Profession train preparer

Train preparers are responsible for checking and testing of equipment and systems on rail vehicles before vehicles are moved. They ensure that a train is in a fit condition to enter service, that the train equipment is correctly deployed and the formation of the train matches the train’s designated pathway. Depending on the individual work organisation of the operator they also perform technical inspections carried out prior to the train entering service.

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Personality Type


  • Principles of mechanical engineering

    Understand principles of mechanical engineering, physics, and materials science.

  • Standards of track geometry

    Have a thorough understanding of the characteristics and requirements of track geometry in terms of horizontal and vertical alignment, in relation to curvature and line speeds.

  • Rail infrastructure

    Thoroughly understand the characteristics of railway infrastructure: rail technologies, track gauges, rail signalling, rail junctions, etc.

  • Characteristics of wheel rail interface

    Thoroughly understand the forces of physics involved in the interaction between the wheels and the rail, possible rail defects, maintenance practices, and cost implications.

  • Hydraulics

    The power transmission systems that use the force of flowing liquids to transmit power.


  • Operate hydraulic jack lift

    Operate hydraulic jack lift or truck to move goods before or after bundling.

  • Maintain inventory of rail track parts

    Ensure the department has sufficient spare track parts in order to execute scheduled track maintenance services.

  • Ensure rail tracks remain clear

    Ensure removal of all obstacles, snow and any other debris from railway tracks, rail switches, etc., to ensure maximum rail safety and functionality.

  • Perform manual work autonomously

    Show the ability to pursue basic manual tasks without the help or assistance of others, not needing supervision or guidance, and taking responsibility for one's actions.

  • Follow given instructions

    Follow instructions to achieve goals and meet deadlines.

  • Ensure quality of final product

    Ensure that finished products meet or exceed company specifications.

  • Detect rail track malfunctions

    Identify and analyse damage or malfunctions in the mechanical, pneumatic, or hydraulic equipment of rail track; determine necessary maintenance and repair work.

  • Write rail defect records

    Compose documents and reports on the nature of rail defects investigated, position of defect in rail, location, etc.

  • Operate scientific measuring equipment

    Operate devices, machinery, and equipment designed for scientific measurement. Scientific equipment consists of specialised measuring instruments refined to facilitate the acquisition of data.

  • Perform rail track inspections

    Plan and implement regular inspections and investigations of the rail track system in order to provide optimal coverage of the railway network in a given area. Inspect aspects such as track alignment, features of the terrain, and existence of ditches, embankments, and loose rock debris on the network.

  • Ensure correct signalling during rail maintenance

    Ensure that the correct flag or signal system is in place during emergencies, maintenance activities, or whenever there is a need to re-route trains or other railroad vehicles.

  • Comply with legal regulations

    Ensure you are properly informed of the legal regulations that govern a specific activity and adhere to its rules, policies and laws.

  • Comply with railway safety standards

    Ensure compliance with minimum safety standards for freight cars operated by railway companies subject to European legislation.

Optional knowledge and skills

ensure maintenance of railway machinery work in a rail transport team train employees

Source: Sisyphus ODB