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Vacancy Questions Preview

Vacancy Questions Preview

Grade: 12
* 1.[341] Choose the statement that best describes your specialized experience that qualifies you for this GS-12 position.
  1. I possess at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-11 as described in the vacancy announcement. This experience is well described in my application.
  2. I do not meet the one year specialized experience requirement as described in the vacancy announcement.


* 2.[15358] Do you have experience in the railroad industry that has provided you with knowledge of general railroad safety health principles and practices; as well as railroad investigation and inspection techniques?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 3.[15253] Do you have experience testing and providing maintenance on signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing warning systems?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 4.[27088] Do you have one year of experience equal or equivalent to applying Federal laws and regulations pertaining to railroad signal systems and highway rail grade crossing warning systems?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 5.[25454] Do you have one year of experience equal or equivalent to analyzing data that can be used during the course of conducting railroad inspections, or used to determine probable cause of railroad related collisions, derailments, or other accidents/incidents?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 6.[27108] Do you have one year of experience equal or equivalent to reporting and presenting information related to signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing warning systems?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 7.[5546] Select the response that best describes your highest level of experience with automatic cab signal, automatic train control, automatic train stop, or positive train control systems, including knowledge of their relationship to locomotive braking systems.
  1. I have no experience.
  2. I have received education and/or training on these systems, but have no experience on the job.
  3. I have been involved with the design of an automatic cab signal system, automatic train stop system, automatic train control system, and/or positive train control system.
  4. I have been involved with the installation of an automatic cab signal system, automatic train stop system, automatic train control system, and/or positive train control system.
  5. I have been involved with the maintenance, testing, and/or repair of an automatic cab signal system, automatic train stop system, automatic train control system, and/or positive train control system.
  6. I have managed employees responsible for the maintenance, testing, and/or repair of an automatic cab signal system, automatic train stop system, automatic train control system, and/or positive train control system.


* 8.[5548] Select the item(s) related to automatic cab signal, automatic train control, automatic train stop, or positive train control systems, including knowledge of their relationship to locomotive braking systems with which you are familiar.
  1. Positive Train Control System used to prevent train-to-train collisions (positive train separation).
  2. Positive Train Control System used to enforce train speed restrictions and temporary slow orders.
  3. Transponder type system installed adjacent to railroad trackage.
  4. Data radio-based system used for interconnection/communication of railroad wayside and locomotive-based train control equipment.
  5. Automatic Train Control System used to enforce speed restrictions associated with signal indications.
  6. Automatic Train Stop System used to stop a train when required at a specific point.
  7. None of the above.


* 9.[5537] Select the response(s) that describe technologies, methodologies, applications, etc. used in railroad wayside signal systems, with which you are knowledgeable and proficient in its use. Proficient is defined as having a good understanding of, and ability to work with, the following:
  1. Conventional track circuits (i.e., dc non-coded circuits) used in wayside signal systems.
  2. Coded track circuits used in wayside signal systems.
  3. Wayside signal circuits used in automatic block signal systems.
  4. Wayside signal circuits used in traffic control systems.
  5. Wayside signal circuits used in interlockings.
  6. Route locking.
  7. Indication locking.
  8. Approach or Time locking.
  9. None of the above.


* 10.[5538] Select the response(s) that describe the technologies, methodologies, applications, etc. below used in highway-rail grade crossing warning systems, with which you are knowledgeable and proficient in its use. Proficient is defined as having a good understanding of, and ability to work with, the following:
  1. Conventional train detection circuits (i.e., dc circuits used with insulated rail joints)
  2. Electronic train detection circuits (i.e., motion detectors, constant time warning, etc.)
  3. Circuitry used for relay-based grade crossing warning systems.
  4. Circuitry used for microprocessor-based grade crossing warning systems.
  5. Grade crossing warning systems equipped with flashing lights.
  6. Grade crossing warning systems equipped with gates.
  7. Grade crossing warning systems interconnected with highway traffic signals.
  8. None of the above.


* 11.[5540] Select the level(s) of experience you have related to the Federal Hours of Service Laws for railroad signal employees.
  1. I have no experience.
  2. I have received education or training on the laws, but have no experience on the job.
  3. I am a railroad signal employee on a signal construction crew, and am familiar with the requirements.
  4. I am a railroad signal maintainer, and am familiar with the requirements.
  5. I am a railroad signal supervisor/manager, responsible for the oversight of railroad signal systems, and am knowledgeable of the requirements.


* 12.[5544] Select the Federal regulation(s) related to railroad signal systems which you have applied and used in the work environment.
  1. 49 CFR Part 233, Signal Systems Reporting Requirements.
  2. 49 CFR Part 235, Instructions Governing Applications for Approval of a Discontinuance or a Material Modification of a Signal System or Relief from the Requirements of Part 236.
  3. 49 CFR Part 236, Rules, Standards, and Instructions Governing the Installation, Inspection, Maintenance, and Repair of Signal and Train Control Systems, Devices and Appliances, through my performing inspections, testing, and maintenance of railroad signal systems.
  4. 49 CFR Part 236, Rules, Standards, and Instructions Governing the Installation, Inspection, Maintenance, and Repair of Signal and Train Control Systems, Devices, and Appliances, through my directing and managing the inspections, testing, and maintenance of railroad signal systems.
  5. None of the above.


* 13.[15255] Select the item(s) related to highway-rail grade crossing warning systems with which you are familiar.
  1. American Railway Engineering & Maintenance of Way's (AREMA) Recommended Practices for highway-rail grade crossing warning systems.
  2. Federal Highway Administration's Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.
  3. Railroad rules and standards.
  4. 49 CFR Part 234, Federal Regulations Governing Grade Crossing Signal System Safety, through my performing installations of highway-rail grade crossing warning systems.
  5. 49 CFR Part 234, Federal Regulations Governing Grade Crossing Signal System Safety, through my performing inspections, testing, and maintenance of highway-rail grade crossing warning systems.
  6. 49 CFR Part 234, Federal Regulations Governing Grade Crossing Signal System Safety, through my directing and managing the inspections, testing, and maintenance of highway-rail grade crossing warning systems.
  7. None of the above.


* 14.[15256] Select the statement(s) that describe(s) your experience related to installation, inspection, testing, and maintenance of highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems.
  1. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained highway-rail grade crossing warning systems controlled by relay-based circuitry.
  2. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained highway-rail grade crossing warning systems controlled by microprocessor-based circuitry.
  3. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained highway-rail grade crossing warning systems that are interconnected with highway traffic signals.
  4. I have personally or with subordinates installed highway-rail grade crossing warning systems.
  5. I have personally or with subordinates installed, tested, and placed highway-rail grade crossing warning systems in service.
  6. I have personally or with subordinates represented railroads in highway department engineering studies or diagnostic reviews at highway-rail grade crossings.
  7. I have personally or with subordinates tested relays and/or signal conductors (wires or cables).
  8. None of the above.


* 15.[26788] Select the response that best describes your highest level of experience inspecting, testing, and maintaining railroad signal systems.
  1. I have not performed this task.
  2. I have received education or training in this task, but have not performed it on the job.
  3. I am, or have been, a railroad signal employee or contractor with experience on a signal construction crew, and my experience and training have prepared me to perform this task successfully.
  4. I am, or have been, a railroad signal maintainer or contractor and work independently and routinely on this task.
  5. I am, or have been, a railroad signal supervisor/manager, responsible for the oversight of railroad signal systems.


* 16.[15278] Select the statement(s) that describe(s) your experience related to installation, inspection, testing, and maintenance of railroad signal systems.
  1. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained an automatic block signal system.
  2. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained a traffc control system.
  3. I have personally or with subordinates inspected, tested, and/or maintained hand-operated switches equipped with switch circuit controllers.
  4. I have personally or with subordinates have inspected, tested, and/or maintained power-operated switches.
  5. I have personally or with subordinates have inspected, tested, and/or maintained microprocessor-based signal equipment.
  6. I have personally or with subordinates installed railroad signal systems.
  7. I have personally or with subordinates have installed, tested and placed all or part of a railroad signal system in service.
  8. I have personally or with subordinates have inspected and tested relays and/or signal conductors (wires or cables).
  9. None of the above.


* 17.[8909] Do you have experience in conducting railroad accident investigations related to signal and train control systems and/or highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 18.[15636] Select the type(s) of investigations related to highway-rail grade crossing warning systems, in which you are knowledgeable and proficient. Proficient is defined as having a good understanding and ability to perform such investigations.
  1. Participated in testing and inspection of a grade crossing warning system, related to the investigation of a grade crossing accident.
  2. Managed or led the testing and inspection of a grade crossing system, related to the investigation of a grade crossing accident.
  3. Knowledgeable of the requirements of such accident investigation but no practical experience.
  4. Conducted or participated in a grade crossing warning system activation failure investigation.
  5. Managed or led a grade crossing warning system activation failure investigation.
  6. Knowledgeable of the requirements of a grade crossing warning system activation failure investigation but no practical experience.
  7. None of the above.


* 19.[15637] Select the type(s) of investigations, related to railroad wayside signal systems, in which you are knowledgeable and proficient in. Proficient is defined as having a good understanding and ability to perform such investigations.
  1. Participated in testing and inspection of a wayside signal system, related to the investigation of a train accident.
  2. Managed or led the testing and inspection of a wayside signal system, related to the investigation of a train accident.
  3. Knowledgeable of the requirements of such accident investigation but no practical experience.
  4. Conducted or participated in a false proceed signal investigation.
  5. Managed or led a false proceed signal investigation.
  6. Knowledgeable of the requirements of a false proceed signal investigation but no practical experience.
  7. None of the above.


* 20.[14478] Do you have experience conducting research, both electronic and manual (ex. Internet, library, regulations, standard) to obtain information and analyze the data that can be used during the course of conducting railroad inspections?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 21.[15309] Select the statements) that describe(s)your experience in conducting complex analyses of facts and circumstances.
  1. I have identified the issues involved.
  2. I have developed methods and approaches for gathering data.
  3. I have developed analytical techniques to review and process the data.
  4. I have examined and reviewed various records and reports.
  5. I have observed various work methods.
  6. I have analyzed photographic evidence.
  7. I have analyzed incidents of probable cause(s) of accidents.
  8. I have identified, located, and evaluated technical guidance and regulatory documents.
  9. I have consulted with other occupational experts.
  10. I have conducted interviews.
  11. None of the above.


* 22.[24029] Choose the statements that describe how you have processed analytical data.
  1. Prepared and presented analytical information to management officials within the organization.
  2. Prepared and presented analytical information to an outside organization.
  3. Developed comprehensive materials of reports, briefings or meetings for management officials.
  4. Explained or justified decisions, conclusions, findings and recommendations to management officials within the organization.
  5. Interpreted and applied guidance and regulations to recommendations.
  6. None of the above.


* 23.[24031] Select the types of written products you have produced as a regular part of your job.
  1. Reports identifying safety issues and trends that included analysis and recommendations
  2. Informal guidance regarding interpretations of regulations
  3. Correspondence to local, state, federal representatives, railroads/shippers, and individuals regarding sensitive matters such as complaints
  4. Recommendations for solutions to problems
  5. Routine investigative reports
  6. Complex (such as the involvement of multiple agencies and/or multiple issues) investigative reports
  7. Reports of investigation findings
  8. None of the above


* 24.[5581] Choose the statement(s) that apply to your experience in interacting with a variety of people in various situations to achieve effective solutions for railroad safety related issues.
  1. I have served as a spokesperson for an organization.
  2. I have experience in persuading others to accept findings, recommendations, changes, etc.
  3. I have facilitated problem resolution.
  4. I have presented, defended, or negotiated program specific mission, goals, needs, with Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, or other Federal, State, or local organizations.
  5. I have provided on the job training and/or mentoring relating to safety issues.
  6. I have conducted technical training relating to safety issues.
  7. I have communicated with railroad personnel to resolve safety concerns.
  8. I have interviewed witnesses to develop facts.
  9. I have served on committees or task forces.
  10. I have served as a witness for investigations.
  11. I am regularly consulted by peers on technical safety issues.
  12. None of the above.


* 25.[5580] Select the statement(s) that describe your ability to successfully interact and work cooperatively with other railroad investigation team members.
  1. I have demonstrated success in a dynamic team environment that required extensive interpersonal skills, consensus building, negotiation, problem resolutions, and conflict resolution.
  2. I have planned investigation activities, arranged for qualified resources, managed investigative teams, and prepared investigation reports based on input from team members.
  3. I have experience coordinating work with others.
  4. I have served on a panel, committee, task force, etc.
  5. None of the above.


* 26.[15257] Select the statement(s) which best describe(s) written reports you have prepared, reviewed, or approved concerning signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems.
  1. I have not written reports concerning signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems.
  2. I prepare signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems maintenance, inspection, administrative reports, and correspondence compliant with Federal regulations.
  3. I review/recommend signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems maintenance, inspection, administrative reports, and correspondence compliant with Federal regulations.
  4. I approve/authorize signal and train control systems and highway-rail grade crossing active warning systems maintenance, inspection, administrative reports and correspondence compliant with Federal regulations.
  5. I wrote technical papers and/or articles that are published by trade organizations, labor organizations, or trade magazines.
  6. I prepare complete inspection and complaint reports or answer routine inquiries from employees and the general public regarding safety regulations and reporting procedures.


Grade: All Grades
[16869] Please note that ALL candidates must submit a resume online and complete the entire application (Resume, Core Questions, Vacancy Questions) process.

Ensure that your resume thoroughly supports your responses to the job specific questions and that it contains the names, titles, and phone numbers of your most current and previous supervisors so that we may contact them.

Please also be sure that your preference regarding contacting your current supervisors is shown in the User Information area.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to complete all questions.

High self-assessment in the application questions that is not supported by information in your resume may prevent you from being found best qualified, in which case your application will not be referred to the selecting official.



* 1.[31608] I understand the resume I have submitted for this position will be thoroughly reviewed to determine whether my experience and/or educational background is sufficient to meet basic and/or specialized experience requirements as outlined in this announcement. I also understand that if the information provided in my resume is not sufficient to support my responses to the vacancy announcement questions, it will affect the overall assessment of my application package.

  1. Yes
  2. No


[31648] When you are finished with the question phase of this announcement, you will be shown a list of documents that may include documents that do not apply to you. Review the list and the required documents section of the vacancy to determine which, IF ANY, are required for your application to be considered a complete application. Please do not submit documents that are not requested.
  • If you are not a veteran, the DD-214 and the SF-15 do not apply to you.
  • If you are not applying to an engineering position, the P.E. license or EIT exam does not apply to you.
  • If you are not requesting consideration under a special appointing authority, the special appointing authority documents do not apply to you.
If any of the requested documentation pertains to you, you have the option to fax using the fax coversheets provided, upload to this system or you may transfer the documentation from your USAJOBS account. Please note documents are NOT automatically transferred from USAJobs. Contact the office no later than the closing date, if you require assistance.

* 2.[35568] Select the response that is the GS equivalent grade level of the highest grade to which you have held on a permanent basis or have competed for promotion potential. Please ensure that you have also provided a supporting SF-50. Without the supporting SF-50, we may not be able to consider your application for this position.
  1. I have not held a government position.
  2. 04
  3. 05
  4. 06
  5. 07
  6. 08
  7. 09
  8. 10
  9. 11
  10. 12
  11. 13
  12. 14
  13. 15


* 3.[31609] I understand that if I do not submit all REQUIRED documents by the closing date, it will affect the overall assessment of my application package.
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 4.[3057] By responding to this question, you acknowledge that you have reviewed the Required Documents section of this announcement to determine which documents, if any, you need to provide in support of this application.
  1. Yes
  2. No


For all positions requiring travel, potential applicants must be able to obtain and retain a Government contractor-issued travel card to be used for official business as a condition of employment.

For those employees who enter on board and find that they are unable to obtain a card based on their credit history or who do not retain their card during employment may be subject to removal from the Federal service.

Applicants (who have Federal employment experience) will be required to certify in writing that they have not previously had their travel card suspended or cancelled. Those who fail to meet this condition of employment will have our offer of employment rescinded.

* 5.[588] Have you ever held a government travel card?

  1. Yes

        BRANCHED: * 1.[577] Do you certify that you have not previously had your travel card suspended or cancelled?
    1. Yes
    2. No
  2. No


* 6.[587] Federal applicants must have served 52 weeks at the next lower grade to satisfy time-in-grade. Please include the date of your last promotion (in mm/dd/yy format).
Maximum length of 20 characters.


* 7.[620] My most recent work performance evaluation was satisfactory or better (includes pass in pass/fail systems).
  1. True
  2. False


* 8.[586] How did you initially hear about this position?
  1. Email notification
  2. Agency website
  3. USAJobs (OPM) website
  4. Newspaper advertisement
  5. Magazine advertisement
  6. Commercial employment site (i.e. Careerbuilder, Monster)
  7. Placement office (Federal, State, College or University)
  8. Friend or relative
  9. Job Fair
  10. Minority professional network
  11. Other

        BRANCHED: * 1.[5063] Please indicate how you heard about this position.

       Maximum length of 250 characters.