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Bridge and Lock Tender

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What is a Bridge and Lock Tender?

Example of Bridge & Lock Tender Job Operate and tend bridges, canal locks, and lighthouses to permit marine passage on inland waterways, near shores, and at danger points in waterway passages. May supervise such operations. Includes drawbridge operators, lock operators, and slip bridge operators.

Bridge & Lock Tender Responsibilities

  • Clean and lubricate equipment, and make minor repairs and adjustments.
  • Observe approaching vessels to determine size and speed, and listen for whistle signals indicating desire to pass.
  • Direct movements of vessels in locks or bridge areas, using signals, telecommunication equipment, or loudspeakers.
  • Maintain and guard stations in bridges to check waterways for boat traffic.
  • Operate lighthouses to assist marine passage near shores and dangerous waters.
  • Check that bridges are clear of vehicles and pedestrians prior to opening.

Qualities of a Bridge & Lock Tender

These are the skills Bridge and Lock Tenders say are the most useful in their careers:

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.

  • Draw Operator
  • Lock Keeper
  • Bridge Leverman
  • Bridge Operator, Slip
  • Bridge Opener

Job Outlook for Bridge and Lock Tenders

In the United States, there were 3,700 jobs for Bridge and Lock Tender in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 2.7% which is below the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 100 new jobs for Bridge and Lock Tender by 2026. There will be an estimated 400 positions for Bridge & Lock Tender per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Bridge and Lock Tenders in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Bridge & Lock Tender are Oregon, Kentucky, and Florida. Watch out if you plan on working in West Virginia, Washington, or Texas. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Bridge & Lock Tender Salary

The average yearly salary of a Bridge & Lock Tender ranges between $24,490 and $63,620.

Salary Ranges for Bridge and Lock Tenders

Bridge and Lock Tenders who work in Minnesota, Illinois, or Iowa, make the highest salaries.

How much do Bridge and Lock Tenders make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Arkansas $48,410
California $51,520
Florida $34,090
Illinois $62,830
Indiana $54,410
Iowa $55,230
Kentucky $51,470
Louisiana $34,420
Maryland $43,420
Massachusetts $53,430
Michigan $43,560
Minnesota $59,860
Mississippi $43,070
Missouri $55,960
New Jersey $49,880
New York $48,250
Ohio $50,890
Pennsylvania $54,010
South Carolina $46,580
Tennessee $52,410
Texas $35,330
West Virginia $54,680
Wisconsin $49,890

What Tools do Bridge and Lock Tenders Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Bridge and Lock Tenders may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Oracle PeopleSoft
  • SAP software
  • Virtual private networking VPN software

How do I Become a Bridge & Lock Tender?

What education or degrees do I need to become a Bridge and Lock Tender?

Bridge & Lock Tender Degree Level

What work experience do I need to become a Bridge & Lock Tender?

Bridge & Lock Tender Work Experience

Where do Bridge and Lock Tenders Work?

Bridge & Lock Tender Sectors

The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

Bridge & Lock Tender Industries


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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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