Signal Mechanics

Signal mechanics, or signal and track switch repairers, are railroad employees who install, repair, and maintain the signals, signal equipment, and gate crossings that are part of the traffic control and communications systems along railroad tracks. They keep both electrical and mechanical components of signaling devices in good operating order by routinely inspecting and testing lights, circuits and wiring, crossing gates, and detection devices. There are approximately 7,960 signal and track switch repairers employed in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Signal and Track Switch Repairers, Signal Maintainers
Duties Install, repair, and maintain railroad signal equipment
Salary Range $25,000 to $75,000
Work Environment Primarily Outdoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country
Minimum Education Level
  • High School Diploma
  • Some Postsecondary Training
  • Apprenticeship
School Subjects
  • Computer Science
  • Mathematics
  • Technical/Shop
Experience Apprenticeship
Personality Traits
  • Conventional
  • Hands On
  • Technical
  • Math
  • Mechanical/Manual Dexterity
Certification or Licensing None
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook Decline
Career Ladder
  • Signal Shop Foreman, or Signal Inspector, or Gang Foreman
  • Signal Maintainer
  • Signal Mechanic
  • Assistant Signal Mechanic
  • Helper

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