how to become a subway train operator

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High school diploma

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  • How do I become a train operator in NYC?

  • If you believe you meet the testing requirements, you can apply online to take the train operator exam. Applications for MTA exams are accepted during a three-week period in any given month. A schedule of upcoming exams and their application periods can be found at the MTA Career Center.

  • How long does it take to become a subway operator?

  • Local transit organizations have their own training programs, and usually, operator trainees are chosen from among already-working subway and streetcar organization employees. In some instances, bus drivers become subway operators by completing the comprehensive training programs which can take six months.

  • How are train operators trained?

  • Most operators are hired from within their company and employees are trained on-the-job to gain experience. Specialty training programs may be needed for certain trains, and qualifications and classroom training are also provided if necessary or if the state requires it. Earning an entry-level job can lead to a lifelong career.

  • What is the role of the subway operator?

  • In addition to controlling the speed of the train and adhering to traffic signals, the subway operator will help ensure that passengers move to and from the train safely.

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