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Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operator Salary Information

The salary statistics of railroad brake, signal, and switch operators are shown in Table 1. In the next few tables we compare the average salaries of railroad brake, signal, and switch operators within different industry sectors and in the 50 states of the United States. The railroad brake, signal, and switch operators annual salary statistics are from the national compensation survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2014 and published in May 2015 [1].

Table 1. Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operator Salary in the United States

Percentile BracketAverage Annual Salary
90th Percentile Wage
$69,640
75th Percentile Wage
$60,340
50th Percentile Wage
$52,360
25th Percentile Wage
$43,670
10th Percentile Wage
$38,540

Table 1 shows the average annual salary for railroad brake, signal, and switch operators. The average annual salary for the 90th percentile (the top 10 percent of the highest paid) railroad brake, signal, and switch operators is $69,640. The median annual salary (50th percentile) is $52,360. The average annual salary for the bottom 10 percent is $38,540. Take note that in the United States, the annual salary of the 90th percentile (the top 10 percent of the highest paid) is almost 80% higher than that of the bottom 10 percent.

Table 2. Salary Trend

YearAverage Annual SalaryGrowth (%)
2014 $52,360 2.99%
2013 $50,840 -0.97%
2012 $51,340 1.80%
2011 $50,430 5.79%
2010 $47,670 -

Table 2 shows the salary trend for railroad brake, signal, and switch operators from 2010 to 2014. We note that from 2010 to 2014 the average salary has increased by 9.84%. We note that in 2013 the average salary decreased by -0.97%.We also note that the average annual wage had a moderate growth of 1.80% in 2012 and a sizable growth of 5.79% in 2011.

Table 3. Average Salary of Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators vs. Related Jobs

OccupationAverage Wage
Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators
$52,360
Railroad Conductors and Yardmasters
$54,770
Subway and Streetcar Operators
$62,130
Other Rail Transportation Workers
$59,480
Locomotive Engineers and Operators
$53,400
Locomotive Engineers
$54,500
Locomotive Firers
$46,740

Table 4. Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operator Salary by Industry Sector

The average salaries of railroad brake, signal, and switch operators in 4 major industry sectors are shown in Table 4. We note that the salaries vary considerably within different industry sectors. The highest paying industry sector for railroad brake, signal, and switch operators occupations is the federal, state, and local government sector with an annual salary $80,690. The lowest paying sector is the manufacturing sector (annual salary $45,460).

Industry Sector Median Annual Salary
Federal, State, and Local Government
$80,690
Wholesale Trade
$54,410
Transportation and Warehousing
$52,310
Manufacturing
$45,460

Table 5. Median Annual Wage of Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators by States

From the above tables we note that not only railroad brake, signal, and switch operators salaries vary considerably based on one's education and experience, and the industry sectors, they also change considerably from state to state. In the following table we compare the median salary of railroad brake, signal, and switch operators in all 50 states of the United States. We note that the median annual salaries range from $37,260 to $70,600. The highest paying state for railroad brake, signal, and switch operators is New York with a median annual salary of $70,600. The lowest paying state is Kentucky with a median annual salary of $37,260. For more salary information of railroad brake, signal, and switch operators profession in a specific state, use the links in the table.

State Name Median Annual Salary
New York
$70,600
New Jersey
$64,290
Iowa
$59,250
Virginia
$55,640
Arkansas
$55,380
Oregon
$55,320
California
$55,160
Louisiana
$55,160
Illinois
$54,770
Washington
$54,310
Minnesota
$53,620
Arizona
$53,430
Indiana
$53,010
Nebraska
$52,850
Wyoming
$52,780
Michigan
$52,200
Texas
$52,030
Missouri
$51,830
North Carolina
$51,450
Massachusetts
$50,880
Ohio
$50,760
Mississippi
$50,750
Colorado
$49,750
South Carolina
$48,930
Pennsylvania
$48,660
Florida
$47,550
Georgia
$47,440
Kansas
$47,310
Tennessee
$46,840
Oklahoma
$45,250
Utah
$45,150
West Virginia
$44,820
South Dakota
$41,960
Alabama
$38,350
Kentucky
$37,260