Dock Worker


Work Tasks

DOCKWORKERS load and unload ship cargo by hand or machine under the direction of stevedores. They carry or move freight, stock, and other materials and cargo to the pier or wharf. Dockworkers stack the cargo in transit sheds or in the holds of ships using pallets or cargo boards. In addition, dockworkers shore up the cargo in the ship's hold to prevent shifting during voyage. Dockworkers operate hoist and winch equipment that lifts cargo on and off the ship, and forklifts that move cargo to and from loading and storage areas. Dockworkers also tie up lines of incoming ships.

Salary, Size & Growth

Entry Requirements

DOCKWORKERS require no work experience or specific training. Some employers prefer applicants with a high school diploma, but most simply require workers to be at least 18 years old and physically able to perform the work. Dockworkers generally learn skills informally, on the job from more experienced workers or supervisors. No special licensing or certification is required for dockworkers. Some jobs require union membership.