Observe train signals along routes and verify their meanings for engineers.
Monitor trains as they go around curves to detect dragging equipment and smoking journal boxes.
Receive signals from workers in rear of train and relay that information to engineers.
Observe tracks from left sides of locomotives to detect obstructions on tracks.
Operate locomotives in emergency situations.
Inspect locomotives to detect damaged or worn parts.
Signal other workers to set brakes and to throw track switches when switching cars from trains to way stations.
Check to see that trains are equipped with supplies such as fuel, water, and sand.
Monitor oil, temperature, and pressure gauges on dashboards to determine if engines are operating safely and efficiently.
Start diesel engines to warm engines before runs.