ArrivaTrainsWales - Smell of fumes on one of their trains

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by paulfoel, 14 May 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Get the same train every day. Newport to Gloucester. Usually its a really old train (forget the model).

    Over the past few weeks, I've complained 3/4 times about the strong smell of fumes in the carriage. Ignored.

    Yesterday it was even worse. Other passengers complained. Train stopped at Severn Tunnel Junction.

    They shut down one engine (didnt know it had two) and proceeded on one engine. Which made things very slow.

    Point being. I'm wondering if this is the same train that for weeks has been exhibiting issues which have been ignored and has finally led to this big problem. Which would be typical of ATW who dont seem to give a monkeys once they've got your money.
     
  2. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    Messages:
    34,935
    Joined:
    6 Jun 2005
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    There will be a unit number on the front, which will identify if it's the same train each day.
     
  3. LowLevel

    LowLevel Established Member

    Messages:
    2,211
    Joined:
    26 Oct 2013
    A lot of the 'fume smells' on these units come from Webasto auxiliary heaters which are renowned for their inefficient operation producing clouds of smoke. I isolate them if they're too bad.
     
  4. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Some days it really is bad. So bad that someone with breathing problems is going to have a big problem if they're not careful.

    Surely the guard will notice this though. Sometimes like I said, they just ignore it, knowing that not many will complain about it.
     
  5. Llama

    Llama Member

    Messages:
    352
    Joined:
    29 Apr 2014
    Most likely to be a Webasto (acrid, badly combusted diesel) or maybe air system fumes (acrid, unique, hits the throat) or engine exhaust (obvious). Could also be excessive crankcase breather pipe emissions, these are rarer though. You don't want to be breathing any of these in. The air compressors fitted to Cummins NT855-series engines are lubricated by the sump oil so the compressed air for the air system contains traces of carginogens. OP, you do right to complain.
     
  6. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    I have complained several times and will continue to do so.

    Sometimes on the two carriage train its just the one carriage as well.
     
  7. Llama

    Llama Member

    Messages:
    352
    Joined:
    29 Apr 2014
    If you see light blue smoke drifting up the side of the train and the smell is intermittent (every 5 mins or so) it is quite likely to be the webasto. This is a gizmo under the train which is basically a small diesel fired water heater, it has a pump and a combustion chamber inside a water jacket. Its job is to keep the temperature of the coolant within a specific range (usually 72-78 deg C), so it periodically fires up for a minute or so. The engine coolant needs to be within this temperature range because that is the range the engine works most efficiently at, and also the waste engine heat is used to heat the trains, using heater matrices in which engine coolant flows, with small heater fans behind. If the engine coolant wasn't at the correct temperature the heating wouldn't be adequate.

    Sometimes the air intakes on the webastos (other brand names are available) get clogged and it doesn't burn 'cleanly', this is pretty common, especially in the autumn when temperatures begin to drop and bits of leaves etc end up in the air intake. In the summer they rarely fire up and are quite often isolated (switched off) - the ambient temperature in the summer often means the coolant temperature doesn't drop low enough to cause the webasto to need to fire up.
     
  8. PHILIPE

    PHILIPE Established Member

    Messages:
    7,184
    Joined:
    14 Nov 2011
    Location:
    Caerphilly
    It wouldn't be the same train every day and the process has been well explained to you. This would be nothing to do with ATW but a design matter and I haven't heard of anybody else complaining so vociferously after 30 years in traffic.
     
  9. EssexGonzo

    EssexGonzo Member

    Messages:
    301
    Joined:
    9 May 2012
    This sounds very consistent with a Webasto kicking in, although I didn't know trains had them. My car has one that operates < 7 deg C and you know its fired up due to the humming sound and *slightly different* smell of diesel outside of the car. But I suspect my car's cabin is slightly better sealed from fumes.
     
    Last edited: 15 May 2015
  10. 317663

    317663 Member

    Messages:
    93
    Joined:
    30 Sep 2013
    Location:
    Sutton
    [​IMG]
    *Not My Picture* Credit goes to Author

    Is it perhaps this train?
    It's a class 150 as the numbers say. Record the number on your train every day or whatever (It's usually the same model of train but a different number)
    If it's perhaps the same then report it to further things (The TOC website)
    If it's different each time then it's the webasto for sure.
     
  11. SeanG

    SeanG Member

    Messages:
    546
    Joined:
    4 May 2013
    Up here in the north, some might say that the smell of fumes is the norm...
     
  12. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    No similar but older than this type.
     
  13. headshot119

    headshot119 Established Member

    Messages:
    1,544
    Joined:
    31 Dec 2010
    Location:
    Cardiff
  14. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Its the 142. I noted the number on the front this morning - assume they are all unique.

    If so, it was that train today!
     
  15. alexl92

    alexl92 Established Member

    Messages:
    1,318
    Joined:
    12 Oct 2014
    If the number on the front is 142002, the first three digits -142002 - represent the class - and the second three represent the number within the class - 142002.

    For locos, they only have 5 digit numbers so it's first two for the class (Eg 67025), and the last three for number within the class (67015)
     
  16. CharlieSpotted

    CharlieSpotted Member

    Messages:
    373
    Joined:
    21 May 2014
    I was on an Arriva Trains Wales class 142 for the first time recently, and I wasn't able to put my finger on why, but something about the journey made me feel nauseous. I travel by train (could be one of half a dozen different types) every working day, and often at weekends too, and don't normally get nauseous.

    Could have been these fumes... ?
     
  17. PHILIPE

    PHILIPE Established Member

    Messages:
    7,184
    Joined:
    14 Nov 2011
    Location:
    Caerphilly
    Not necessarily. Could be the rocking.
     
  18. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Really crap trains these are. I cheer when I see a new one come around the corner (about once a week).

    Also, getting the crosscountry is much comfier. (although trains from nottingham via gloucester around 4-5pm are much fuller).
     
  19. 43367

    43367 Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    16 Jan 2014
    Was on a northern 158 a few weeks ago and the vesbibule where the two coaches jpin wasnt lined up properly with a slight gap in the top, and got all the exhaust fumes in the vestibule and rear coach when the train was accelerating
     
  20. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    21,078
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    FGW 166s seem particularly susceptible to this - sit near the corridor connection and they stink of fumes.
     
  21. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Crappy 143 on newp-glos this morning. Once again strong smell in front carriage but not rear.

    This is happening at least once a week now. I've complained to the guard/arriva trains wales on numerous occasions but nothing gets done. Which seems to be usual for ATW.

    IMHO these trains are not fit for use. I object to paying good money to sit choking for an hour and, as others have said, there are possible health issues with this.

    Who can I escalate this to?
     
  22. PHILIPE

    PHILIPE Established Member

    Messages:
    7,184
    Joined:
    14 Nov 2011
    Location:
    Caerphilly
    You seem to be the only person on the Forum who keeps on making a stink about this. It seems to be a DESIGN problem which is not an ATW problem.
     
  23. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    I disagree. PRevious comments seem to indicate its not a design problem.
    And why is it not ATWs problem? I pay them my money.

    If the service I pay for is not up to scratch I have a right to complain to the company that I pay for this service. Or do I bend over and take it?
     
  24. PHILIPE

    PHILIPE Established Member

    Messages:
    7,184
    Joined:
    14 Nov 2011
    Location:
    Caerphilly
    Have you complained to the Company to try and get satisfaction ? It might be better if you did that because your problem can't be sorted out on the Forum.
    Go to the company not the guard if you think it is a persistent problem.
     
  25. paulfoel

    paulfoel Member

    Messages:
    152
    Joined:
    6 Jan 2014
    Yes I have several times. Appreciate its not the guard fault of course. To be honest, I can't fault them they always admit its a problem.

    And they did shutdown one engine last week and limp to Glos (where they terminated the train) when it was REALLY bad.
     
  26. Emblematic

    Emblematic Member

    Messages:
    555
    Joined:
    14 Aug 2013
    You can raise this with the ORR if you believe it to be a health & safety issue and the TOC has not responded to your satisfaction. Details at http://orr.gov.uk/info-for-passengers/complaints
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page