The Future of Rail Jobs
Because transporting freight by rail is so much cheaper than transporting by truck, many companies are starting to switch over their transportation funds to railway lines rather than to trucking companies.
This is especially true when transporting bulk cargo such as coal, steel or iron ore. Trains can transport many thousands of tons of material with the same amount of diesel fuel that would transport only a few truckloads of the same freight. Because rail transport is more environmentally-friendly, governments are encouraging companies who do a lot of truck transporting of their goods to consider the benefits of rail transport.
With many workers in the industry set to retire soon, the number of positions that will be opening up for new workers is expected to rise over the next few years. As freight volume increases, many rail lines will be adding new trains to their lines and needing more people to fill the necessary positions.
Locomotive engineers, conductors, signalmen and freight car repairers are just a few of the positions that will be in demand over the next decade.
As the population of many cities continues to grow, the demand for more streetcar, subway and passenger train employees will also increase. Many older employees will be getting ready to retire leaving the way open for newer employees to fill their places.
If the industry is of interest to you, and you’re still in college, then look for railroad scholarships such as that offered by the American Association of Railroad Superintendents.
As with many other industries, entry-level positions will always be in demand such as brake operators and conductor-trainees. Those employees willing to work for extended periods of time, will find it easier to fill positions working onboard long-distance trains. As intermodal transportation systems continue to expand, so too will the number of positions needed to apply these methods of transport on the railways.
As companies look for more and more ways to cut transportation costs, the advantages of rail transport will outweigh any other means of product transportation. This will help to ensure that railway workers are always in demand.