Railcar Repair (Journeyman) Job Description

by Writing Team on March 18, 2010

Most people who work as a person who do railcar repair are often called a Journeyman. They are responsible for the repair and maintenance of railcars.

Primary Objectives:

  • The main concern for a Journeyman is to check out the railcars and make sure that they are in good operating condition.
  • The next objective that a Journeyman has is to do constant maintenance on railcars so that they operate efficiently.
  • The main objective for a Journeyman is to make sure that the railcars are repaired in accordance with the qualifications of FRA.

The Journeyman must comply with safety procedures, including wearing all appropriate PPE. The Journeyman performs railcar inspections and repairs to FRA and AAR guidelines and customer requirements. The Journeyman knows how to perform S-486 single car air test with automatic tester. The Journeyman must be aware of how to use all the proper testing equipment so that he can test railcars. When the Journeyman (railcar repairer) has finished doing his repairs he must submit an AAR billing. The Journeyman maintains an inventory of material and parts that are needed to do maintenance on the railcars.

The Journeyman must know how to safely operate service trucks, telescopic forklift, car jacks and mobile cranes. This is the type of equipment necessary to perform necessary maintenance and repair work. Preventative maintenance and repair of equipment should be done by the direction of the Operations Supervisor and in accordance with the company maintenance schedule by the Journeyman. The Journeyman must follow company and applicable railroad policies and procedures when he is performing his duties. There are restrictions that help prevent any accidents while the Journeyman is repairing the railcars. The Journeyman must create all required reports accurately and in a timely manner.

The Journeyman must maintain good communications with customers knowing what is needed and explaining to them what type of repairs should be done. The maintenance of railcars is done on a continuous basis so the Journeyman has to work constantly on general maintenance. There is some Journeyman who specializes in maintenance work only while others specialize in the initial repair. The Journeyman must be capable of utilizing computer programs such as Lotus Notes, Microsoft Excel and Word. The Journeyman must also be capable of training others to do the work and since railcars may break down in various places the Journeyman must be able to travel to different locations to work. In a lot of repair situations the Journeyman works with others who are Journeyman or those who wish to be trained as railcar repairers so they usually do training in different locations. Each different railcar may have a different type of problem so the Journeyman must continue to develop railcar repair knowledge and experience in accordance with the AAR/FRA and company guidelines.

The Journeyman or railcar repairer must have a high school diploma or equivalent. The Journeyman must be a team player and possess or be able to secure Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). Most railroad companies want their Journeyman to have at least five years experience in railcar repair work. They must be certified in welding to AWSD15.1 welder. The Journeyman must be able to enter AAR billing. The Journeyman must be able to utilize AAR gages and work independently without too much supervision. A Journeyman must have excellent customer service and communication skills. Most Journeymen have good organizational and paperwork skills. Their work requires them to be detailed oriented not only with their paperwork but with their repairing skills. They need to be proficient at Microsoft Excel and Word programs in order to complete their paperwork.

The Journeyman is faced with some environmental conditions that might affect his work. They are exposed on a regular basis to outdoor weather conditions. Often a Journeyman is exposed to dust from various grains, fertilizer and minerals. The Journeyman is exposed to elements created by welding and torch cutting instruments. The Journeyman< must be able to lift up to 50 lbs with reasonable accommodations. The Journeyman must be able to climb in and out of large trucks. The Journeyman often needs to climb ladders on a railcar. He must be capable of doing this kind of work in all weather conditions knowing that he will often have to work on uneven surfaces. In some cases he may he need to walk across the top of the railcar while it is still moving. The work can become very dangerous if he is not very careful.

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