Railroad Track Safety Training

Find out how you can find the top schools to get training and take classes to become a track safety professional.

Track Safety Training

In 1980, the railroads were deregulated, and there are now more trains operating on fewer tracks across the country. Workers are needed to keep the more than 150,000 miles of track in the United States, along with the structures and trackside signals, in safe, operating condition.

Track Safety workers should have a high school diploma or equivalent. Coursework in science and mathematics is helpful, as are shop classes. Track safety workers include signal maintainers, track laborers, and structure maintenance workers.

Signal maintainers test and repair trackside indicators, crossing gates and other traffic control devices. Track laborers repair and replace rail ties, track and ballast. Structure maintenance includes repair of structures such as bridges, tunnels and trestles.

While all railroads must conform to the safety regulations set forth by the Federal Railroad Administration, some signals are railroad-specific. Most railroads will provide on-the-jobs and, if available, classroom training to new employees because of this.

Track Safety Schools and Prgorams

Offsite training in track safety is available through the University of Tennessee Center for Transportation Research in Knoxville, Tennessee. The National Academy of Railroad Sciences in Overland Park, Kansas offers training courses for signalmen and welders. Some vocational-technical schools also offer railroad-specific training, although any engineering and welding courses are helpful.

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