Machine Operatior- Tamper Operator

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Published date: November 21, 2020 4:20 am

Location: Laredo, Texas, United States

This position will work as part of the section gang to lay, repair, and maintain track for standard or narrow-gauge railroad equipment used in regular railroad service or in plant yards, quarries, sand and gravel pits, and mines. This work includes using ballast cleaning machine operators and railroad bed tamping machine operators.


18 years of age or older.
High School diploma or GED required
Must possess a valid state-issued driver’s license
Available to work system-wide, extended and frequent travel required
Able to work in a team environment, and possess verbal and written communication skills sufficient to coordinate work and relate track conditions to co-workers, typically via telephone and radio.
Manual labor experience in an outdoor environment required.
Prior railroad experience preferred
Must have requisite color vision acuity
Able to use hands to perform activities involving holding, grasping, turning and pulling.
Able to work in conditions that include loud noise and fumes, work on and around heavy and moving machinery, bend, lift, work, walk, stand and sit in confined spaces for extended periods of time and use hand and power tools.
Follow safety policies and procedures and wear the required personal protective equipment required for the job in a safe manner.


Repair or adjust track switches, using wrenches and replacement parts.
Cut rails to specified lengths, using rail saws.
Operate track-wrench machines to tighten or loosen bolts at joints that hold ends of rails together.
Lubricate machines, change oil, or fill hydraulic reservoirs to specified levels.
Clean or make minor repairs to machines or equipment.
Drill holes through rails, tie plates, or fishplates for insertion of bolts or spikes, using power drills.
Raise rails, using hydraulic jacks, to allow for tie removal and replacement.
Clean, grade, or level ballast on railroad tracks.
Clean tracks or clear ice or snow from tracks or switch boxes.
Operate single- or multiple-head spike pullers to pull old spikes from ties.
Engage mechanisms that lay tracks or rails to specified gauges.
Grind ends of new or worn rails to attain smooth joints, using portable grinders.
Patrol assigned track sections so that damaged or broken track can be located and reported.
Operate single- or multiple-head spike driving machines to drive spikes into ties and secure rails.
Dress and reshape worn or damaged railroad switch points or frogs, using portable power grinders.
Adjust controls of machines that spread, shape, raise, level, or align track, according to specifications.
Observe leveling indicator arms to verify levelness and alignment of tracks.
Drive graders, tamping machines, brooms, or ballast spreading machines to redistribute gravel or ballast between rails.
Drive vehicles that automatically move and lay tracks or rails over sections of track to be constructed, repaired, or maintained.
Push controls to close grasping devices on track or rail sections so that they can be raised or moved.
Turn wheels of machines, using lever controls, to adjust guidelines for track alignments or grades, following specifications.
String and attach wire-guidelines machine to rails so that tracks or rails can be aligned or leveled.
Spray ties, fishplates, or joints with oil to protect them from weathering.
Operate tie-adzing machines to cut ties and permit insertion of fishplates that hold rails.
Paint railroad signs, such as speed limits or gate-crossing warnings.
Available to work a 40 hour work week subject to overtime, on-call and alternate shifts that may include weeknights, weekends and holidays.

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