Shortlines vs Class 1

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Shortlines vs Class 1

Postby JCB » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:19 pm

This is not about which one is better, but which one hires more frequently.

I first started out putting applications in for many Shortline RR's for like a year and not one ever emailed me back or called me for an assessment or interview. So I decided to try the Class 1's.

Back in April I put an app for NS and a few week later I took my assessment and was invited to a hiring sessions. I drove to Sheffield, Alabama from southeast, MO. It's 4 hrs away from me. I didn't get hired, but it was informational and helped me to see what they look for at least.

Then I got an interview with Canadian Pacific for Kansas City recently and so far haven't heard anything, but I did get an email basically saying they're still going through the process, I may or may not get hired.

I have an interview with BNSF next Tuesday which I hope I actually get because it's only a few hours from me in Centrailia, IL

Anyway, it seems either in the shortlines either people never quit or they're just picky, or the Class 1's juts have a high turnover, or just need people. Either way in my experience even though I'm not hired yet that the Shortlines are harder to get on than Class 1's.
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Re: Shortlines vs Class 1

Postby Engineer Spike » Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:56 am

The two classes of railroads are all together different. A shortline might be more easy paced. You might even be asked to learn more than one task. Monday you might hammer some spikes. Tuesday, you might run a freight, while on Wednesday, you might repair a car, or do maintenance on a locomotive. You will likely be home every night, unless you work for a large regional like Montana Rail Link, or Pan Am/Guilford.

On a class 1, you have a job which you bid. There is very little crossing crafts. The environment is much more demanding, and high paced. Your seniority is what determines what assignment you can hold.

In the end, pay vs. lifestyle make the real distinction. Class 1 pay is much higher. Many make 6 figure incomes. They are also on the road constantly, unless a yard or local job can be held. Shortline pay is much less, as most are marginal lines to start with. The trade off is the relaxed pace.
Engineer Spike
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