Track Maintainer

Operator, Rail Track Maintainer, Railroad Track Mechanic, Track Foreman, Track Inspector, Track Laborer  

Track maintainers patrol assigned track sections so that damaged or broken track can be located and reported. They clean tracks or clear ice or snow from tracks or switch boxes. They repair or adjust track switches, using wrenches and replacement parts, and lubricate machines, change oil, and fill hydraulic reservoirs to specified levels. They also dress and reshape worn or damaged railroad switch points or frogs, using portable power grinders.

Positions require an understanding of policies, regulations, and procedures related to rail track maintenance. Previous supervisory experience is preferred. Good communication, computer, budgeting, record-keeping, problem-solving, and investigative skills are required, as is the ability to manage multiple teams in remote locations.

Track maintainers must be able to lift 100 pounds with a co-worker and 80 pounds alone, as well as guide heavy items by crane. The job involves frequent walking and standing. Track maintainers are exposed to weather elements, as well as noise, dirt, dust, grease, chemicals and fumes. As a safety sensitive position, track maintainers are subject to random drug and alcohol testing. Track maintainers must be able to work all shifts.

Employers generally require a high school diploma or a general educational development (GED) certificate, and prefer individuals with a driver's license, manual trades training, and welding certification. Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. Many industry employers provide on-the-job training, but click on the "get qualified" tab above to see additional resources for job preparation and training.

More Details
Job Growth and Wages
Percent Job Growth:  
9% - Average
Typical Wages (National):  
Annual: $41,740 - $61,920    Hourly: $20 - $30

Note:  There may be opportunities for overtime work and overtime pay in this occupation.

Physical/Medical/Health Requirements

- Physical ability to do manual labor
- Ability to lift heavy objects
- Ability to work in all weather
- Ability to handle exposure to dust, dirt, wetness, and other difficult conditions
- Ability to drive and to travel to multiple locations

Legal Requirements
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(Data Drawn from O*NET)

Career Snapshot

Typical Education:

High School or GED (HS)
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Percent Job Growth:

9% - Average
Find Jobs

Typical Wages:

Annual: $41,740 - $61,920

Hourly: $20 - $30