Workers in railroad occupations ensure that passenger and freight trains run on time and travel safely. Some workers drive trains, some coordinate the activities of the trains, and others operate signals and switches in the rail yard.
Nearly all locomotive engineers; conductors and yardmasters; and brake, signal, and switch operators work in the rail transportation industry. Rail yard engineers work in rail transportation and also support activities for rail.
Railroad workers generally require a high school diploma and several months of on-the-job training.
The median annual wage for railroad workers was $55,180 in May 2015.
Employment of railroad workers is projected to decline 3 percent from 2014 to 2024. Although demand for rail transportation may grow, an increase in productivity may hold back employment growth in rail occupations.
Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for railroad workers.
Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of railroad workers with similar occupations.
Learn more about railroad workers by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.