What's involved

Lightning conductor engineers install a variety of lightning protection and earthing installations. They are carefully designed to direct the energy from lightning away from a building or structure so no damage is caused.

They also carry out repairs, maintenance and renovation work at high levels; working on industrial chimneys, power station cooling towers, church spires, castles, high-rise buildings and bridges.

Lightning conductor engineers reach high work areas using access ladders and scaffolding, mobile work platforms (cradles), traditional Bosun's seats (harnesses) and industrial ropes (abseiling). Once the job is completed, they dismantle the equipment and rigging then return it all to ground level.

Skills required

Not surprisingly, the most important attributes for a lightning conductor engineer are a head for heights, a good sense of balance and a good level of fitness. Practical skills for using tools and equipment are also very important.

You'll be working outside in all weathers and you need to follow strict safe working practices. Excellent organisational and team working skills will also help.

Qualifications required

There are no formal requirements although it would help to have Maths and English Standard Grades.

Salary ranges

(This is a guide to the average salary a fully qualified and experienced person might expect to get.)

£17,000 - £35,000

Progression routes

If you decide to progress into supervisory, design or management roles there are opportunities to study for:

  • Technical, supervisory and  management SVQ qualifications (SCQF Levels 6 to11)
  • HNC Construction or a number of other built environment HNC/HND qualifications (SCQF Levels 7 or 8)
  • Degree level qualifications in a number of construction disciplines (SCQF Levels 9 to 12)