Yard Engineer

Drive switching locomotives within yard of railroad or similar location.
picture of Yard Engineer

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$26,000 – $56,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Yard Engineers do?

Drives switching locomotive within yard of railroad, industrial plant, quarry, construction project, or similar location to switch railroad cars for loading, unloading, and makeup or breakup of trains: Reads switching orders received from CONDUCTOR, YARD. Observes traffic signals in yard or in cab and operates locomotive in accordance with railroad rules and regulations. Observes arm or lantern signals from YARD COUPLER or SWITCH TENDER and moves controls to drive locomotive backwards or forwards to switch and couple cars. May assist in cleaning and lubricating engine. May talk to CONDUCTOR, YARD or other yard workers via radio-telephone to give or receive switching information. May be designated according to type of locomotive driven as Locomotive Engineer, Gasoline. May operate switching diesel engine and be designated Engineer, Remote Control, Diesel. When employed by establishment other than railroad to operate switching locomotive at industrial plant, quarry, construction project, or similar location, may be designated Industrial-Locomotive Operator.


Should I be a Yard Engineer?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Outside the Box Thinker: Your creative brainpower gets a workout as you come up with innovative ideas.
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.

  • Also known as: Diesel Dinkey Engineer, Dinkey Engineer, Dinkey Locomotive Engineer, Engineer, Remote Control, Diesel, Engine Pilot See More

    How to become a Yard Engineer

    Yard Engineers often have an Associate's degree or higher. Chart?chd=s:9ocaaa&chl=no+college+%2879%25%29|certificate+%2819%25%29|associate%27s+%283%25%29|||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,79,79
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