How to become a Loco Pilot in Indian Railway?


Have you ever heard about the loco pilot of Railways? And ever had you thought of becoming a loco pilot in Indian Railway?

If Yes!

Then this would help you in knowing each and every fact about Loco Pilot in Indian railway.

Before proceeding first I will let you know what Loco Pilot is and what are his duties.

What is Loco Pilot?

A train driver in India is called a Loco Pilot. A loco pilot is a person who takes the full responsibility in driving the Rail engines to pull the series of coaches and ensuring that trains are properly maintained while in operation. In other words the person who controls the overall activities of the Rails/Rail engine are known as Loco Pilots. The loco pilot has the full incharge of driving the rail engine. These peoples are considered as the major backbone of this great Indian railway system.

In countries like Australia, USA the same locomotive controllers are known as Railroad engineers.

Loco pilot in Indian Railway

Life of a Loco Pilot in Indian Railway

The life of a loco pilot is a little tougher than the other profession. It’s not about learning, practicing and getting a license such as cars, bikes..etc. They need to be more strong both physically and also mentaly to sustain in this profession. People might think that being a rail loco pilot is easy as they keep on driving and traveling to various destinations so it would be a fun filled profession, but it’s not like that.The cab of loco pilot is filled with heavy noise, dust, excess heat, high voltage electricity or sometime diesel smell if t is a diesel locomotive.

Due to adverse weather conditions, the temperature in the Rail engine cab increases upto 56 degree celsius

Things do loco pilots Keep in mind before starting the Locomotive.

Things to check in locopilot
  1. Safety circulars, safety bulletins, technical circulars, driver instructions, caution orders, chalk parts, and divisional circulars must all be read.
  2. To carefully examine the loco before departing from the yard. Additionally, when main line staff changes, check the loco with the assistant loco pilot within 10 minutes.
  3. Take the time to read the caution order, which mentions sectional track work progress and a temporary speed restriction.
  4. Check the loco’s repair book for any notes about locomotive problems.
  5. Examine the brake power certificate to see if it is still valid.
  6. Make sure the oil level is correct (diesel, lube oil, compressor oil in case of diesel locomotive and transformer oil, GR oil, compressor oil, exhauster oil in case of electric locomotive.)
  7. Examine the locomotive’s undercarriage, which contains the traction motor and its cardium compound, as well as the TM safety bolts and other safety fittings.
  8. With the guard in place, perform a pressure continuity test on the brake pipe.
  9. After receiving the departure signal, the loco pilot must start the train and operate it in accordance with station signals.
  10. The pilot of the locomotive must keep a sharp eye out. He must obey all permanent and temporary speed limitations while on the run.
  11. Loco pilots have an extremely demanding job. For example, a loco pilot working on a high-speed train must work for 400 to 500 kilometres without stopping. He can’t even relieve his urinal pressure while running.
  12. Any track problem, such as jerk or lurch, must be detected by the loco pilot at all times.
  13. anything out of the ordinary with yourself or others on the train. He must be mentally prepared to use preventative measures in accordance with the general and subsidiary rules, as well as the accident manual’s recommendations. It is adequate to relieve most pilots’ mental stress.
  14. No employee in the Indian railway system is expected to update his expertise outside of his field. The loco operating personnel, on the other hand, must be knowledgeable not only about his train’s operation but also about pathway engineering, carriage and waggon technical issues, signal and telecommunication issues, traffic, safety, locomotive maintenance, and commercial issues.

How to become a Loco Pilot in India

Whenever required, Indian Railways recruit Assistant Loco Pilots through Railway Recruitment Boards. After qualifying, these ALPs are required to work for an average of 5 to 10 years before being promoted to Loco Pilots. Promotion to the position of Loco Pilot may take longer than expected, as it is dependent on the availability of vacancies in each division.

Here is the recruitment process for being a Loco pilot.

aerial vie of loco pilot
  • A qualifying MCQ test.
  • A psychological test based on different aspect such as memory, speed and putting the puzzle together on a response sheet.
  • After this A-1 category medical exam and highest priority given to the vision and assimilating colours.
  • 6 months of training on both the traction and rules to drive and some of the knowledge of different rolling stocks.
  • The INTERVIEW we are talking about is the viva of practical exams.
  • Viola! U become an Assistant loco pilot.
  • Gain some experience during your service being an Assistant and as per promotional basis, again you have to do a course but this time practicals will be done on a simulator.
  • Pass the simulator test and you are a Loco pilot.

Salary of Loco Pilot In Indian Railway

As a loco-experience pilot’s grows, he will be rewarded with a variety of benefits in addition to his wage.

The cadre of that loco-pilot grows as their experience grows. He is initially assigned to pilot a goods train with non-perishable and non-emergency supplies (they are given the lowest priority). They will be given the keys to passenger trains sooner rather than later. He gets granted the keys to Rajdhani sooner or later, based on his service. After at least 10 years of excellent service, a loco-pilot becomes a Rajdhani pilot. For 6 hours of duty, a Rajdhani loco-pilot can earn up to 1 Lpm.

salary of locopilot

Piloting freight trains in India pays roughly INR 35,000 per month on average for somewhat novice loco-pilots. In the Indian Railways, however, experienced loco pilots can earn up to INR 1,00,000 per month piloting express trains such as the Shatabdi Express, Duranto, and others.

Get to know about various Rail coaches

Qualification Of Loco Pilot In Indian Railway

The job demands constant attention and a high level of reactivity. An aptitude exam measures your ability to respond to conditions. You will support the driver in fulfilling his tasks, which include calling out signals as soon as one is seen, fine-tuning the locomotive, and attending to minor locomotive maintenance.

To apply for this position, the candidate must have completed an ITI (approved by NCVT/SCVT) in any specialised trade.

Candidates with a diploma in engineering are also eligible, as long as they have finished at least 10th grade from a recognised board.

The candidate must have completed the 10th grade or above from an Indian government-approved board.
The applicant must have passed the RRB ALP and Technician tests, as well as several Metro Train operator exams.
Must hold an NCVT or SCVT ITI certification in one of the following trades:
Mechanic Diesel or Petrol Engine, Anchor Electrician, Coil Winder and Armature Winder, Electronics Mechanics, Fitter, Heat Engine, Instrumentation Mechanic, Machinist, Welder, Mechanic Radio and TV, Refrigeration and AC Mechanic, Turner, Marine Welder

A person can apply for graduation via the distance learning method to manage his time. The Railways permits a candidate to take ‘study leaves’ to prepare for exams or attend exams.

Age Restrictions:

The candidate’s age should be between 18 and 30 years old.

Medical Regulations:

Medical fitness is necessary for the RRB ALP Exam, and Loco running men must meet the highest medical standards.

This medical standard must be maintained from the time of hire until the conclusion of the railway driver’s service.

Loco Pilot is an important vacancy in RRB and It’s approved by the ministry of the railway. RRB conduct exams annually for this Loco Pilot Post. Loco Pilot Selection Procedure will be Written Exam in Single stage, aptitude test, Verification of original documents.

A loco pilot takes a lot of the time of his employed life into getting proper training of operating a locomotive or a MU local. Most pilots get medium to high pay for their job.

In India, only Indian Railways and State Metro Corporations conduct recruitment exams for Assistant Loco-Pilot positions. Apart from these, no other private corporation in India directly or indirectly employs Loco-pilots. In India, passing the recruiting examinations is the sole method to become a Loco-Pilot. The two de facto ALP recruitment tests are the RRB ALP and Technician and State Metro Exams. The RRB ALP application process is set to begin soon, with approximately 64, 371 positions available across the various RRB boards.

It is widely agreed that a candidate for the position of Loco-Pilot should have a mechanical/electrical/electronics engineering background or relevant abilities in those areas.
To be hired as a Loco-Pilot in some countries, such as Australia, one must complete special training such as “Train Driving Certification.”

I hope this would have helped you in knowing the facts of loco pilots in Indian Railway

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