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Rail Yard Engineers, Dinkey Operators, and Hostlers

Drive switching or other locomotive or dinkey engines within railroad yard, industrial plant, quarry, construction project, or similar location.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Inspect engines before and after use to ensure proper operation.
    • Spot cars for loading and unloading at customer locations.
    • Perform routine repair and maintenance duties.
    • Drive engines within railroad yards or other establishments to couple, uncouple, or switch railroad cars.
    • Observe and respond to wayside and cab signals, including color light signals, position signals, torpedoes, flags, and hot box detectors.
    • Operate and control dinkey engines to transport and shunt cars at industrial or mine sites.
    • Apply and release hand brakes.
    • Operate flatcars equipped with derricks or railcars to transport personnel or equipment.
    • Signal crew members for movement of engines or trains, using lanterns, hand signals, radios, or telephones.
    • Provide assistance in the installation or repair of rails and ties.
    • Couple and uncouple air hoses and electrical connections between cars.
    • Couple and uncouple air hoses and electrical connections between cars.
    • Read switching instructions and daily car schedules to determine work to be performed, or receive orders from yard conductors.
    • Receive, relay, and act upon instructions and inquiries from train operations and customer service center personnel.
    • Drive locomotives to and from various stations in roundhouses to have locomotives cleaned, serviced, repaired, or supplied.
    • Record numbers of cars available, numbers of cars sent to repair stations, and types of service needed.
    • Provide assistance in aligning drawbars, using available equipment to lift, pull, or push on the drawbars.
    • Observe water levels and oil, air, and steam pressure gauges to ensure proper operation of equipment.
    • Operate switching diesel engines to switch railroad cars, using remote controls.
    • Confer with conductors and other workers via radiotelephones or computers to exchange switching information.
    • Inspect the condition of stationary trains, rolling stock, and equipment.
    • Inspect track for defects such as broken rails and switch malfunctions.
    • Read switching instructions and daily car schedules to determine work to be performed, or receive orders from yard conductors.
    • Operate track switches, derails, automatic switches, and retarders to change routing of train or cars.
    • Record numbers of cars available, numbers of cars sent to repair stations, and types of service needed.
    • Ride on moving cars by holding onto grab irons and standing on ladder steps.
    • Pull knuckles to open them for coupling.
    • Report arrival and departure times, train delays, work order completion, and time on duty.

    Skills

    • Coordination

      Changing what is done based on other people's actions.

    • Monitoring

      Keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements.

    • Time Management

      Managing your time and the time of other people.

    • Installation

      Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs.

    • Negotiation

      Bringing people together to solve differences.

    • Technology Design

      Making equipment and technology useful for customers.

    • Writing

      Writing things for co-workers or customers.

    • Active Learning

      Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.

    • Service Orientation

      Looking for ways to help people.

    • Operations Analysis

      Figuring out what a product or service needs to be able to do.

    • Complex Problem Solving

      Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

    • Instructing

      Teaching people how to do something.

    • Operation and Control

      Using equipment or systems.

    • Management of Material Resources

      Managing equipment and materials.

    • Quality Control Analysis

      Testing how well a product or service works.

    • Repairing

      Repairing machines or systems using the right tools.

    • Systems Analysis

      Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.

    • Persuasion

      Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.

    • Operations Monitoring

      Watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.

    • Social Perceptiveness

      Understanding people's reactions.

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.

    • Critical Thinking

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

    • Reading Comprehension

      Reading work-related information.

    • Active Listening

      Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others.

    • Mathematics

      Using math to solve problems.

    • Learning Strategies

      Using the best training or teaching strategies for learning new things.

    • Systems Evaluation

      Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

    • Equipment Maintenance

      Planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment.

    • Science

      Using scientific rules and strategies to solve problems.

    • Management of Personnel Resources

      Selecting and managing the best workers for a job.

    • Management of Financial Resources

      Making spending decisions and keeping track of what is spent.

    • Programming

      Writing computer programs.

    • Equipment Selection

      Deciding what kind of tools and equipment are needed to do a job.

    • Troubleshooting

      Figuring out what is causing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs to not work.

    WorkKeys®

    Applied Math
    4
    Workplace Documents
    4
    Graphic Literacy
    4

    Abilities

    • Selective Attention

      Paying attention to something without being distracted.

    • Static Strength

      Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying.

    • Rate Control

      Changing when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.

    • Visualization

      Imagining how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

    • Mathematical Reasoning

      Choosing the right type of math to solve a problem.

    • Arm-Hand Steadiness

      Keeping your arm or hand steady.

    • Multilimb Coordination

      Using your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down.

    • Sound Localization

      Noticing the direction that a sound came from.

    • Stamina

      Exercising for a long time without getting out of breath.

    • Speech Recognition

      Recognizing spoken words.

    • Trunk Strength

      Using your lower back and stomach.

    • Originality

      Creating new and original ideas.

    • Finger Dexterity

      Putting together small parts with your fingers.

    • Explosive Strength

      Jumping, sprinting, or throwing something.

    • Time Sharing

      Doing two or more things at the same time.

    • Reaction Time

      Quickly moving your hand, finger, or foot based on a sound, light, picture or other command.

    • Speech Clarity

      Speaking clearly.

    • Auditory Attention

      Paying attention to one sound while there are other distracting sounds.

    • Gross Body Coordination

      Moving your arms, legs, and mid-section together while your whole body is moving.

    • Perceptual Speed

      Quickly comparing groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

    • Deductive Reasoning

      Using rules to solve problems.

    • Information Ordering

      Ordering or arranging things.

    • Manual Dexterity

      Holding or moving items with your hands.

    • Control Precision

      Quickly changing the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

    • Near Vision

      Seeing details up close.

    • Number Facility

      Adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing.

    • Speed of Closure

      Quickly knowing what you are looking at.

    • Visual Color Discrimination

      Noticing the difference between colors, including shades and brightness.

    • Glare Sensitivity

      Seeing something even if there is a glare or very bright light.

    • Night Vision

      Seeing at night or under low light.

    • Hearing Sensitivity

      Telling the difference between sounds.

    • Dynamic Strength

      Exercising for a long time without your muscles getting tired.

    • Far Vision

      Seeing details that are far away.

    • Oral Comprehension

      Listening and understanding what people say.

    • Extent Flexibility

      Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Flexibility of Closure

      Seeing hidden patterns.

    • Category Flexibility

      Grouping things in different ways.

    • Written Expression

      Communicating by writing.

    • Peripheral Vision

      Seeing something to your side when your are looking ahead.

    • Dynamic Flexibility

      Quickly and repeatedly bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Depth Perception

      Deciding which thing is closer or farther away from you, or deciding how far away it is from you.

    • Memorization

      Remembering words, numbers, pictures, or steps.

    • Wrist-Finger Speed

      Making fast, simple, repeated movements of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

    • Gross Body Equilibrium

      Keeping your balance or staying upright.

    • Spatial Orientation

      Knowing where things are around you.

    • Oral Expression

      Communicating by speaking.

    • Response Orientation

      Quickly deciding if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part.

    • Problem Sensitivity

      Noticing when problems happen.

    • Speed of Limb Movement

      Quickly moving your arms and legs.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.

    • Written Comprehension

      Reading and understanding what is written.

    • Fluency of Ideas

      Coming up with lots of ideas.

    Knowledge

    • Philosophy and Theology

      Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

    • Education and Training

      Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    • Therapy and Counseling

      Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

    • Mechanical

      Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Chemistry

      Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

    • Administrative

      Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

    • Engineering and Technology

      Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • Building and Construction

      Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

    • Telecommunications

      Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

    • Fine Arts

      Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    • Medicine and Dentistry

      Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

    • Transportation

      Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

    • Economics and Accounting

      Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

    • Customer and Personal Service

      Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

    • Personnel and Human Resources

      Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

    • Communications and Media

      Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Geography

      Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

    • Sociology and Anthropology

      Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

    • Psychology

      Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

    • Administration and Management

      Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

    • Biology

      Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

    • Foreign Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

    • Physics

      Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub-atomic structures and processes.

    • Food Production

      Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

    • Mathematics

      Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

    • Production and Processing

      Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

    • English Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    • Computers and Electronics

      Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    • Sales and Marketing

      Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    • History and Archeology

      Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

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    Pay

    • Ohio Annual Salary 52930/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 25.45/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 4,300
    • Yearly Projected Openings 400

    Typical Education

    Personality

    Realistic: People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Attention to Detail
    • Dependability
    • Adaptability/Flexibility
    • Cooperation
    • Concern for Others
    • Self Control

    Tools

    • Air hoses
    • Capstan
    • Cold chisels
    • Derricks
    • Diagonal cut pliers
    • Diesel freight locomotives
    • Drum openers
    • Ear plugs
    • Flags or accessories
    • Flares
    • Hammers
    • Hand sprayers
    • Hard hats
    • Heavy rail turnout switch
    • Kerosene or propane or natural gas or butane lantern
    • Oil gauges
    • Personal computers
    • Pressure indicators
    • Punches or nail sets or drifts
    • Rail switching systems
    • Railway rolling stock lifting jack
    • Railway signaling systems
    • Ratchets
    • Safety boots
    • Safety glasses
    • Socket sets
    • Specialty wrenches
    • Temperature gauge
    • Train braking systems
    • Two way radios
    • Utility knives
    • Wheel chocks
    • Winches
    • Wire brushes

    Technology

    • Data base user interface and query software
    • Expert system software
    • Facilities management software
    • Industrial control software
    • Internet browser software
    • Inventory management software

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