Railroad Switching: A Quick Practice Hiring Test
When you apply for a job as a conductor, many railroads' HR departments will give you a test to see if you have an aptitute for railyard flat switching.
Switching takes time to learn and very few people can just go out and switch a yard without having some experience. Most people take a few years to really figure out how to switch efficiently.
But to find out if you have the aptitude to learn this kind of work, many companies will give you a test.
The test asks you to put cars in certain orders in the least amount of moves possible. The questions they ask can include anything from "How many times must the locomotive go forward?" to "How many times must the switch be lined to put the cars in order?"
Practice Railroad Switch Test
Below are two images of a simple and quick practice test I threw together for a couple people who requested it. Anyone can feel free to save these images and print them off to help them figure out a few switching moves.
I included an answer sheet with it so you can see if your answer matched and you can try to figure out how I did it in the amount of moves I did. There are only three questions and they aren't the hardest. If you find a better way to complete the moves, let me know so I can make the test even better.
When I get the time and motivation, I'll make a better one someday. Until then, enjoy this railroad practice switch test.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.