Highway Maintenance Workers

Description

Maintain highways, municipal and rural roads, airport runways, and rights-of-way. Duties include patching broken or eroded pavement, repairing guard rails, highway markers, and snow fences. May also mow or clear brush from along road or plow snow from roadway.

Tasks

  • Flag motorists to warn them of obstacles or repair work ahead.
  • Set out signs and cones around work areas to divert traffic.
  • Perform preventative maintenance on vehicles and heavy equipment.
  • Drive heavy equipment and vehicles with adjustable attachments to sweep debris from paved surfaces, mow grass and weeds, remove snow and ice, and spread salt and sand.
  • Drive trucks to transport crews and equipment to work sites.
  • Haul and spread sand, gravel, and clay to fill washouts and repair road shoulders.
  • Dump, spread, and tamp asphalt, using pneumatic tampers, to repair joints and patch broken pavement.
  • Clean and clear debris from culverts, catch basins, drop inlets, ditches, and other drain structures.
  • Remove litter and debris from roadways, including debris from rock and mud slides.
  • Erect, install, or repair guardrails, road shoulders, berms, highway markers, warning signals, and highway lighting, using hand tools and power tools.
  • Inspect, clean, and repair drainage systems, bridges, tunnels, and other structures.
  • Perform roadside landscaping work, such as clearing weeds and brush, and planting and trimming trees.
  • Inspect markers to verify accurate installation.
  • Paint traffic control lines and place pavement traffic messages, by hand or using machines.
  • Apply oil to road surfaces, using sprayers.
  • Measure and mark locations for installation of markers, using tape, string, or chalk.
  • Place and remove snow fences used to prevent the accumulation of drifting snow on highways.
  • Apply poisons along roadsides and in animal burrows to eliminate unwanted roadside vegetation and rodents.
  • Blend compounds to form adhesive mixtures used for marker installation.

Skills

Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Operations Analysis
Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
Science
Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Programming
Writing computer programs for various purposes.

Abilities

Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

Interests

Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Work Style

Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Leadership
Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Achievement/Effort
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

Work Values

Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Lay Titles

Caltrans Equipment Operator
Caltrans Landscape Maintenance Worker
Equipment Operator (EO)
Heavy Equipment Operator
Highway Maintainer
Highway Maintenance Crew Worker
Highway Maintenance Technician
Highway Maintenance Worker
Highway Worker
Hot Oiler
Lane Marker Installer
Material Handler
Materials Handling Equipment Operator
Oil Spreader Operator
Patrolman
Road Builder
Road Maker
Road Mender
Road Oiler
Road Oiling Truck Driver
Road Patcher
Road Repairer
Road Sign Installer
Road Worker
Snow Plow Operator
Street Worker
Transportation Maintenance Operator
Transportation Maintenance Specialist (TMS)
Transportation Worker
Truck Driver

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$16.95 hourly, $35,260 annual.
Employment (2008):
141,180 employees