Train Driver

Also known as: Locomotive Driver

Job Role: Driving between stations or depots, communicating with control centres, following track signalling and safety instructions

Female train driver sitting at controls

The role

Demand for freight train drivers is particularly high.

Driver tasks include:
• inspecting the train prior to departure
• reporting defects
• carrying out adjustments and undertaking repairs
• monitoring the train's speed
• making announcements to passengers and liaising with onboard staff.
Female train driver sitting at controls
Skills required

Skills required to be a Train Driver

  • Physically fit
  • Valid drivers licence
  • Ability to work outdoors
  • Can respond to abnormal situations and emergencies 
Entry pathways

Previous experience

Train Drivers often come from a career in:

  • construction or property services 
  • resources, engineering or manufacturing sectors
  • mechanic or mobile plant operations
  • rail customer service 
  • Railway track operations


Minimum requirements

Rail operators generally recruit new drivers into a traineeship, during which time they complete the necessary training and in many cases receive a TLI42622 - Certificate IV in Train Driving.

For more information contact rail operators about their training programs.

You can find out more about who's studying to be a Train Driver and where they are doing their training here.



Career progression

What a Train Driver's career progression can look like

Train Drivers may look to advance their career through opportunities such as superintendent, network controller, maintenance planner or operations manager.

train driver - career
What do I do next

What do I do next?

Our findings include information from the Australian Industry Standards' Seamless Future Rail Skills report. Take a look at their Train Driver pathways.

Our analysis on Train Driver training in Australia can be found here.

For more information on becoming a Train Driver:

  • contact train companies about their driver training programs
  • check out the Work in Rail website
  • talk to your careers adviser 
  • get in touch with your union
  • contact your local TAFE
  • if you already work in rail, talk to your employer.
Read our stories

Read our stories

Margaret Fisk was a former retail assistant and stay-at-home mum when she decided to take her life in a new direction. She now works as a Train Driver and Driving Instructor for Public Transport Authority WA.

Read about her journey here.

If you have great job in rail, get in touch.