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 6,860 signal and track switch repairers employed in th...
Minimum Education Level
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, signal and track switch repairers, a career that includes signal mechanics, had median hourly earnings of $30.69 (amounting to an annual salary of $73,890) in May 2019. Wages ranged from less than $24.80 per hour ($51,580 a year) to more than $45.40 per hour ($94,440 a year). Workers receive extra pay for overtime work.
In addition to regular ea...
Signal department workers do their work outdoors in a variety of weather conditions, sometimes at night. Some workers are regularly scheduled to be on call for emergency repairs.
There is variety in the kinds of signals a mechanic works on, and variety in the location of the work, so the job is rarely boring. In addition, workers in this field can take pride in the importance of their re...
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) predicts that employment for most railroad transportation occupations, including signal mechanics, will decline through 2029. Although demand for rail transportation is decreasing in areas such as bulk commodities and oil and natural gas, intermodal freight shipment have been increasing. The DOL anticipates that most jobs will open as a result of workers who r...