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Industries at a Glance
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Rail Transportation: NAICS 482

About the Rail Transportation subsector

The rail transportation subsector is part of the transportation and warehousing sector.

Industries in the Rail Transportation subsector provide rail transportation of passengers and/or cargo using railroad rolling stock. The railroads in this subsector primarily either operate on networks, with physical facilities, labor force, and equipment spread over an extensive geographic area, or operate over a short distance on a local rail line.

North American Industry Classification System

The rail transportation subsector consists of a single industry group, Rail Transportation: NAICS 4821.

Workforce Statistics

This section provides information relating to employment in rail transportation. These data are obtained from employer or establishment surveys. The following tables present an overview of the industry including the number of jobs, data for occupations common to the industry, and projections of occupational employment change.

Employment

Data series Back
data
Mar.
2021
Apr.
2021
May
2021
Jun.
2021

Employment (in thousands)

Employment, all employees (seasonally adjusted)

142.8 143.2 (p)144.1 (p)144.5

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Employment by Occupation

Data series Employment,
2020

Locomotive engineers

35,690

Rail car repairers

10,130

Rail-track laying and maintenance equipment operators

11,130

Railroad brake, signal, and switch operators

12,740

Railroad conductors and yardmasters

40,220

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics)

Projections

For projected (future) employment estimates, see the National Employment Matrix, which includes employment estimates by industry and occupation for rail transportation.

(Source: Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections)

Earnings

Recent hourly and annual earnings for occupations commonly found in rail transportation.

Earnings by Occupation

Data series Wages, 2020
Hourly Annual
Median Mean Median Mean

Locomotive engineers

34.73 34.09 72,240 70,920

Rail car repairers

29.76 29.33 61,900 61,010

Rail-track laying and maintenance equipment operators

25.27 25.44 52,560 52,900

Railroad brake, signal, and switch operators

28.08 26.82 58,400 55,780

Railroad conductors and yardmasters

31.03 31.69 64,540 65,920

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics)

Work-related Fatalities, Injuries, and Illnesses

This section presents data for the industry on the number of workplace fatalities and the rates of workplace injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time workers in rail transportation. An injury or illness is considered to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing condition.

Data series 2016 2017 2018 2019

Fatalities

Number of fatalities

11 13 17 11

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

Data series 2019

Rate of injury and illness cases per 100 full-time workers

Total recordable cases

2.0

Cases involving days away from work, job restriction, or transfer

1.5

Cases involving days away from work

1.3

Cases involving days of job transfer or restriction

0.1

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

(Source: Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities)

Prices

This section provides industry-specific pricing information. The producer price index measures the percentage change in prices that domestic producers receive for goods and services. The prices included in the producer price index are from the first commercial transaction.

Data series Back
data
Mar.
2021
Apr.
2021
May
2021
Jun.
2021

Producer price index

(p)203.7 (p)204.8 (p)207.0 (p)207.8

Percent change from previous month

  (p)1.2% (p)0.5% (p)1.1% (p)0.4%

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Producer Price Indexes)

Workplace Trends

This section presents data on the number of establishments in rail transportation.

Establishments

Data series Back
data
1st quarter
2020
2nd quarter
2020
3rd quarter
2020
4th quarter
2020

Number of establishments

Private industry

(p)104 (p)114 (p)110 (p)110

Local government

       

State government

(p)2 (p)2 (p)2 (p)2

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages)

 

Data extracted on: July 30, 2021