• US Army railroad positions

  • A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads
A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by Guest
I heard that the US Army has a railroad division and that they do recruit people for track work and coodinators, but do they run trains themselves and employee army personel to do it?

It would be intresting to join the Army and find out you can operate a locomotive for them or work with the track gang.

Does any other branch of service have a railroad divison? Prehaps the Marines or National Guard?

  by NJTRailfan
With the US Army the railroad postions are only for the reserves. There is no full time postion. With the US Army reserve it's every one weekend of the month/2 weeks a year you serve with the Army. That's what I saw on their website at goarmy.com
  by bwparker1

This is the link you're looking for, let us know if you enlist!

  by efin98
http://usmilitary.about.com/library/mil ... arjobs.htm

That is a listing of the enlisted jobs for the US Army. about 3/4ths of the way down under the "Transportation" grouping is the 88P, 88T, and 88U MOSs, those are the ones you are looking for.
  by RailVet
All of the Army's uniformed rail positions have been in the Reserve since the inactivation of the last active Army rail unit, the 1st Railway Detachment at Fort Eustis, on 30 Sep 78. These are the rail units that currently exist in USAR:

757th Transportation Battalion (Railway)
- Headquartered in Milwaukee, WI, with subordinate units located in Chicago and Granite City, IL, and Fort McCoy, WI. See the unit's website at:
It is organized and trained for overseas deployment.

1205th Transportation Railway Operating Battalion
- Headquartered in Middletown, CT, with elements also training at NWS Earle, NJ and elsewhere. The unit is much smaller than the 757th and is organized to support CONUS railway operations for the Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (formerly the Military Traffic Management Command), such as Military Ocean Terminal, Sunny Point (MOTSU), NC, located about 25 miles south of Wilmington, NC.

1355th Transportation Railway Operating Company
- Headquartered at MOTSU, it was formerly designated as Det 1 and later Section C, 1205th TROB, before becoming a separate unit. It supports rail operations at the base.

226th Transportation Company (Railway)
- Headquartered at Westover Air Reserve Base near Springfield, MA, it is attached for peacetime administrative purposes to the 1205th TROB, but when mobilized it would become part of the 757th Trans Bn (Rwy). It is organized and trained for overseas deployment.

In addition to these rail units, the Army Reserve has Garrision Support Units at those posts serving as "power projection platforms." The organization of GSUs varies from post to post, and two have a handful of rail positions:

4003rd GSU
- Fort Hood, TX

2174th GSU
- Fort Eustis, VA

Major organizational changes are coming in the Army Reserve in the near future, and these will, quite likely, affect rail units as well.

In addition to reservists, the Army employs civilians for its daily rail operation requirements. For a good overview of the location of all military rail operations (not just Army) and the equipment operated, see Shane Deemer's website at:


  by SD Shortline
For one of my 2 week AT's I ran the GP9(10)'s at Ft. Leanord Wood, just one day. There wasn't a great deal of traffic.

  by fglk
Last edited by fglk on Thu Aug 19, 2004 7:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by RailVet
The two geeps at Senaca Army Depot aren't as mysterious as one might think. Prior to the depot's closure, they were relocated to other bases (USA 4626 went to Fort Bragg and USA 4627 went to McAlester Army Ammunition Plant, OK) and replaced by a pair of GE 80-ton locomotives (not 45-tonners - those went out of the Army inventory long ago), USA 1620 and USA 1662. Since then both GEs have been resold to operations outside of the US. The 1620 went to the Dominican Republic and 1662 went to Ciment Quebec, St. Basile De Pontneuf.

  by Otto Vondrak
USA 1843 is an H-12-44, and is currently operating in the collection of the Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum.


Andif you REALLY like Army units, we also have USA 1654, an 80-tonner that we got from a base down south.

http://rochnrhs.org/images/rgvrr1654_si ... dparty.jpg

And you can see them all run (and ride 'em) at our upcoming Diesel Days event August 21-22.



  by The Man
About a year or two ago I was at the base and there was ONE 80 tonner still there. I was told it was sold to a company in the South (US that is) and it was leased to the FGLK for use on the base for switching the storage cars. At one point they wanted a unit I have and due to the fact that the USA one was derailed and never fixed and as fas as I know the railroad and the owner are still going at with each other. I was looking at the old engine house for a car shop for my company and they had 1 80 tonner and 1 speeder and some other MOW tools there, I don't think the engine has left the site. But I could be wrong I just don't think I am.

  by RailVet
To answer an earlier question, no, the GE 80-tons were not moved from the depot via airlift. Invariably they are transported on special flat cars with mountings for the flanged wheels. SDDC has several of these cars for just this purpose. Heavier locomotives with traction motors that can be safely moved at higher speeds on their own wheels (such as the geeps) are not moved via flatcar, but are instead moved within commercial trains. The speed limit for GE 80-ton traction motors is something like 30 or 35 miles per hour, and if they're moved within a train at higher speeds, the traction motors are damaged.

  by wess
I dont know about the motors themselves, but it would be the gears and wheel set that would get the ost punishment in higher speed movements. If you put a low geared- low speed unit in a train thats going at road speeds, it will roach out the gearing and slide the wheels
  by RailVet
Effective 16 Sep 06 the 1205th TROB, described in an earlier post, will formally inactivate. The actual end will take place by 16 Jul 06. Current strength of the unit is now down to 5 personnel, the others having made transfer choices before the Army did it for them. The attached 226th Trans Co (Rwy) will remain active and will mobilize with the 757th Trans Bn (Rwy) if activated.

At Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point, NC, the separate 1355th TROC, currently organized as a CONUS rail support unit, will be reflagged in mid-Sep 06 as the 1151st Trans Co (Rwy) and will significantly reorganize as an overseas-deploying unit. This will involve tranferring the colors of the existing 1151st within the 757th from the Midwest to MOTSU. The personnel within the existing 1151st will be reallocated among the two remaining companies in the 757th - the 1150th and 1152nd. The 757th will then be the only remaining rail battalion in the Army.

Anyone getting any ideas about enlisting should realize ahead of time that , in the future, USAR intends to recruit its personnel from industries with the skills it seeks so it can focus on combat training during drill weekends and annual training. That means they're looking for people who are already railroaders who can bring their skills to the unit, where they will spend their limited training time preparing for combat. If you seek to get rail training and significant experience by joining the Reserve, it's not going to work, and as a member of the Transportation Corps you may just find yourself driving a truck in Iraq - perhaps not quite what you had in mind. :(
  by BCLRConductor
You would really have to love the Army to get your training from the Civilian RR and then enlist. It's hard enough getting good training on a Civilian RR, let alone trying to work for one if you had no contacts. Plus a big pay cut...

But with all that said I personnally would of loved to joined if we still had a big rail battlion and the defence department wasn't looking to downsize such units.

One of the first big frieght trains I ever saw was carrying military cargo. Tanks and such... :-D
  by RailVet
Anyone considering joining any reserve component unit would do well to get an honest assessment from someone already in the unit who isn't trying to get you to enlist. Problems abound regarding pay, personnel record errors and gaps, obtaining worthwhile training, promotions, etc. It can be so chaotic and backward that you'd think the reserve was just organized last week. Reserve units don't have big staffs like active duty bases, so if you're not getting paid, your records are incomplete, etc., the problems may persist indefinitely, especially if you don't have a lot of rank. Remember, those who work full time at the unit work for the commander, not you. Their next promotion and next assignment lie with taking care of him, not you. If you call up the unit to get assistance with a problem, you'll be told to go through your chain of command, and following an admonishment for not using the chain, you'll go to your chain and encounter those who were promoted to positions of responsibility but don't care to address your problems, don't know what to do about them, and aren't in a position to do anything about them except pass them on up to the next person, until eventually they get back to the same person you called initially - if it ever gets that far at all. This sort of thing is a regular fact of life in reserve component units. After getting jerked around like this for a few years, they'll actually have the gall to expect you to reenlist for more of the same.

Something else to consider is that future plans call for mobilizing units on a regular basis every four or five years and keeping those units active and deployed for a year. Is that going to aid or hinder your standing with your civilian job and your spouse? Will either still be there when you return? Think about it ahead of time, not when it's too late.

Regarding the last USAR rail battalion (757th), the unit once had its own GP10 for rail training, but a prior commander, a former infantryman, decided his unit would train as infantry, something with which he was familiar and felt comfortable. The geep was left where it could be attacked by vandals, and for a good year and a half it was. It was finally recovered but was so badly damaged that it was considered for scrapping. At last report, it had departed the unit for rebuilding as a Green Goat and it is unlikely this locomotive or any other will be put in the unit's hands. Consider this as a good example of how much rail time you'd get as a reservist.

My advice: stay out of any reserve component unit unless you're a glutton for punishment.