ECML/MML major power problems (09/08)

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by yorkie, 9 Aug 2019.

  1. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

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    When LM was a GoVia company, ticket acceptance was easy. Now that they are Abellio, it is done less often.

    However I know for a fact that LNW did accept TL tickets, as I know several people who went that way no problem (and had tickets checked).
     
  2. HSTEd

    HSTEd Established Member

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    2GW of loss is somewhat worrying because a single large PWR like the ones at Hinkly Point C is ~1600MWe......
     
  3. forty_two

    forty_two Member

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    Is anyone able to confirm if it was specifically the frequency swing that caused the 700 failure, or whether it was merely the fact that power was lost for a time?
     
  4. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

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    That’s not been confirmed, publicly or otherwise.
     
  5. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    They have survived powercuts previously, there was something different about this one.
     
  6. 3270

    3270 Member

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  7. bramling

    bramling Established Member

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    It seems the answer to that is yes. But remember the whole of LU can be stopped by a few of their own electrical control room operators not working for whatever reason! (Although LU have made some attempt at training some managers as emergency cover staff - which given the highly specialised nature of the role in question is a rather dubious move IMO).
     
  8. agourdie

    agourdie Member

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    Was on a northbound train stuck in St Pancras station. Driver did a reboot which took 5 minutes. Train eventually departed south to Brighton
     
  9. AM9

    AM9 Established Member

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    That certainly wasn't my experience. I alighted a westbound Circle line train at Farringdon at about 17:40. When I arrived on the northbound TL platform there was an 8-car 700 there, quite full with one pair of doors open but all others closed. After about 5 minutes, they were opened and it was emptied. There was a cluster of passengers surrounding a uniformed member of staff asking questions about how to get to various destinations. I managed to ask between two of them: "are they accepting TL tickets at Euston?" He said yes so I went back to the LU platforms and boarded the first westbound train to Euston Square. On checking RTT, I went to the P9,10 & 11 ramp as there was a Tring train due at 18:34. I asked a uniformed staff member whether they were accepting TL tickets and he said yes. He asked me of my destination to which I said St Albans Abbey via Watford Junction so he said that I should get an MKC bound train from P9, which was fast to WFJ so I would be in time for the 18:56 Abbey Flyer.
    All went well and I was in SAA on time at 19:12. So there was no issue with ticket acceptance for me.
     
    Last edited: 10 Aug 2019
  10. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Maybe but ticket acceptance should be both inbound and outbound at Euston, as it was they were only accepting outbound tickets.

    Yes I know that’s the right move but for those who needed to get south of the river they needed inbound tickets to be accepted too.
     
  11. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Indeed and change of TOCs should not mean changes to ticket acceptance in any case, LNR were partly to blame as they weren’t clear enough on twitter
     
  12. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Just a gentle reminder that this is about the rail disruption; any other topics are very welcome but they do need to be in a suitable thread in the correct area of the forum.

    To discuss National Grid issues please use this thread: https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/is-the-national-grid-sufficiently-resilient.188283/

    If you see an off topic post, please do not reply to it in the thread. If you wish to reply, please post a new thread. Please report the first off topic post and let us know the details; we might be able to move posts into the correct thread. However this is time consuming and it is better if people create new threads themselves.
     
    Last edited: 10 Aug 2019
  13. ashkeba

    ashkeba Member

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    Did the service normalise from noon like GTR said or are trains and crews still out of position leading to cancellations?
     
  14. Failed Unit

    Failed Unit Established Member

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    It actually was normal for Saturday all day. Lots of cancellations (just crew shortages were not the listed reason)
     
  15. Elecman

    Elecman Established Member

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    The issue is DNOs do not like large and variable unbalanced 2 phase loads being taken off thier 132 KV networks , hence the NationalGrid preference for all new Traction Feeders being taken off the 400 KV Grid.

    There is no possibility of the Railway Traction supply back feeding the Grid as the reverse flow protection would instantly open the NG breakers
     
  16. Elecman

    Elecman Established Member

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    Yes they are, and tested by drop testing every 3 months, ie not just pressing the start button, but by physically turning off the incoming supply thus simulating a power cut.
     
  17. pdeaves

    pdeaves Established Member

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  18. High Dyke

    High Dyke Established Member

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    Oh, yes. I spent a steady few hours on Thursday evening, Rest Day working, on a quarterly power test of the signalling in an area where I work. Test went so well I hadn't actually realised the 'mains' power had been restored until the sparky came up to see me.
     
  19. mm333

    mm333 Member

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  20. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    18k delay minutes and starting at 2 million squid attributed to 700/717 sit downs...
     
  21. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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  22. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    Shed load of cancellations on the GN side tonight. No idea if they’re related to last night’s shenanigans. I suspect not as this is quite normal at weekends for GTR, despite the largest driver recruitment campaign in railway history over the last 5 years.
     
  23. ashkeba

    ashkeba Member

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    2R71 ROYSTON KNGX 23:20 Cancelled
    Service cancelled due to a. shortage of train crew.
    2C68 KNGX CAMBDGE 23:28 Cancelled
    Service cancelled due to a. shortage of train crew.
    9S68 BRGHTN CAMBDGE STP 23:30 Cancelled 23:31 Cancelled
    Service cancelled due to a. shortage of train crew.
    [...]
    1T74 KNGX CAMBDGE 23:42 Cancelled
    Service cancelled due to a. shortage of train crew.
    [...]
    1C93 CAMBDGE KNGX 23:58 Cancelled
    Service cancelled due to a. shortage of train crew.
     
  24. tsr

    tsr Established Member

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    The Tube was very badly affected in places. At one point the situation on the Victoria Line was looking akin to what happened to Thameslink... just underground!

    That’s not at all what happened.

    They’re good in the winter, except the saloon heating, which can be abysmally unreliable.

    At least one uncontrolled evacuation occurred in the area. Can’t confirm if it was the train pictured, but I strongly suspect it was. At least two other trains had major disorder reported onboard.

    The whistling is probably a dodgy rubber door seal or one of the emergency hopper windows not being locked shut properly.

    Yes, LNR were accepting TL tickets, though I seem to recall that this took a while to get on the website.

    It is not done less often because it’s now an Abellio TOC. There is no real link there. GTR ask for LNR to accept their tickets regularly, and it’s virtually never refused. Only the long distance operators (LNER and VTWC) tend to occasionally refuse to accept GTR tickets, but that’s changing, since LNER have been through a bit of a bad patch and had to ask for a lot of help themselves.

    Thameslink service recovery was astonishingly good. Virtually the whole service startup was flawless after about 0500 on Saturday, with just a few Sutton/Wimbledon cancellations to start with.

    The only major issue for much of the day was a 20mph speed restriction through Clayton Tunnel - even the major trespass issue at Wimbledon was cleared up quickly.

    I am told that most of the controllers worked 16 hour shifts on Friday/Saturday night in order to pull it off... hats off to them (HM Government have sent thanks...)

    It’s largely down to inflexible driver contracts and rostering. Although some drivers had to book on later today after finishing later last night.
     
  25. 717001

    717001 Member

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    Hadn’t realised quite how unlucky the 0952 passengers were - ie they should have arrived at Kings Cross before the shut down occurred.
     
  26. pint

    pint New Member

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    First post on here, so please be gentle...

    Powercuts, rare that they are ( at the moment) can happen, but why is the rail network so vulnerable???
    if a train loses power then the staff/crew on board should be able to restart it, not some remote technician - what the hell is going on when what should be basic systems are so complex??
     
  27. ExRes

    ExRes Established Member

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    Rather than everyone queuing up to blame the railway, perhaps those whizz kid, cannot do wrong, always perfect computer experts should have to explain why they left such an enormous hole in their system, in my experience any computer system is always more complicated than it needs to be in order to keep the power within the IT department
     
  28. rogercov

    rogercov Member

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    I'll try to be gentle!
    As far as I can deduce, based on the discussion so far, it was not as simple as a train losing power.
    This event was unusual in that the loss of generating capacity in the National Grid caused the mains frequency to drop to around 48.9Hz or below. This is well outside the allowed/agreed tolerance. This triggered some controlled power disconnections in some parts of the country but as far as I know, traction current on main lines was affected only briefly, if at all. There were some signalling problems but only temporary ones.
    Most trains carried on running. DC lines were unaffected. Most trains on the ECML and MML would not have been affected by this power disturbance, other than getting stuck behind those that were affected.
    Speculation so far is that the initial drop in mains frequency may have caused the computer on board the newer 700 and 717 units to interpret this as a far more serious fault, which was difficult for the driver to recover from with a normal reset procedure.
    If this is the case, then the manufacturers will learn from it and update the software to tolerate this scenario. I'm guessing that it's not something they tested as they did not think it would happen.
    A computer is only as good as the people who programmed it and those who specified the requirements!
    If this is the reason, and it's still to be confirmed, there will be a battle between National Grid (who should not have allowed the mains frequency to drop so low) and Siemens (who should have programmed the trains to be more tolerant).
     
  29. rogercov

    rogercov Member

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    I'd better correct this one before anyone accuses me of being unkind to Siemens.

    There was probably no requirement for them to make the trains more tolerant. No doubt they designed the software to a rigorous specification - no more, no less - so that if there were a change in requirements, they could make more money out of us.

    However, I presume all AC traction is synchronised with the Grid (I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong). If that's the case, it's interesting that the Bombardier 710s, despite all their earlier software problems, carried on running throughout this event.
     
  30. Walter Whigham

    Walter Whigham Member

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    It is also pertinent to remind ourselves that the inferior Siemens product was foisted upon us by the Department of Transport, at the expense of the Bombardier bid to build the rolling stock which was rejected.
     

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