Colour blind - Northern trains dispatch

Status
Not open for further replies.

JeffManchester

New Member
Joined
6 Mar 2021
Messages
3
Location
Manchester
Hi,

Last year I failed the medical for Conductor at Northern as they found out I was colour blind (I didn't realise I was!!!). Obvs, j was unsuccessful .

I have since applied for the despatch job as the ad didn't mention colour blind, unlike the Conductor one.

I contacted them as they have invited me for an interview. Their reply is that the medical will be "similar" to the Conductor one, but they will leave it up to me to decide if I still want to proceed!!!!

I don't get why they would say that if it's an automatic fail again.

Any advice??
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

Mcr Warrior

Established Member
Joined
8 Jan 2009
Messages
4,700
What alternative career opportunities remain on the railway for someone, such as the OP, with colour blindness?
 

scouseyb123

Member
Joined
27 Nov 2012
Messages
183
Course its going to be a fail. As you might attempt to dispatch the train against a red when you think its a green?
 

DriverEight

Member
Joined
18 Feb 2021
Messages
191
Location
Sunderland
The reason it's being left up to you is because they don't know anything about your condition. Every medical condition can change over time. Some are only temporary, some improve or get worse on their own, some can improve with treatment. They don't know it will be an automatic fail, so they won't make the decision for you.

The question is, do you want to go through the whole process based on the probability that you'll fail, or are you willing to try for the slim chance of a pass because you want the job so badly?

Incidentally, there's a company called Enchroma that sells glasses that claim to help with some colour blindness symptoms, but whether these actually work is debatable. And whether the railway would accept them is unknown
 
Last edited:

16.19

Member
Joined
2 Dec 2020
Messages
64
Location
Leeds
Sadly it would be a fail. Is there any other direction you would like to take on the Railway that’s not safety critical?
 

JeffManchester

New Member
Joined
6 Mar 2021
Messages
3
Location
Manchester
Course its going to be a fail. As you might attempt to dispatch the train against a red when you think its a green?
Absolutely absurd comment. Just because a test says there is an issue, don't want mean I can't tell the difference between and red & a green signal. Colour blindness has a VERY broad spectrum and I know my limitations.......
 

scouseyb123

Member
Joined
27 Nov 2012
Messages
183
Absolutely absurd comment. Just because a test says there is an issue, don't want mean I can't tell the difference between and red & a green signal. Colour blindness has a VERY broad spectrum and I know my limitations.......

doubt a TOC is going to take any risks, not even a slight one if it risks compromising safety.
 

AAA

Member
Joined
19 Jan 2021
Messages
15
Location
Manchester
Hi,

Last year I failed the medical for Conductor at Northern as they found out I was colour blind (I didn't realise I was!!!). Obvs, j was unsuccessful .

I have since applied for the despatch job as the ad didn't mention colour blind, unlike the Conductor one.

I contacted them as they have invited me for an interview. Their reply is that the medical will be "similar" to the Conductor one, but they will leave it up to me to decide if I still want to proceed!!!!

I don't get why they would say that if it's an automatic fail again.

Any advice??

Sorry to jump on your thread jeff but I am waiting to here about a medical for a Conductor position and was told I have mild colour blindness (borderline) so not sure if I will pass when I get a medical, can I ask how the ishihara test worked? How many you could get wrong if any? How many you was tested on?
 

LSWR Cavalier

Established Member
Joined
23 Aug 2020
Messages
1,226
Location
Leafy Suburbia
There are degrees of colour blindness. A very few people can only see black, white, grey like old bw photos.

I am colour blind so I could not be a train driver, but I love colours and can distinguish very many, thousands? I understand people with better (normal?) colour vision can distinguish many more.
 

craigybagel

Established Member
Joined
25 Oct 2012
Messages
3,556
Absolutely absurd comment. Just because a test says there is an issue, don't want mean I can't tell the difference between and red & a green signal. Colour blindness has a VERY broad spectrum and I know my limitations.......
It'll come down to a very simple question I'm afraid - do you pass or fail an Isihara test. As it stands, that's the requirement for pretty much all safety critical roles, dispatcher included.
 

skyhigh

Established Member
Joined
14 Sep 2014
Messages
1,562
It'll come down to a very simple question I'm afraid - do you pass or fail an Isihara test. As it stands, that's the requirement for pretty much all safety critical roles, dispatcher included.
This. Signals appear various different shades depending on the make, style and age of the signal. With a safety critical role, they're not going to take chances.
 

RHolmes

Member
Joined
19 Jul 2019
Messages
343
Because of the closeness of the red/green colour spectrum it is highly likely that you would fail the colour blindness test sadly. The reason you would have failed for a conductor is that one of the important parts of the role is that it requires self-dispatching where you have to monitor signals, not forgetting that some of the new LED signals only have one bulb that changed to Red green or yellow unlike the older ones which you can see the position of the bulb like a traffic light.

The role probably closest to a conductor without this essential sight requirement would be a revenue protection officer or on-board host.

Other roles to consider might be:
- Gateline assistant
- Passenger assistant
- Ticket Office
- Presentation team
- Station security (network rail)
- Station management
- Control roles
- Signaller roles
 

Devon Sunset

Member
Joined
20 Oct 2020
Messages
71
Location
East Lothian
I’ve been in the same boat myself. Can’t pass the Ishihara test for love nor money (best result 14/21), paid for the City University test and passed that to a level of being able to fly a plane, be an electrician but makes no difference to the railway. I’ve only got a minor problem and can distinguish colours easily until it comes to Ishihara. Corrective glasses are not acceptable either I’m afraid so best to look for a non safety critical role as others have said. Good luck.
 

AAA

Member
Joined
19 Jan 2021
Messages
15
Location
Manchester
I’ve been in the same boat myself. Can’t pass the Ishihara test for love nor money (best result 14/21), paid for the City University test and passed that to a level of being able to fly a plane, be an electrician but makes no difference to the railway. I’ve only got a minor problem and can distinguish colours easily until it comes to Ishihara. Corrective glasses are not acceptable either I’m afraid so best to look for a non safety critical role as others have said. Good luck.

How many out of 21 do you need to get correct?
 

JeffManchester

New Member
Joined
6 Mar 2021
Messages
3
Location
Manchester
Sorry to jump on your thread jeff but I am waiting to here about a medical for a Conductor position and was told I have mild colour blindness (borderline) so not sure if I will pass when I get a medical, can I ask how the ishihara test worked? How many you could get wrong if any? How many you was tested on?
Hi. In not sure what the pass rate was. She tested me on about 20+ I'd say. She was absolutely vile. I didn't know I was colour blind and she made out that I did but was changing my arm. Thankfully, Northern & Medigold took my official complaint seriously.

Because of the closeness of the red/green colour spectrum it is highly likely that you would fail the colour blindness test sadly. The reason you would have failed for a conductor is that one of the important parts of the role is that it requires self-dispatching where you have to monitor signals, not forgetting that some of the new LED signals only have one bulb that changed to Red green or yellow unlike the older ones which you can see the position of the bulb like a traffic light.

The role probably closest to a conductor without this essential sight requirement would be a revenue protection officer or on-board host.

Other roles to consider might be:
- Gateline assistant
- Passenger assistant
- Ticket Office
- Presentation team
- Station security (network rail)
- Station management
- Control roles
- Signaller roles
Thank you.

I’ve been in the same boat myself. Can’t pass the Ishihara test for love nor money (best result 14/21), paid for the City University test and passed that to a level of being able to fly a plane, be an electrician but makes no difference to the railway. I’ve only got a minor problem and can distinguish colours easily until it comes to Ishihara. Corrective glasses are not acceptable either I’m afraid so best to look for a non safety critical role as others have said. Good luck.
Thank you.....
 

185

Established Member
Joined
29 Aug 2010
Messages
4,087
Hello. The application form didn't ask for colour blindness, as it remembers your original pre-screening colour blindness answer from the previous application (at the start).

Would advise deleting and doing a new application from scratch.
 

1ab

Member
Joined
17 Mar 2021
Messages
12
Location
Lancaster
Please can someone tell me how this test is carried out? Do you use both eyes or have to swap or cover eyes up throughout this test? What about if you wear glasses?
 

scrapy

Established Member
Joined
15 Dec 2008
Messages
1,641
Test is done using both eyes. If you wear glasses normally, you can continue to wear them during the test.
 

voyagerdude220

Established Member
Joined
13 Oct 2005
Messages
2,876
Absolutely absurd comment. Just because a test says there is an issue, don't want mean I can't tell the difference between and red & a green signal. Colour blindness has a VERY broad spectrum and I know my limitations.......

The comment you're referring to is anything but absurd (IMO).

Where job roles are safety critical, why would a TOC take a risk by employing you, when you have problems with your colour blindness?

When despatching a train, you are responsible for the safety of everyone associated with that train- Of course there will be set regulations etc. which define what TOCs see as being safe.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top