Signal and Track Switch Repairers

Also called: Communications Maintainer, Electric Track Switch Maintainer, Gate Technician, Light Rail Signal Technician, Rail Signal Designer

Varies

estimated salary

Install, inspect, test, maintain, or repair electric gate crossings, signals, signal equipment, track switches, section lines, or intercommunications systems within a railroad system.

  • Install, inspect, maintain, and repair various railroad service equipment on the road or in the shop, including railroad signal systems.
  • Inspect and test operation, mechanical parts, and circuitry of gate crossings, signals, and signal equipment such as interlocks and hotbox detectors.
  • Inspect switch-controlling mechanisms on trolley wires and in track beds, using hand tools and test equipment.
  • Drive motor vehicles to job sites.
  • Tighten loose bolts, using wrenches, and test circuits and connections by opening and closing gates.
  • Inspect electrical units of railroad grade crossing gates and repair loose bolts and defective electrical connections and parts.
  • Replace defective wiring, broken lenses, or burned-out light bulbs.
  • Record and report information about mileage or track inspected, repairs performed, and equipment requiring replacement.
  • Inspect, maintain, and replace batteries as needed.
  • Lubricate moving parts on gate-crossing mechanisms and swinging signals.
  • Clean lenses of lamps with cloths and solvents.
  • Maintain high tension lines, de-energizing lines for power companies when repairs are requested.
  • Test air lines and air cylinders on pneumatically operated gates.
Work Context

Work Context information for this career will be available soon.

Work Activities
  • Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment — Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
  • Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment — Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
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Detailed Work Activities
  • Inspect mechanical equipment to locate damage, defects, or wear.
  • Maintain work equipment or machinery.
  • Inspect equipment to locate or identify electrical problems.
  • Test electrical circuits or components for proper functioning.
  • Inspect mechanical equipment to locate damage, defects, or wear.
  • Drive trucks or other vehicles to or at work sites.
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Knowledge

Computers and Electronics
  • Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Mechanical
  • Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Public Safety and Security
  • Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
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Skills

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.
Quality Control Analysis
  • Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Repairing
  • Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
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Abilities

Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Finger Dexterity
  • The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
Manual Dexterity
  • The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Multilimb Coordination
  • The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
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Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Persistence
  • Initiative
  • Leadership
  • Cooperation
  • Concern for Others
  • Social Orientation
  • Self Control
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Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Spreadsheet software
  • Microsoft Excel Hot Technology
Office suite software
  • Microsoft Office Hot Technology
Electronic mail software
  • Microsoft Outlook Hot Technology
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