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Crossing Guard  What They Do

Just the Facts


Guides or controls vehicular or pedestrian traffic at such places as streets, schools, railroad crossings, or construction sites.

This career is part of the Law, Public Safety, Corrections and Security cluster Security and Protective Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Monitors traffic flow to locate safe gaps through which pedestrians can cross streets.
  • Directs or escorts pedestrians across streets, stopping traffic as necessary.
  • Guides or controls vehicular or pedestrian traffic at such places as street and railroad crossings and construction sites.
  • Communicates traffic and crossing rules and other information to students and adults.
  • Reports unsafe behavior of children to school officials.
  • Records license numbers of vehicles disregarding traffic signals, and reports infractions to appropriate authorities.
  • Directs traffic movement or warn of hazards, using signs, flags, lanterns, and hand signals.
  • Learns the location and purpose of street traffic signs within assigned patrol areas.
  • Stops speeding vehicles to warn drivers of traffic laws.
  • Distributes traffic control signs and markers at designated points.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Crossing Tender -- Guards railroad crossing to warn motorists and pedestrians of approaching trains.
  • Flagger -- Controls movement of vehicular traffic through construction projects.