Electricians install and repair electrical wiring and equipment. Most electricians work for building equipment contractors, while others find employment with construction companies, local government agencies and electric power companies, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The hourly pay in West Virginia for electricians varies significantly with location.
Of the estimated 579,150 electricians working in the United States in 2009, about 5,520 were employed in West Virginia, according to the bureau. West Virginia, in fact, ranked near the top for the highest concentration of electricians per capita by state in 2009, second only to Wyoming. The Huntington-Ashland area ranked fourth in the country for electricians per capita by metro area. The bureau does not include self-employed electricians in its salary data and reports that about 9 percent of electricians throughout the country were self-employed as of 2008.
The average pay in West Virginia for an electrician as of May 2009 was $23.24 per hour, or $48,340 per year. This was about 5 percent lower than the nationwide average for this occupation of $24.45 per hour, or $50,850 per year. The middle 50 percent of West Virginia electricians were making $16.08 to $30.24 per hour, or $33,450 to $62,900 per year. The bottom 10 percent had hourly pay rates of $12.68 and lower, and the top 10 percent were earning at least $34.94 per hour, equaling $72,670 and more per year.
The average salary for electricians in two West Virginia metropolitan areas ranked above the nationwide average of $24.45 per hour for this occupation. Electricians in West Virginia were earning the highest average pay in the Wheeling area, at $25.39 per hour, or $52,800 per year, and in Charleston, at $25.09 per hour, or $52,190 per year.
The lowest-paying area for electricians in West Virginia in 2009 was the north central non-metropolitan area, where they were making $21.44 per hour in 2009, or $44,590 per year. The average hourly pay rate for electricians in Morgantown was $22.03, in the Weirton-Steubenville area $22.69, in the Huntington-Ashland area $24.31 and in the Parkersburg area $24.42.