Although the duty of train conductors varies with the kind of train they are conducting, they all have a great responsibility in the ship, let’s digress a little while before looking into how to be a train conductor.
Let us consider the stages of the revolution of the railway transportation means.
Wooden Rail Era
The record has it that the use of Wagonways with wooden rails and horse-drawn traffic traces back to the 1550s where they were employed in transporting ore tubes to the mine and from the mine.
The wagonways happen to be the oldest of rails ever invented. As of the time it was used for mining, the miners called the wagons Hunde (“dogs”), this was because of the noise they produced on the tracks.
As time went on, the wagonways became popular in Europe such that Georgius Agricola gave an illustration of it in his 1556 work De re Metallica. A lot of references to wagonways has been made in central Europe in the 16th century.
Metal Rails Era
This era followed immediately after the wooden era. This era began in the 1760s when the Coalbrookdale Company began to fix plates of cast iron to the upper surface of wooden rails, which increased their durability and load-bearing ability.
Initially, only balloon loops could be used to turn agons, however, movable points were introduced that allowed passing loops to be created. A replica of a “Little Eaton Tramway” wagon, the tracks are plateways.
William Jessop in 1789 introduced an iron-like edge rail and flanged wheels for an extension to the Charnwood Forest Canal at Nanpantan, Loughborough, Leicshire. He then began to manufacture edge-rails with Outram his partner in 1970.
The Lake Lock Rail Road was the first public edgeway / first public railway built-in 1796. Although the primary purpose of the line was to carry coal, it also carried passengers.
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Steam Power Era
James Watt employee William Murdoch produced a working model of a self-propelled steam carriage in 1784. After invention, steam power continued to be the dominant power system in railways around the world for more than a century.
The first public railway which used only steam locomotives, all the time, was Liverpool and Manchester Railway, built-in 1830.
Electric Power Era
The first-ever electric locomotive was built by a chemist named Robert Davidson of Aberdeen in Scotland in the year 1837, and it was powered by galvanic cells (batteries), and it was equally the earliest battery electric locomotive.
The diesel power era followed next after which came the high speed rail and finally the hydrogen power era.
Things to Know About Trains
- The North won the American Civil War with the help of trains in September 1863, Enabling Abraham Lincoln to send 20,000 crucially needed replacement troops more than 1,200 miles from Washington, D.C. to Georgia (in just 11 days) to fortify Union forces.
- The ‘horsepower‘ which is in use today started as a mere tool Watt came up with to help him market his product. He needed the compare the efficacy of his product with how much power it would take a horse working in a mill to produce.
- Train trips were the first worlds’ travel agencies and the railroads also provided standardized time zones.
- In 1916, the miles of railroad track in the United States reached its peak. Also, the bullet trains of today can top 300 mph.
- The assassination of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination helped publicize train travel.
Responsibilities of A Train Conductor
A train conductor has various responsibilities on the train not withstanding the type of train in question. Nevertheless, the duties of a train conductor is toyally dependent on the kind of train. below are the general duties of a train conductor.
- Conduct a pre-check on the train prior to departure
- Communicate with station personnel in regard to schedules, cargo lists, or changes
- Observe tracks for route signals and potential obstructions
- Follow laws, regulations, and established procedures at all times
- Assist passengers as needed throughout the duration of transport
- Alert passengers of upcoming stops
- Follow all aspects of the train’s operations such as orders, signals, laws, and rules in accordance with the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) regulations
- Oversee the safety, comfort, and orderly transport of all passengers
- Check passenger tickets and ensure they’re on the right train
- Take payments from passengers boarding the train
- Review and adhere to instructions from dispatchers and yardmasters
- Relay important travel and safety information to all crew members
How Much are Train Conductors Paid?
The salaries earned by train conductors varies with location. However, in the United States, a conductor is likely to make an average salary of $52,432 per year.
Also, salaries range from $14,000 to $130,000 with regard to the region and individual company involved. Train conductors usually work 40 hours a week. while cargo and passenger trains run at all hours, requiring evening, night, weekend, and holiday shifts.
How To Become A Train Conductor
Your desire to be a train conductor should not just end as a wish, you can work things out. If you are ready, you should pay keen attention to this part of the article.
Just like other jobs, there are requirements you must meet to be given a chance to be a train conductor, some of such requirements include;
- A high school diploma; you must have earned a high school diploma first.
- Certification as a train conductor; You should further enroll and as well, pass a certification course to be a train conductor.
- Submission of an application to an entry-level position; is the next step to take.
- Finally, gain the required licenses for further advancement
Additionally, there are skills you should have for an addded advantage in your journy to be becoming a train ocnductor, these skills are very importnant and shiuld not be underestimated. They include;
- Time management; being able to manage time is non-negotiable.
- Communication; you will be dealing with total strangers on board, communication skills will help you on the journey.
- Mechanics and operations
- Good health; You must have sound health.
- Customer service