Lays, repairs, and maintains 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.
This career is part of the Transportation, Distribution and Logistics cluster Facility and Mobile Equipment Maintenance pathway.
A person in this career:
- Patrols assigned track sections so that damaged or broken track can be located and reported.
- Repairs or adjusts track switches, using wrenches and replacement parts.
- Welds sections of track together, such as switch points and frogs.
- Observes leveling indicator arms to verify levelness and alignment of tracks.
- Operates single- or multiple-head spike driving machines to drive spikes into ties and secure rails.
- Operates track wrenches to tighten or loosen bolts at joints that hold ends of rails together.
- Cuts rails to specified lengths, using rail saws.
- Lubricates machines, changes oil, or fills hydraulic reservoirs to specified levels.
- Drills holes through rails, tie plates, or fishplates for insertion of bolts or spikes, using power drills.
- Cleans tracks or clears ice or snow from tracks or switch boxes.