Day in the Life
work under a wide variety of conditions. Most work indoors, usually in
laboratories, and have regular hours. Some occasionally work irregular
hours to monitor experiments that cannot be completed during regular
working hours. Production technicians often work in 8-hour shifts around
the clock. Others, such as agricultural, forest and conservation,
geological and petroleum, and environmental science and protection
technicians, perform much of their work outdoors, sometimes in remote
Advances in automation
and information technology require technicians to operate more
sophisticated laboratory equipment. Science technicians make extensive
use of computers, electronic measuring equipment, and traditional
technicians may be exposed to hazards from equipment, chemicals, or
toxic materials. Chemical technicians sometimes work with toxic
chemicals or radioactive isotopes; nuclear technicians may be exposed to
radiation, and biological technicians sometimes work with
disease-causing organisms or radioactive agents. Forensic science
technicians often are exposed to human body fluids and firearms.
However, these working conditions pose little risk if proper safety
procedures are followed. For forensic science technicians, collecting
evidence from crime scenes can be distressing and unpleasant.
Note: Some resources in this section provided by the US Department
of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.