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Salary Survey Analysis
CompGeo Salary Survey Benchmark Job Summary and Competencies
Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
The Benchmark Job Description below represents the specific Position Characteristics of the job used in the Salary Survey. Benchmark Job Descriptions should be inspected carefully to review the degree of matching between an organizations' Job and the Salary Survey Benchmark. Matching internal Jobs to Salary Survey Benchmark Jobs should not be done on Job Title alone. A thorough comparison of Salary Survey Benchmark to Internal Job Descriptions is recommended. A good overlap should exist on any comparisons used on critical Job Dimensions and Competencies.
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Summary Job Description Tasks
Operate railroad track switches. Couple or uncouple rolling stock to make up or break up trains. Signal engineers by hand or flagging. May inspect couplings, air hoses, journal boxes, and hand brakes. Signal locomotive engineers to start or stop trains when coupling or uncoupling cars, using hand signals, lanterns, or radio communication.
 
Pull or push track switches to reroute cars.
 
Observe signals from other crewmembers so that work activities can be coordinated.
 
Inspect couplings, air hoses, journal boxes, and handbrakes to ensure that they are securely fastened and functioning properly.
 
Raise levers to couple and uncouple cars for makeup and breakup of trains.
 
Receive oral or written instructions from yardmasters or yard conductors indicating track assignments and cars to be switched.
 
Climb ladders to tops of cars to set brakes.
 
Set flares, flags, lanterns, or torpedoes in front and at rear of trains during emergency stops in order to warn oncoming trains.
 
Inspect tracks, cars, and engines for defects and to determine service needs, sending engines and cars for repairs as necessary.
 
Make minor repairs to couplings, air hoses, and journal boxes, using hand tools.
 
Connect air hoses to cars, using wrenches.
 
Operate and drive locomotives, diesel switch engines, dinkey engines, flatcars, and railcars in train yards and at industrial sites.
 
Refuel and lubricate engines.
 
Watch for and relay traffic signals to start and stop cars during shunting.
 
Monitor oil, air, and steam pressure gauges, and make sure water levels are adequate.
 
Ride atop cars that have been shunted, and turn handwheels to control speeds or stop cars at specified positions.
 
Adjust controls to regulate air-conditioning, heating, and lighting on trains for comfort of passengers.
 
Record numbers of cars available, numbers of cars sent to repair stations, and types of service needed.
 
Provide passengers with assistance entering and exiting trains.
 
Answer questions from passengers concerning train rules, stations, and timetable information.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Important Knowledge Competencies Competency Description
Transportation Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
 
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
 
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.
 
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
 
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
 
Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
 
Administration and Management Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Important Skill Competencies Competency Description
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.
 
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
 
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
 
Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
 
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
 
Operation and Control Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
 
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
 
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
 
Time Management Managing one's own time and the time of others.
 
Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
 
Troubleshooting Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
 
Quality Control Analysis Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
 
Writing Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
 
Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
 
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Important Ability Competencies Competency Description
Far Vision The ability to see details at a distance.
 
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.
 
Control Precision The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
 
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.
 
Near Vision The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
 
Auditory Attention The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
 
Oral Comprehension The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
 
Perceptual Speed The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
 
Reaction Time The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
 
Trunk Strength The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
 
Gross Body Coordination The ability to coordinate the movement of your arms, legs, and torso together when the whole body is in motion.
 
Visualization The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
 
Selective Attention The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
 
Arm-Hand Steadiness The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
 
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.
 
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.
 
Static Strength The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
 
Extent Flexibility The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
 
Gross Body Equilibrium The ability to keep or regain your body balance or stay upright when in an unstable position.
 
Visual Color Discrimination The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
 
Depth Perception The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
 
Speech Recognition The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
 
Written Comprehension The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
 
Oral Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
 
Deductive Reasoning The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
 
Inductive Reasoning The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
 
Information Ordering The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
 
Flexibility of Closure The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
 
Hearing Sensitivity The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
 
Speech Clarity The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
 
Time Sharing The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).
 
Rate Control The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
 
Written Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
 
Category Flexibility The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
 
Spatial Orientation The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or to know where other objects are in relation to you.
 
Response Orientation The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
 
Stamina The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Prerequisite Qualification Category Education and Experience Level
Required Level of Education High School Diploma (or GED or High School Equivalence Certificate)
 
Related Work Experience None
 
On-the-Job Training Over 3 months, up to and including 6 months
 
On-Site or In-Plant Training Up to and including 1 month
 
On-the-Job Training Over 1 month, up to and including 3 months
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
Alternate Job Title(s)
Air Brake Operator
Air Hose Coupler
Brake Holder
Brake Rider
Brakeman
Car Coupler
Car Hopper
Car Rider
Car Runner
Car Shifter
Car Shunter
Carman
Conductor
Coupler
Dinkey Brakeman
Dukey Rider
Engineer
Enginehouse Brakeman
Flagger
Flagman
Freight Brake Operator
Freight Brakeman
Freight Conductor
Gang Rider
Headman
Lineman Apprentice
Locomotive Engineer
Locomotive Operator Helper
Locomotive Switch Operator
Motor Brakeman
Narrow Gauge Brakeman
Nipper
Passenger Brakeman
Passenger Train Braker
Patcher
Railcar Brake Operator
Railroad Brake Operator
Railroad Brakeman
Railroad Signal Operator
Railroad Signal and Switch Operator
Railroad Switchman
Railroad Yard Worker
Railway Switch Operator
Railway Switchman
Rider
Road Freight Brake Coupler
Rope Rider
Set Rider
Skates Operator
Skatesman
Snapper
Swamper
Switch Coupler
Switch Foreman
Switch Operator
Switch Tender
Switching Operator
Switchman
Terminal Carman
Track Helper
Track Supervisor
Trailer
Train Brake Operator
Train Brakeman
Train Braker
Train Crew Member
Trainman
Trains Service Conductor
Transportation Specialist
Trip Rider
Tub Rider
Yard Brakeman
Yard Coupler
Yard Person
Yard Switch Operator
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Transportation
Job Family: Railroad
Benchmark Title: Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
 
 
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