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Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators

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What You Need to Know About Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators

Example of a Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Job Lay, repair, and maintain track for standard or narrow-gauge railroad equipment used in regular railroad service or in plant yards, quarries, sand and gravel pits, and mines. Includes ballast cleaning machine operators and railroad bed tamping machine operators.

Life as a Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator: What Do They Do?

  • Clean tracks or clear ice or snow from tracks or switch boxes.
  • Patrol assigned track sections so that damaged or broken track can be located and reported.
  • Operate track-wrench machines to tighten or loosen bolts at joints that hold ends of rails together.
  • Spray ties, fishplates, or joints with oil to protect them from weathering.
  • Observe leveling indicator arms to verify levelness and alignment of tracks.
  • Weld sections of track together, such as switch points and frogs.

Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Needed Skills

Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Troubleshooting: Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.

Equipment Maintenance: Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.

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

Types of Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Jobs

  • Railway Equipment Operator
  • Railroad Track Mechanic
  • Section Hand
  • Track Mechanic
  • Track Man

Job Opportunities for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators

In the United States, there were 14,000 jobs for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators in 2016.

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.6% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 1,200 new jobs for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators by 2026. The BLS estimates 1,500 yearly job openings in this field per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators are Texas, New York, and Florida.

Watch out if you plan on working in Minnesota, Wisconsin, or Kansas. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators

The salary for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators ranges between about $33,970 and $79,900 a year. A Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operator median salary is $56,930.

Salary Ranges for Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators

How much do Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators make in each U.S. state?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Massachusetts

$76,360

New York

$69,080

Wyoming

$65,850

Oregon

$62,680

Maryland

$60,500

Nebraska

$58,960

West Virginia

$58,940

New Jersey

$57,880

Pennsylvania

$57,510

Indiana

$57,100

Illinois

$56,610

Washington

$56,410

Idaho

$55,690

Virginia

$54,980

Montana

$54,390

Colorado

$54,160

New Mexico

$53,290

Michigan

$53,190

Iowa

$52,840

Louisiana

$52,690

Arkansas

$52,660

Georgia

$52,440

Tennessee

$52,060

California

$51,330

Wisconsin

$50,560

Kansas

$50,290

Minnesota

$50,040

Ohio

$49,700

Arizona

$49,670

Vermont

$49,250

North Carolina

$48,800

Texas

$48,590

Missouri

$48,380

South Dakota

$48,320

Utah

$47,820

Florida

$47,060

Kentucky

$45,780

Alabama

$45,170

Maine

$44,460

South Carolina

$39,250

Oklahoma

$37,850

New Hampshire

$36,180

What Tools & Technology do Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators may use on a daily basis:

  • Data entry software
  • Microsoft Excel

How do I Become a Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator?

Are there Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operator education requirements?

Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Work Experience

Where do Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators Work?

Rail-Track Laying & Maintenance Equipment Operator Sectors

Those thinking about becoming Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operators might also be interested in the following careers:

  • Painters, Construction and Maintenance
  • Gas Compressor and Gas Pumping Station Operators

Career changers with experience as a Rail-Track Laying and Maintenance Equipment Operator sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

  • First-Line Supervisors of Agricultural Crop and Horticultural Workers
  • Light Truck or Delivery Services Drivers
  • Mine Cutting and Channeling Machine Operators

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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