Railroad Conductors and Yardmasters

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Also known as:
Freight Conductor, Passenger Car Conductor, Train Conductor, Yard Conductor

SNAPSHOT
Coordinate activities of switch-engine crew within railroad yard, industrial plant, or similar location. Conductors coordinate activities of train crew on passenger or freight trains. Yardmasters review train schedules and switching orders and coordinate activities of workers engaged in railroad traffic operations, such as the makeup or breakup of trains and yard switching.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
HIGH
Level of responsibilities
HIGH
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
HIGH
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Competition for this position
LOW
Communication with others
HIGH
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
LOW
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
HIGH
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
Daily tasks

Document and prepare reports of accidents, unscheduled stops, or delays.

Arrange for the removal of defective cars from trains at stations or stops.

Direct engineers to move cars to fit planned train configurations, combining or separating cars to make up or break up trains.

Receive instructions from dispatchers regarding trains' routes, timetables, and cargoes.

Receive information regarding train or rail problems from dispatchers or from electronic monitoring devices.

Confer with engineers regarding train routes, timetables, and cargoes, and to discuss alternative routes when there are rail defects or obstructions.

Inspect each car periodically during runs.

Verify accuracy of timekeeping instruments with engineers to ensure trains depart on time.

Confirm routes and destination information for freight cars.

Keep records of the contents and destination of each train car, and make sure that cars are added or removed at proper points on routes.

Signal engineers to begin train runs, stop trains, or change speed, using telecommunications equipment or hand signals.

MAIN ACTIVITIES
Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Performing General Physical Activities Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
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.
Handling and Moving Objects Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE
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.
Transportation Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
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.
Law and Government Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
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.
Telecommunications Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
TOP SKILLS
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
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.
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.
Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.