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Subway or Streetcar Operator

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All About Subway and Streetcar Operators

Occupation Description Operate subway or elevated suburban trains with no separate locomotive, or electric-powered streetcar, to transport passengers. May handle fares.

A Day in the Life of a Subway or Streetcar Operator

  • Attend meetings on driver and passenger safety to learn ways in which job performance might be affected.
  • Make announcements to passengers, such as notifications of upcoming stops or schedule delays.
  • Regulate vehicle speed and the time spent at each stop to maintain schedules.
  • Drive and control rail-guided public transportation, such as subways, elevated trains, and electric-powered streetcars, trams, or trolleys, to transport passengers.
  • Operate controls to open and close transit vehicle doors.
  • Direct emergency evacuation procedures.

What a Subway or Streetcar Operator Should Know

Below is a list of the skills most Subway and Streetcar Operators say are important on the job.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Types of Subway or Streetcar Operator

  • Train Operator
  • Tram Operator
  • Rapid Transit Operator (RTO)
  • Bus Operator
  • Transit Operator

Are There Job Opportunities for Subway and Streetcar Operators?

There were about 12,800 jobs for Subway or Streetcar Operator in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 4.7% which is below the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 600 new jobs for Subway or Streetcar Operator by 2026. There will be an estimated 1,300 positions for Subway or Streetcar Operator per year.


The states with the most job growth for Subway or Streetcar Operator are Texas, Colorado, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in New Jersey, Maryland, or Nebraska. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Subway or Streetcar Operator Average Salary

The average yearly salary of a Subway or Streetcar Operator ranges between $37,310 and $82,100.


Subway and Streetcar Operators who work in Maryland, New Jersey, or California, make the highest salaries.

How much do Subway and Streetcar Operators make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
California $57,550
Georgia $37,500
Maryland $63,120
New Jersey $60,510
Tennessee $49,220
Texas $46,810

What Tools do Subway and Streetcar Operators Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Subway and Streetcar Operators may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Office
  • Word processing software

Becoming a Subway or Streetcar Operator

Learn what Subway or Streetcar Operator education requirements there are.


How Long Does it Take to Become a Subway or Streetcar Operator?


Where do Subway and Streetcar Operators Work?


The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.


Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Are you already one of the many Subway or Streetcar Operator in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:


Image Credit: Hic85 via Public Domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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