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Diesel Electrician

Our Diesel Electricians play an important part in keeping our locomotives on the move. Almost every system on the locomotive is a complex electrical system.

As a Diesel Electrician, you will be troubleshooting our fleet of more than 7,700 locomotives. (To put that in perspective, America's largest airline has fewer than a thousand airplanes.) You will inspect, repair and maintain the electrical parts of our diesel electric locomotives. You will use blueprints, schematics and location circuit plans. You will get to use tools and equipment you won’t find in any other shop or on any construction site.


  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • You must speak and read English because you'll be asked to follow posted bulletins, regulations, rule books, timetables, switch lists, etc.
  • You must provide verifiable work or education experience in electronics, control systems, AC/DC motors or a current journeyman's electrical card.
  • You must be able to read electrical schematics and prints.
  • Experience troubleshooting electronic control systems is required, and experience working with large motor generators and high-voltage circuitry is preferred.
  • You will have to pass a Skilled-Craft Battery test (see sample) to be considered for an interview.


  • Bailey Yard (North Platte, NE)
  • Hinkle Locomotive Facility (Hinkle, OR)
  • Davis Yard (Roseville, CA)
  • Jenks Shop (North Little Rock, AR)


As a newly hired Diesel Electrician, you can expect to earn about $27.37 an hour, with actual pay depending on Union-negotiated agreements. Apprentice Diesel Electricians can expect to earn about $17.90 an hour, with actual pay depending on location and Union-negotiated agreements.


In your first few months as a Diesel Electrician, you will receive safety training, and you will begin to learn about locomotive electrical systems and maintenance. Over the course of your first year, you will get more in-depth training in specific electrical systems. Your training will continue as your job changes and as the railroad adopts new technology.

As an Apprentice Diesel Electrician, you will receive formal classroom and hands-on training as part of a three-year apprenticeship. You will learn primarily by performing specific tasks under the guidance of a journeyperson.

Potential Career Path:

Diesel Electrician Career Path

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