Careers

Train Driver at TransPennine Express

What is a train driver?

Everyone knows that a train driver drives trains, but did you know it’s a job with lots of responsibility? As a train driver, it’s up to you to make sure hundreds of people get safely to where they want to go, and on time too! It’s not as simple as just “get in the train and go”. There are various safety procedures to be carried out, too. You’ll be responsible for checking the train, preparing it for service and testing the train to make sure everything is in good working order ready for the journey ahead. At the end of your journey, you’ll return the train to the depot for inspection, ready for servicing and repairs.

Along with driving the train, you’ll be responsible for the train and its passengers if anything should go wrong. You’ll need to work out what’s happened using your mechanical and technical skills and then either fix the problem or call for help from your team.

So tell me more about how to be a train driver

Passengers will rely on you to deliver the best service possible. When training and working as a train driver, you’ll have a lot of responsibility for ensuring that your journey is made safely and your passengers are satisfied! Employers will look for candidates that are responsible and reliable. Showing them that you have the qualities and dedication for working on trains is important.

If you’re invited for an interview for a trainee position, research the train operator you’re hoping to work for. Employers want to know that you are confidant when talking about the railway. Being able to express where you see the future of rail heading will show your commitment to this career.

Becoming a train driver - what does it take?

The training course for train drivers in an intense 18 month course, which will equip you with the skills to drive, trains smoothly and efficiently. In transport, it’s always “safety first” and your training programme will show you how to handle yourself, your passengers and your train in an emergency situation. Along with your mechanical knowledge, you’ll feel fully prepared to drive a train with passengers and cargo safely to its destination.

DID YOU KNOW: the national rulebook for train drivers states that you have to be able to cover 1 ¼ miles in an emergency on foot to protect your train!

Learning and development courses and training to build your career

As well as completing the training course to become a qualified train driver, you’ll be tested on your knowledge throughout your career so it’s always good to be in the know about engineering and any changes to procedure.

As you grow and develop in your career, you may get the opportunity to learn how to become a trainer so you can pass on your skills and knowledge to others. You’ll have to do an extra training course to be able to teach train drivers, but this can be a highly rewarding next step in your career on the railway.

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