• Our booking engine at tickets.railforums.co.uk (powered by TrainSplit) helps support the running of the forum with every ticket purchase! Find out more and ask any questions/give us feedback in this thread!

Colour Blind

Status
Not open for further replies.

as400

New Member
Joined
9 Oct 2020
Messages
2
Location
Brighton
Red, green and brown....

Thinking of applying for a shunter/train preparer role.

Will being CB rule me out?

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

RailUK Forums

Mcr Warrior

Veteran Member
Joined
8 Jan 2009
Messages
12,050
Welcome to the forum as400!

Should you be able to see a number or something in your avatar, presumably it's one of those patterns used for testing colour blindness?
 

Inthe4foot

Member
Joined
4 Sep 2020
Messages
48
Location
Derby
Welcome to the forum as400!

Should you be able to see a number or something in your avatar, presumably it's one of those patterns used for testing colour blindness?

i hope not, I can’t see one :/ I’ve just done my medical and it was Pretty easy (if your not colour blind that is) lol
 

EssexGonzo

Member
Joined
9 May 2012
Messages
636
I will add blue, purple and any other colours that resemble each other to your list!

Way back when I was a teenager, I was told that I had to discount driving trains as a career choice because every attempt at the Ishihara test was a disaster.

Traffic lights are "top-middle-bottom" for me. Car rear lights are flash = amber, steady = red, steady and coming towards me = white! Project paperwork at work, using RAG statuses, must state the letters R-A-G and not just be a nice colour in square on a spreadsheet! :rolleyes:

I hope you find what you're looking for - I joined a bank but I wouldn't make the same choice if I were making it know. There must be disciplines on the railway that don't require 20/20 colour vision?
 

Stigy

Established Member
Joined
6 Nov 2009
Messages
4,883
The basis of how colour blind you are is usually judged using the Ishihara process and if you cannot pass this, that’ll be that I’m afraid. If you’re mildly colour blind and can pass this, then it’s game on.
 

as400

New Member
Joined
9 Oct 2020
Messages
2
Location
Brighton
My avatar is a slide taken from the Ishihara test for colour blindness. I'm guessing there is a number in it somewhere!...the job spec talks about responsibility for cleaning the trains...not sure how colour blindness should effect that...maybe its the shunting bit you can't do if you have problems with red/green/brown etc....IE you get asked to shunt the red train and shunt the green one instead? = chaos.
 

StoneRoad

Member
Joined
6 Jan 2010
Messages
251
Location
Haltwhistle
Just to confuse the situation.

IIRC a couple of the Ishikara slides don't have a number, and a couple have more than one number ...

The traditional test was to sort a bunch of wool threads into batches by colour (not helped by them being covered in oil, coal dust etc)
 

Stigy

Established Member
Joined
6 Nov 2009
Messages
4,883
My avatar is a slide taken from the Ishihara test for colour blindness. I'm guessing there is a number in it somewhere!...the job spec talks about responsibility for cleaning the trains...not sure how colour blindness should effect that...maybe its the shunting bit you can't do if you have problems with red/green/brown etc....IE you get asked to shunt the red train and shunt the green one instead? = chaos.
It’s more down to signal recognition as well as other railway signage (there’s a lot of it). Being safety critical, you’d be responsible for the movement of trains, so would need to easily differentiate between signals expects etc.

Your avatar is not from the Ishihara scale that you’d be tested on in the book at your medical (there’s no recognisable number, letter or image on it.....I hope lol). If they were all like that, I’d fail and my colour vision is fine. I assume if they do include that image it’s to make sure you’re not cheating :D
 

SGD5891

Member
Joined
12 May 2019
Messages
80
It’s more down to signal recognition as well as other railway signage (there’s a lot of it). Being safety critical, you’d be responsible for the movement of trains, so would need to easily differentiate between signals expects etc.

Your avatar is not from the Ishihara scale that you’d be tested on in the book at your medical (there’s no recognisable number, letter or image on it.....I hope lol). If they were all like that, I’d fail and my colour vision is fine. I assume if they do include that image it’s to make sure you’re not cheating :D
I was thinking the same thing, as I couldn’t see any numbers or letters in the avatar
 

ian94

Member
Joined
26 Aug 2008
Messages
55
It’s more down to signal recognition as well as other railway signage (there’s a lot of it). Being safety critical, you’d be responsible for the movement of trains, so would need to easily differentiate between signals expects etc.

Your avatar is not from the Ishihara scale that you’d be tested on in the book at your medical (there’s no recognisable number, letter or image on it.....I hope lol). If they were all like that, I’d fail and my colour vision is fine. I assume if they do include that image it’s to make sure you’re not cheating :D

They definitely had one like that in my test just to check, I really freaked out as I couldn't find anything and after saying I couldn't find anything a few times, she just said it was a trick one and I was so relieved haha
 

StaffsPM1

Member
Joined
7 Oct 2017
Messages
72
There are one or two in the test that someone who ISN'T colour blind can't see anything but someone with specific colour blindness will see a number...
 

CW2

Established Member
Joined
7 May 2020
Messages
1,927
Location
Crewe
I'm mildly red-green colourblind - enough to fail the Ishihara tests. The result was I was very restricted in what I could and couldn't do on the railways. In short, my choices were limited to an "indoor" career, so nothing involving being on my own in an operational environment (where failure to understand the signals might put either myself or other people at risk). I was turned down for an Operations Apprentice post in my teens, and I thought it was the end of all my hopes. In fact I made a successful career on the railways by specialising in Control work, project planning, and timetabling. (I think nowadays the Controllers have more stringent requirements than when I was around).

In brief - don't waste your time applying for anything involving outdoor work on the railways if you are colourblind. That might seem a bit negative, but it saves you having your hopes dashed at a later date. Look at the job specs carefully, and if in doubt, ask the recruiter.
 

Andy Pacer

Established Member
Joined
11 Jul 2017
Messages
2,731
Location
Leicestershire
Same as me, can't pass the plate tests so best off accepting you can't apply for anything safety critical at least.
 

LSWR Cavalier

Established Member
Joined
23 Aug 2020
Messages
1,565
Location
Leafy Suburbia
Surely systems could be made using colours or symbols that neatly everyone can see (+x-°^>< etc), to avoid disadvantaging a significant proportion of the (male) population
 

CW2

Established Member
Joined
7 May 2020
Messages
1,927
Location
Crewe
Surely systems could be made using colours or symbols that neatly everyone can see (+x-°^>< etc), to avoid disadvantaging a significant proportion of the (male) population
For desktop work, maybe yes, but outdoors in the rain in poor light, I'd trust a person who can distinguish different blobs of colour rather than expecting him / her to determine a particular shape.
 

TSG

Member
Joined
10 Aug 2020
Messages
171
Location
Somewhere in the South of England
Surely systems could be made using colours or symbols that neatly everyone can see (+x-°^>< etc), to avoid disadvantaging a significant proportion of the (male) population
You could make systems that let deaf/blind people drive a train or act as a signaller, or fly planes for that matter. Are those reasonable adjustments and do they introduce unjustifiable additional risk though? Reliance on a western alphabet and the English language excludes billions of people but we seem to get by :s
 

ian94

Member
Joined
26 Aug 2008
Messages
55
If you've done a colour blindness test in your assessment day, will they do it again in your medical?
 

whoosh

Established Member
Joined
3 Sep 2008
Messages
1,386
Red and yellow air pipes to potentially attach, being a Shunter.

It's not just signals and handsignals.
 

LSWR Cavalier

Established Member
Joined
23 Aug 2020
Messages
1,565
Location
Leafy Suburbia
The pipes could have different joiners to make fitting them wrongly impossible

Colour lights could have shapes as well as colours to make them even easier to see
 

Dieseldriver

Member
Joined
9 Apr 2012
Messages
974
The pipes could have different joiners to make fitting them wrongly impossible

Colour lights could have shapes as well as colours to make them even easier to see
We could also fit braille to signal plates to make it easier for blind Drivers to read them....
 

43066

Established Member
Joined
24 Nov 2019
Messages
9,603
Location
London
The pipes could have different joiners to make fitting them wrongly impossible

Colour lights could have shapes as well as colours to make them even easier to see

This is in the realms of fantasy.

How are you supposed to distinguish one shape, from a different one a few inches below, when the signal head might be over a mile away? Greens can clearly be distinguished from reds at this distance.

Next you’ll say: “but semaphore signals are shapes”, and I’ll say “not when viewed at night they aren’t!”

We could also fit braille to signal plates to make it easier for blind Drivers to read them....

Or just employ permanent second men to accompany them to call out the signal aspects. Of course they’ll need to be put through the full drivers’ course too. :)
 

Coach Carter

Member
Joined
21 Sep 2018
Messages
227
The pipes could have different joiners to make fitting them wrongly impossible

Colour lights could have shapes as well as colours to make them even easier to see
You try distinguishing a circle from a square or a + from an x at half a mile away or doing 100mph
 

T-Karmel

Member
Joined
20 Mar 2010
Messages
395
Location
London
As Andy Pacer said above, you won't be able to undertake any safety critical role, which I believe includes all of those which you desire of doing in the railway, however there are some other non-safety critical jobs available that you would be accepted for and be able to undertake safely, those might be for instance but not limited to selling tickets or protect revenue. Only thing that I know for sure, one company will easily allow you to do that, and another will still tests you like a safety critical person regardless the fact of you doing non-safety critical duties only. Hence, I'd ask them about it once I'd get invited to the interview.

About your profile picture, indeed it is like the one taken from the Ishihara test, however there is no number on it. And yes, they do appear on tests too as tricky ones. I was really surprised when I've seen it for the first time and I wasn't expecting a board without number :lol:
 

LSWR Cavalier

Established Member
Joined
23 Aug 2020
Messages
1,565
Location
Leafy Suburbia
Sighted people even with good colour vision may make mistakes
Pipes with different connectors might make mistakes less likely

Most people who are 'colour blind' can in fact detect many colours
 

4F89

Member
Joined
17 Aug 2018
Messages
860
Sighted people even with good colour vision may make mistakes
Pipes with different connectors might make mistakes less likely

Most people who are 'colour blind' can in fact detect many colours
Yellow and red pipes don't actually fit each other, so there is a physical difference already. One has a star valve, one doesn't. So if connected YR, they won't work.
 

Coach Carter

Member
Joined
21 Sep 2018
Messages
227
Sighted people even with good colour vision may make mistakes
Pipes with different connectors might make mistakes less likely

Most people who are 'colour blind' can in fact detect many colours
Yes people with fine colour vision may make mistakes as that’s human nature, but the person that can’t tell red from green/yellow will 100% have a mistake. I don’t care if they could distinguish between different types of infrared, if they can’t tell green/yellow/red apart then I’m not getting on there train even if you payed me
 

PupCuff

Member
Joined
27 Feb 2020
Messages
512
Location
Nottingham
I'd encourage the OP not to be disheartened if they can't pursue their chosen role on the railway - there's plenty of jobs on the railway which don't need correct colour vision. Although you might not be able to be a shunter, there may perhaps be other work on depot that you can do. Station work often doesn't require correct colour vision, so long as you aren't dispatching trains. Onboard catering roles or revenue protection could be options too. Most management grade staff don't require correct colour vision either so even just looking at things which are to do with the operations side of the railway there's everything from train planning to fleet & engineering management to health & safety to even managing the traincrews, at least at some TOCs (though many will require the latter to be trained up the same as the staff they're managing).
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top