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.

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

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