 per week. These figures indicate that salt miners in 2008 could earn anywhere from $52,884 to $59,280 per year, and are consistent with Simply Hired's estimate of $56,000 annually.
Entry-level salt miners often begin as assistants and helpers, performing duties requiring lesser skills such as maintaining equipment and cleaning work areas. In its 2011 salt miner career profile, Careers.org states that a similar -- and lower paying -- occupation in the field was an extraction worker's helper. At the time of publication, the position provided a median annual salary of $28,680; considerably lower than BLS medians.
Simply Hired offered no data specific to miners in the salt industry, but the My Majors career information website provides detailed salary information for both salt and hard-rock miners. According to the resource, in 2011 the average median hourly wage for salt miners was $17.82 and $22.16 for hard-rock miners. These figures indicate annual median salaries between $37,060 and $44,010, which fall just between the statistics related to miners in general and extraction workers' helpers.
When compared globally, U.S. salt miners are some of the highest paid industry professionals in the world. The World Salaries website offers detailed salary information for all types of miners -- salt miners included -- in its 2008 International Comparison of miner salaries. According to the document, the net monthly income for miners in all fields of industry was about $2,694; second only to Australian miners.