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747400sp
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"What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:55 am

What kind of license do you need to use to drive a locomotive, and what are the steps to this license? I know to drive a truck or bus, you need a CDL.
 
B747-4U3
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:33 am

Not sure about the US, but in the UK you would need a license for Rules & Procedures for the railway that you are operating on, along with a license specific to the type of train you are working on (to show you are trained on how it works) and another certificate to show that you are familiar with the route that you are driving.
 
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flyingturtle
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 11:25 am

Here, you need a common license to drive any train (except shunting/track maintenance), then a type rating for the specific locomotive (or multiple unit). In the case of the Gotthard route ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gotthardbahn ), there's another qualification you have to pass.

Familiarity with the isn't a qualification - you can achieve it by traveling on the jumpseat or even studying a video of the route. There are also books with diagrams showing maximal speed, altitudes, names of stations and bridges you're passing, length of tunnels, gradients and so on - of every route.

For shunting and track maintenance, there are certificates that require a much shorter training. The training is even shorter if your company has access to railway tracks - you'll get a training in order to put loaded (or emptied) railway coaches on a side track where the railway company can pick up your coaches. Duuh, this isn't the real thing. I know.  Smile

[Edited 2012-01-21 03:29:17]
Reading accident reports is what calms me down
 
rfields5421
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 12:36 pm

In the US it is not a 'license' but an individual certification process - which has to be repeated every 2 to 3 years depending upon type of operation.

A couple references

http://www.ble-t.org/info/engineer.asp

Quote:
effective January 1, 1992, the Federal Railroad Administration issued extensive certification and licensing requirements for locomotive engineers. Engineers in the U.S. must be certified pursuant to the provisions of Part 240 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations (49CFR Part 240). Under 49CFR Part 240 each railroad must have in place an FRA approved certification program. An individual railroad's certification program must meet minimum federal safety requirements for the eligibility, training, testing, certification and monitoring of its locomotive engineers.
http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/49cfr240_03.html

Unlike aircraft pilots and truck drivers, railroad engineers do not make long cross country trips into unfamiliar stretches of track.

Locomotive drivers concentrate on a specific section of track/ geographic area.
Not all who wander are lost.
 
TheSonntag
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 1:22 pm

In Europe, each country still has its own requirements, and you cannot drive in another country if you have a license for one country, unless you are especially qualified for the other country.

The reason is that each european country has its own procedures and rules, predating World War 1. Despite numerous agreements and a lot of coordination work, the differences are still huge. Each country has its own signals, safety systems and so on.

In Germany, the usual education takes around 3 years, however,recently, a 10mounth quick course has been introduced. Whether this is smart or not is discussed a lot.
 
EMBQA
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:17 pm

Quoting rfields5421 (Reply 3):
In the US it is not a 'license' but an individual certification process - which has to be repeated every 2 to 3 years depending upon type of operation.

....and it's not something you just decide you want to do and apply for. US railroads are union and they have a job progression path for the job of Engineer and it takes years to finally get selected. You start at the the bottom and work your way up.

[Edited 2012-01-21 09:22:01]
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
 
seattle
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RE: "What License You Need To Drive A Locomotive?

Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:21 pm

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 5):
US railroads are union and they have a job progression path for the job of Engineer and it takes years to finally get selected. You start at the the bottom and work your way up.

Technically yes but starting from the bottom and working my way up took me a total of a month. It all really depends on how despirate the railroads in the U.S. need engineers.

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