Railway Yard and Track Maintenance Workers

(NOC 7531)

in All Trades and Transportation

Railway yard workers regulate yard traffic, couple and uncouple trains and perform related yard activities. Railway track maintenance workers operate machines and equipment to lay, maintain and repair railway tracks. They are employed by railway transport companies.

Job Outlook

Undetermined

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  • Estimate change in employment not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate openings due to growth and retirements not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for this occupation.

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

  • Estimate Decline slightly employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 3400 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate High rate of unemployment in 2016

This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Railway Yard and Track Maintenance Workers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions. Also, a fair portion of the workforce is self-employed, so having the option to "work for yourself" may appeal to some individuals’ interests/motivations.

The median employment income for 44% of Railway Yard and Track Maintenance Workers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

N/A

Minimum

N/A

Median

N/A

Maximum

Annual Pay

N/A

Minimum

$49,980

Median

N/A

Maximum

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

Hourly Pay

$13.00

Minimum

$20.35

Median

$34.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$7,580

Minimum

$37,269

Median

$79,787

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Railway yard workers regulate yard traffic, couple and uncouple trains and perform related yard activities. Railway track maintenance workers operate machines and equipment to lay, maintain and repair railway tracks. They are employed by railway transport companies.

Job duties

Railway yard and track maintenance workers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Operate control panel switches from railway yard tower to set traffic signals and to activate train switches that regulate railway traffic in railway yards.
  • Operate car retarders, turntables and track switches to align locomotives and cars as required for coupling, uncoupling or servicing.
  • Operate machines and equipment to lay, maintain and repair railway tracks, align tracks, transfer, spread, level and tamp ballast around ties and rails and to clear snow from tracks.
  • Switch cars according to instructions which indicate the location, disposition and number of cars.
  • Lubricate moving parts of railway cars and locomotives.
  • Clean and make minor repairs to machines and equipment.
  • Patrol assigned track sections to identify and report damaged or broken track.
  • Perform other track maintenance duties as directed.

Sample job titles

  • control tower operator - railway
  • locomotive attendant - railway yard
  • railway line inspector
  • railway maintenance equipment operator
  • railway signalman/woman
  • railway track repairer
  • yard worker - railway

Skills

To work in these jobs, you should have good health, physical stamina, and strength. Agility, coordination, and a mechanical aptitude would be helpful. You must be able to work methodically, take direction, work as a member of a team, and carry out instructions given by supervisors. On occasion, protective clothing, goggles, and safety boots must be worn. In these jobs, you may be exposed to noise and fumes.

Job requirements

  • Some high school education is usually required.
  • Experience as a railway labourer is required.
  • On the job training is provided
  • Railway yard workers require a Canadian Rail Operating Rules certificate.

Other considerations

Progression to a position such as brakeman is possible with experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

< 50

employed in 2016

88.9%

employed full-time

0.0%

self employed

0.0%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
100%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
54.8

median age

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

57,925

employed in 2016

88.8%

employed full-time

12.7%

self employed

5.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
94.7%
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46.8

median age

Where will I likely work?

40.0%

Northern

40.0%

Cape Breton

20.0%

Halifax

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

Northern

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

83.3%

Transportation and Warehousing

16.7%

Other Industries

What is the age of Employment?

44.4%

45-54

22.2%

25-34

22.2%

55-64

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

34.1%

45-54

33.0%

35-44

18.7%

55-64

13.2%

25-34

Top levels of education

40.0%

High school

$32,244 median annual income
30.0%

College certificate or diploma

$53,333 median annual income
20.0%

Less than high school

$32,375 median annual income
20.0%

Trades certificate

$40,939 median annual income

Compared to: All Trades and Transportation

29.4%

Trades certificate

$40,890 median annual income
25.5%

High school

$28,089 median annual income
22.6%

College certificate or diploma

$39,023 median annual income
18.2%

Less than high school

$25,753 median annual income
2.7%

Bachelor's degree

$36,972 median annual income

Education & training

Adult high school/secondary diploma programs

This program is typically offered at the high school level.

The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning (NSSAL) administers, coordinates, and supports the development and delivery of adult education programs through learning partners in Nova Scotia. Our learning partners include the Nova Scotia Community College, Adult High Schools, Université Sainte-Anne, and community-based learning organizations that offer tuition-free programming across the province. NSSAL offers clear, accessible pathways from adult basic education to a high school credential or GED, empowering Nova Scotians to achieve their learning and employment goals.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Siège Social: 1695, Route 1

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0

(902) 769-2114

Nova Scotia Community College - Adult Learning

PO Box 220

Halifax, NS B3J 2M4

(866) 679-6722

Adult High Schools

Various, NS

Community Learning Organizations

Various, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Railway Association of Canada
99 Bank Street, Suite 901
Ottawa, ON K1P 6B9
Tel: (613) 567-8591
Fax: (613) 567-6726
Transport Canada
45 Alderney Drive, Suite 1475
Dartmouth, NS B2Y 2N6
Tel: (902) 426-6030

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

Job postings

There are currently no job postings for this occupation.