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Summary Report for:
53-6011.00 - Bridge and Lock Tenders

Operate and tend bridges, canal locks, and lighthouses to permit marine passage on inland waterways, near shores, and at danger points in waterway passages. May supervise such operations. Includes drawbridge operators, lock operators, and slip bridge operators.

Sample of reported job titles: Bridge Operator, Bridge Tender, Lock Tender

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings

Tasks

  • Move levers to activate traffic signals, navigation lights, and alarms. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Record names, types, and destinations of vessels passing through bridge openings or locks, and numbers of trains or vehicles crossing bridges. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Control machinery to open and close canal locks and dams, railroad or highway drawbridges, or horizontally or vertically adjustable bridges. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Direct movements of vessels in locks or bridge areas, using signals, telecommunication equipment, or loudspeakers. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Prepare accident reports. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Observe approaching vessels to determine size and speed, and listen for whistle signals indicating desire to pass. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Observe position and progress of vessels to ensure best utilization of lock spaces or bridge opening spaces. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Maintain and guard stations in bridges to check waterways for boat traffic. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Inspect canal and bridge equipment, and areas such as roadbeds for damage or defects, reporting problems to supervisors as necessary. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Clean and lubricate equipment, and make minor repairs and adjustments. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Log data such as water levels and weather conditions. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Write and submit maintenance work requisitions. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Perform maintenance duties such as sweeping, painting, and yard work to keep facilities clean and in order. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Check that bridges are clear of vehicles and pedestrians prior to opening. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Turn valves to increase or decrease water levels in locks. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Stop automobile and pedestrian traffic on bridges, and lower automobile gates prior to moving bridges. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Raise drawbridges and observe passage of water traffic, then lower drawbridges and raise automobile gates. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Operate lighthouses to assist marine passage near shores and dangerous waters. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Add and remove balance weights to bridge mechanisms as necessary. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Attach ropes or cable lines to bitts on lock decks or wharfs to secure vessels. See more occupations related to this task.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Adjustable wrenches See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Alarm systems — Intrusion alarms See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Automobiles or cars — Motor vehicles See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Binoculars — Surveillance binoculars See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Closed circuit television CCTV system — Closed circuit television CCTV monitoring systems See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Counter weight bag and counterweight — Balance weights See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Desktop computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Dock rings — Bitts See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Ear plugs — Hearing protectors See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Flares — Signal flares See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Gas generators — Gas powered generators See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Gate barrier systems — Traffic gates See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Grease guns — Grease dispensing guns See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Hand trucks or accessories — Hand trucks See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Hard hats See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Ladders — Step ladders See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Laser fax machine — Laser facsimile machines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Lawnmowers — Lawn mowers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Life vests or preservers — Life jackets See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Lifting cables — Cable lines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Loudspeakers — Loudspeaker warning system See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Marine craft communications systems — Very high frequency VHF radiotelephones See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Marine signaling systems — Signal bells; Signal flags See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Megaphones See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Multi gas monitors — Gas detectors See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Protective gloves — Safety gloves See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Putty knives See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Radarbased surveillance systems — Radar systems See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Roadway or highway lighting — Navigation lights; Span lights See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Safety boots — Safety-toe boots See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Safety glasses — Protective glasses See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Safety harnesses or belts — Fall protection equipment See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Sirens — Warning sirens See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Smoke detectors See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Snow blowers — Gas powered snow blowers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Snowplow attachments — Snow plows See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Steel bridge — Electric drawbridges See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Storm lights — Spot lights See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Sump pumps See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Televisions — Television monitors See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Traffic cones or delineators — Traffic directional cones See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Traffic signals — Bridge traffic signals See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Two way radios — Mobile radios See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Vehicle horns — Warning horns See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Weather stations — Weather monitoring instruments See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Wire cutters — Wire cutting tools See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Wire rope — Wire ropes See more occupations related to this tool.
  • X ray radiography examination equipment — X ray scanners See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Electronic mail software — Email software; Microsoft Outlook See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Word processing software — Microsoft Word See more occupations related to this technology.

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Knowledge

  • Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Operation Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Depth Perception — The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles). See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Monitor traffic signals. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor surroundings to detect potential hazards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Report vehicle or equipment malfunctions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor vehicle movement or location. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Operate communications equipment or systems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Control equipment that regulates vehicle traffic. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Direct vehicle traffic. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Control pumps or pumping equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Record operational details of travel. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Arrange maintenance activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Clean machinery or equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare accident or incident reports. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Secure watercraft to docks, wharves or other vessels. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Clean facilities or work areas. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Telephone — 66% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 59% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 79% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 59% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 48% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 41% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 38% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 38% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — 62% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 50% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Consequence of Error — 38% responded “Extremely serious.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 59% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 59% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 41% responded “Very important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 34% responded “Very high responsibility.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With External Customers — 31% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 34% responded “Very important results.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Standing — 45% responded “About half the time.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 31% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Time Pressure — 41% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Degree of Automation — 28% responded “Highly automated.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Letters and Memos — 31% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone One: Little or No Preparation Needed
Education Some of these occupations may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.
Related Experience Little or no previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, a person can become a waiter or waitress even if he/she has never worked before.
Job Training Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.
Job Zone Examples These occupations involve following instructions and helping others. Examples include taxi drivers, amusement and recreation attendants, counter and rental clerks, nonfarm animal caretakers, continuous mining machine operators, and waiters/waitresses.
SVP Range (Below 4.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
50   Less than high school diploma
39   High school diploma or equivalent Help
7   Some college, no degree

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: RCE

  • 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. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.

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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. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • 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. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $23.14 hourly, $48,120 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 4,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Decline (-3% or lower) Decline (-3% or lower)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 1,400
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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