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Railway Car Technician / Car Mechanic

As a Railway Car Technician/Car Mechanic, you will be responsible for inspecting trains and repairing cars on the tracks or in repair shops. This job is ideal for those who have a mechanical aptitude and enjoy hands-on work.


  • Interpret engineering drawings to plan maintenance jobs
  • Perform calculations and measurements
  • Be knowledgeable about a variety of documents including manufacturers’ manuals, technical bulletins, parts bulletins, service or preventative maintenance manuals, as well as Association of American Railroads (AAR) field manuals and government regulations
  • Fill out work orders such as billing repair cards, wheel reporting cards, inspection records and dangerous goods documentation
  • Work with hand, power, pneumatic and hydraulic tools
  • Use an assortment of complex equipment including shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), oxy-fuel and plasma-arc cutting tools
  • Follow designed methods and procedures for safely servicing and inspecting rail trucks, underframes, brakes, car safety appliances, car bodies, and coaches
  • Be extremely familiar with the rail safety and occupational health and safety legislation in your jurisdiction, as well as Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), sanitation and food safety regulations, and any other applicable acts, codes and regulations

Typical Working Conditions, Hours & Salary:

  • Railways operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. As a Railway Car Technician/Car Mechanic, you will not work a typical nine-to-five shift. You will work irregular hours and must be available to work weekends and holidays.
  • You will work outdoors in all weather conditions.
  • The average yearly salary for this position is $60,000 to $70,000.

Training Requirements & Qualifications:

Railway Car Technicians/Car Mechanics typically complete a multi-year apprenticeship program offered by their railway. Through this program, they learn about railcar components, how to operate car-repair equipment, and the rules for car inspection, maintenance and repair.