Labourer/Equipment Operator/Heavy Equipment Operator

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Website Canadian National Railway

Intermodal Labourer
Labourer/Equipment Operator/Heavy Equipment Operator
Job Summary

The Intermodal Labourer (also known as Labourer, Equipment Operator or Heavy Equipment Operator) is responsible for performing the same tasks as a Helper or Attendant Equipment Operator and Heavy Equipment Operator. The incumbent begins employment at CN as a Spareboard employee. The position works on-call and receives a minimum of 2 hours’ notice before the shift as the incumbent does not have a pre-set schedule for the week.

Major Responsibilities

Perform basic hand and horn signals to guide the Heavy Equipment Operators

Lift, carry, place and remove inter-box connectors (IBCs)

Drive pickups, hitch trucks, and yard tractors

Perform various tasks to ensure the proper setup of guides on the rail cars

Setup rail cars and assist Heavy Equipment Operators in loading and unloading containers and empty chassis and trailers to and from rail cars

Shunt inbound and outbound loads to and from railcars

Lift rail car hitches

Load reefers from carters

Connect and disconnect gensets (portable fossil-fuel powered generators)

Place, remove, and lock and unlock train connectors

Ensure proper container and trailer placement on rail cars

Drive pickup and hitch trucks

Operate yard tractors, forklifts, and small cranes

Complete paperwork associated with the loading and unloading of railcars and trailers

Operate heavy equipment, including mobile cranes (primarily ‘reach stackers’) that lift containers to and from railcars and truck chassis

Working Conditions

Available to work shifts, weekends, holidays, nights and occasional overtime when necessary

Available on-call 24/7, 24 hours a day with a minimum of 2 hours’ notice

Partially performed outdoors in various types of weather and environmental conditions

Regular exposure to dust, pollen, noise and vibrations

Physical: lift and carry up to 50 pounds frequently, and up to 70 pounds occasionally

Climb and balance, grip handholds while working at heights of 4-8 feet (1-2 meters) off the ground

Bend, stoop, squat, kneel, and perform overhead work


High School Diploma or General Education Diploma (GED)

Valid driver’s licence

Lift-truck operator certification

Must be at least 18 years of age

Ability to work autonomously, adapt to different situations and manage stress

Demonstrate good teamwork and maintain positive interactions with others

Good verbal, reading comprehension, and writing skills

Be dedicated to meeting established standards of quality, safety, productivity and client satisfaction

Hand-eye coordination

Proficiency with shovels, rods and pry bars, sledgehammers, jackhammers, wrenches, hand and power drills, hand tools and technical instruments (meters)

Ability to use heavy equipment such as a backhoe, trencher, and directional barring machine

Proficiency in the operation of lift trucks, up to 21,000 pounds (10,000 kg) capacity

Vocational and technical training or knowledge of Rail Operating Rules


The incumbent receives 40 hours of paid training (classroom training and 120 hours of on-the-job training). The role must remain in the position (Spareboard) for a minimum of 3 months after hire date.

This position is a unionized position.

As such, pay and benefits are governed by the applicable collective agreement.

At CN, we are dedicated to building North America’s safest, most inclusive and sustainable railroad, which includes reflecting the communities in which we operate. Research shows that candidates from underrepresented groups often don’t apply unless they feel they fit the job posting at 100%. Even if you don’t see yourself in every job requirement listed in a posting, we still encourage you to apply. If you require an accommodation for the recruitment process (including alternate formats of materials, accessible meeting rooms or other accommodations), please reach out to our team at .

As an equal employment opportunity employer, all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, and other protected status as required by applicable law.

We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only candidates under consideration will be contacted. Please monitor your email on a regular basis, as communication is primarily made through email.


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