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Occupations

Genealogy

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Home > Family Histories > Occupations & Trades > Cleaner (Wax Departments)

Cleaner - Wax Departments

Cleaners were employed in a number of different departments involved in the processing and manufacture of paraffin wax at the oil refinery. These departments included wax extraction, scale treatment and the wax filtration plant.

Many paraffin process workers suffered from skin disorders as a result of working in clothes saturated with oils and waxes. Upper arms and ankles inevitably became heavily soiled, resulting in skin infections, growths and cancers. Scrotal and facial cancers were also reported, often with fatal consequences.

Wages & Working Hours

In 1958, an Agreement Between the Scottish Shale Oil Companies and the National Union of Shale Miners & Oil Workers records that cleaners working in the paraffin wax departments earned 28s 9d per shift. Day workers worked an average of 44 hours per week (5 days one week and 5.5 days the next week). Three shift or double shift workers worked a 6 day week of 48 hours.

 

 

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