German driver happy to answer questions you may have on rail operation

Discussion in 'International Transport' started by BR111, 29 May 2019.

  1. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    Hello all,

    I am a train driver in Germany, who actually grew up in the UK, although have never really paid much attention to the UK system and what it's all about. Recently, however, I have taken a much larger interest in the British side of things, and while I would like to improve my knowledge by researching and being a member of this forum, I also understand that there seems to be a fair bit of interest in the system I know here. So I am happy to answer any questions you may have, dispel rumours or explain things you might not have understood from browsing the web, etc. It can even be questions about me. I won't go into too much detail on the personal questions, but don't worry too much so long as it doesn't break the rules - I'll just answer the parts I'm comfortable with :smile:.

    It might be worth noting that as of now I do have very little knowledge of the UK rail system - including industry terms, so bear with me if you need to explain a term to me. It's likely I know the German version, and they just don't directly translate, or maybe there isn't even a german version as it doesn't exist in the system I know.
     
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  3. Ken H

    Ken H Established Member

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    What type of trains do you drive? IC, D trains or S-bahn?
     
  4. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    Regional trains. I am qualified to drive the Electric Locos Br 111 and 146 along with control cars 761 up to 766 including the "Wittenberger", EMUs 440 and 442, and "powered control car" 445 (contradictory, I know, but it was sold to us like that from Bombardier.) The 445 is essentially a control car with everything a locomotive needs, where you have one on each end and have 2010 Double Decker coaches in the middle. Unlike EMUs, the middle coaches have the standard coupling you would see on any other loco hauled train (called "Schraubenkupplung"), so you could shunt additional coaches in or out without requiring the workshop (I'm pretty sure this isn't the right term, please correct me - Garage also doesn't sound right), but in practice the sets are left alone. The 445 can also actually act as a control car, where on the other end you would put an Engine, and this is also not done in practice. For those wanting pictures, you can google "DB Br xxx" and you should find them easily enough. For the control cars, look up "Steuerwagen BA xxx". I am also allowed to drive in LZB (our in-cab signalling system) although in reality I have very little contact with it. Maybe 2 or 3 times a month.

    Under instruction during training on numerous occasions I have also driven the electric engine 101, Diesel engines 218 and 245, EMU's 423 and 425, DMU's 612, 628 and 642, and I have been on cab rides in the electric engines 120 and 183 'Taurus', and all ICE trains, but am not qualified to operate any of these by myself.
     
  5. TheEdge

    TheEdge Established Member

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    How does your signalling actually work?!?

    I've tried again and again to understand entry, exit, block signals, Hp0, 1, 2 and all that and I really don't understand how it works or how you know where you are meant to be going. I also can't fathom how you manage to drive with the variable speed limits. PZB also seems to be a beast the makes our equivalents, AWS and TPWS, look simple and shockingly basic!
     
  6. Ken H

    Ken H Established Member

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    Depot. or Train Maintenance Depot (TMD). silent t - its a french word.

    The idea of having a loco, some coaches with standard couplers and driving trailer is one we should look at here, as opposed to MU's for everything. Its very common elsewhere in Europe.
     
  7. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    This is quite a big topic, but once understood it is very simple and there is almost no room for error. How fast we are allowed to go through junctions is all part of a topic known as the "Anschließender Weichenbereich", which is an umbrella term for everything to do with speed limits in junctions and Stations (Bahnhof in rail jargon actually explicitly refers to a part of track that is seperate from the main line, and is confined to the space between the two entry main signals. I'd be extremely surprised if there was no british equivalent, but station seems to just be a term for somewhere there is a platform).

    There are 2 golden rules to follow, and that's already a big chunk of the whole deal.
    1) From an entry signal or "in between" main signal, the speed restriction is valid until the next main signal, or a scheduled stop before this main signal (in case of multiple, the last one).
    2) From an exit or block signal, the speed restriction is valid until the last junction of the signal.

    Do decide what function a main signal has, we have an overview of the route, along with where everything is, including the location of the last junction where applicable, but of course route knowledge also plays a part. Hp 1 means we can proceed at line speed. Hp 2 (alone) means we can proceed at 40 km/h, and this would be a speed restriction as a part of the "anschließender Weichenbereich". This speed can be altered with another signal, Zs 3, which is most commonly an electric signal but can also be a board (common on exit signals). From speeds between 10 and 60, Hp 2 is given, anything above is signalled with Hp 1. Hp 1 then means all the junctions are straight and so therefore there is no reason to reduce speed.

    An example: The line is straight, but my train is diverging onto another route after a stop. So my entry signal would be Hp 1, with a warning signal showing Vr 2 (means the next main signal shows Hp 2). Hp 1 means I can continue at line speed (as a maximum obviously; I still need to stop at the platform!). After stopping and closing the doors, my exit signal is showing Hp 2, we can also throw in a Zs 3 that shows a "6". In Germany, all speed restrictions are that number multiplied by 10, so in this case I am allowed to proceed at 60 km/h. Eventually, I pass the last junction that belongs to the signal, and then I can proceed at the line speed again,

    Another example: Pulling into a main station, my entry signal shows Hp 1 with a Zs 3 showing an "8". This means I can proceed with 80 km/h until the next main signal or my scheduled stop, whichever comes first. In this case, it is the scheduled stop, so after stopping I need a new signal. As it's a big station, there is an "in between" signal at the end of the platform, showing Hp 2. This gives me permission to go at 40 km/h until the next main signal, which is the exit signal. This shows Hp 1. Hp 1 means I can proceed at line speed, even if there are more junctions (as they are all set to a straight route that accomodates the line speed), so as soon as my entire train has passed the Hp 1, I can continue at line speed.

    As for how we know where we are going, this is also all in the plan for the train number. Every train that I know of except the austrian locomotives, has a display dedicated entirely to showing this plan, although we do have Books in the cab with printed versions (that are a little more messy because all sorts of variables are included that can be filtered out with the electronic version, showing only information relevant to your train), and also since 2 years we have tablets where we can also download the train plan with about 30 seconds of work should the need arise. This includes to an extent the aspects certain signals must show to ensure we are on the right line. Route knowledge of course also plays a role.

    Honestly, this is rather hard to explain without some kind of diagram or video to reference, and it would be easier if you had a plan of the route too. If there's enough demand, I wouldn't mind making a video on the matter however. There's a rather accurate train sim for the German system called "ZuSi 3" where I could easily demonstrate this, even in situations with signal failure. I hope this at least cleared something up, but I don't blame you at all if you're still confused!
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2019
  8. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    It is becoming more rare in Germany, although new loco hauled passenger trains are still being ordered - especially InterCitys. Originally it was thought a shorter ICE 4 train would be ordered to take on what existing loco hauled InterCity trains do, but this was scrapped and now more Loco hauled trains have very recently been ordered by Talgo, and for routes with a slower line speed, Double Decker coaches hauled by Br 146 and 147 are also very new and starting to appear more and more in service. To an extent new loco hauled trains are being ordered for regional services, but MU's seems to be where it's heading long term.
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2019
  9. 30907

    30907 Established Member

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    On the meaning of Bahnhof, the nearest equivalent in UK use is "station limits" which is the bit protected by the station signals. However, this only really applies where traditional Absolute Block (box-to-box, often semaphore) signalling is in use, and that is slowly disappearing. Gross oversimplification of course!

    There is a very good pocketsized book from GeraMond "Signalbuch der deutschen Bahn" but you'd need reasonable German!

    I think your excellent English has had a blip, and you meant from Talgo! AFAIK the train ordered is fixed-formation, so more like an ECML Mk4 set than a traditional loco-hauled.
     
  10. 43096

    43096 Established Member

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    Interestingly, the full 12 digit EVN for the 445s and 446s starts “91” which is the code for an electric locomotive. That is explained by what you have about how they are used.
     
  11. MarcVD

    MarcVD Member

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    This is also the operating model foreseen for the new SNCB M7 stock. There will be normal cars, driving cars, and power cars, and they will be all possible combinations between them and with series 18 electric locomotives.
     
  12. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    Um...yeah...woops! Renfe building trains would be pretty big news. Thanks for correcting - I've updated it now
     
  13. AlexNL

    AlexNL Established Member

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    In a few words: you don't.

    The German signalling system works on a different principle: instead of telling you where you're going (route signalling), it tells you how fast you're allowed to go instead (speed signalling). This is the system being used almost everywhere, the UK is one of the very few railway systems that use route signalling.

    Of course German drivers do know where they're going thanks to the timetable (and the Ebula system) but the infrastructure doesn't directly tell them. It can be inferred though, see the Hp1/Hp2 examples above.
     
  14. GusB

    GusB Established Member

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    I know very little about German railways, but the first version of Train Simulator I bought was bundled with the Munich - Garmisch - Parternkirchen route. It was immensely frustrating to deal with PZB signalling, and even after I'd done a bit of reading on the subject, I still kept finding myself brought to a halt because of some rule I'd overlooked, with constant buzzers sounding. It's a very unforgiving system; I kept thinking "what on earth have I done wrong now?" - but I suppose that's no bad thing, really.
     
  15. TheEdge

    TheEdge Established Member

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    Thanks for the in depth explanation. It still seems fairly confusing but then I drive under British signals which obviously being directional rather than speed based are fundamentally different. Although the explanation that booked stops also impact the speeds allows fills in a gap I didn't get. A big thing difference is I suppose "Anschließender Weichenbereich". As has been said we don't really have anything like that, we do have station limits but they don't function quite the same as it appears to be in Germany and don't really involve junctions, except under older signalling systems.

    So, I'm in Munich in a few weeks. Who do I talk to to get a cab ride? :lol:
     
  16. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    Correct - the EBuLa is vital to any train journey, and without some form of "Timetable" whether that be a printed version or electronic, you are not allowed to set off at all. The system even allows you to drive on routes without any route knowledge - this is only done in exceptional circumstances, such as a sudden route closure where trains have to be directed. Some routes aren't allowed to be driven on at all without route knowledge, but for those that are you cannot exceed 100 km/h anyway on main lines. But even so, when we do route learning, we also look at common reroutes that can occur, so that we've at least seen it before. The "Timetables" we have also have some of these alternative routes included, so it's just a few buttons or pages away. This probably seems like a crazy concept for someone used to the british system, but it's still a rather rare occurance and of course you would drive very carefully if the situation arose. But pretty much everything you need to know is in the timetable, and there are distance markers approximately every 200 meters, which allows you to always know where you are and what's coming up and when. The distance markers also serve a purpose when it comes to Passenger Emergency Brake overriding - if the distance markers have orange reflectors on top and on bottom, it means it's not a safe place to stop the train (tunnel, long bridge, that kind of thing)- in this case we have to override the brake until the orange reflectors are no longer there.

    It is quite a bit to get your head around, but even drivers with 30 years experience occasionally get stopped by the system. Of course not because they understand it, but because they maybe weren't paying full attention or just forgot in the moment what was going on. It just shouldn't be a frequent occurance if you're driving professionally (but that would be a given in my opinion).

    Cab rides have become a lot harder to get recently, although if you're already a rail worker it is probably easier to organise. I'm not sure entirely who to contact, I guess you'd have to contact DB directly and ask how it could be organised.
     
    Last edited: 2 Jun 2019
  17. ooo

    ooo Member

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    How much of the German network is driver only?
     
  18. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    All of Fernverkehr, so the intercity and intercity express trains (the white ones) are not allowed to operate without other staff on board. What I believe to be translated as Conductors and the Guard (Zugbegleiter and Zugführer, aka Zugchef) take full control of door closing, and are entirely responsible for what happens inside the train, including preparing forms such as the document that describes our brake potential, door information and other factors such as train length (Wagenliste and Bremszettel). S-Bahn services are the other extreme; they are almost entirely driver only, but that depends what city you look at. S-Bahn Mitteldeutschland (centered around Leipzig and Halle) are more or less Regional trains and they usually have a ticket inspector on board, but if you look at Munich, there is a 0% occupation (they have a few disguised ticket inspectors doing spontaneous checks to prevent people from abusing the system, but they're not that common and usually are only on the train for a few stops).

    For regional trains, it varies. Where I am currently situated, almost every train is occupied with some kind of inspector/guard. But where I was training we had routes where only 25% of trains were scheduled to have someone on board (this means that if someone was ill, they might not have even replaced the member of staff), other routes were 100%. I couldn't really give you a figure here, as I haven't seen much of the railway in the north and the east, but I would guestimate that about 70 - 80% of all regional trains have at least a ticket inspector on board, and they don't seem to be going anywhere. But on regional trains, even if you have someone that would share the status of a guard in the UK, there is very little in todays world that they can still do. Most duties are down to you as the driver.
     
  19. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Is this seen as a big thing (in the UK a SPAD - signal passed at danger - very much is) or is it just "one of those things" so you just continue with a short delay and perhaps log the incident for statistical purposes?
     
  20. TRAX

    TRAX Member

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    I don’t think BR111 is talking about anything as major as a SPAD - one would think this event would be frowned upon in Germany at least as much as in the UK.
    I think, but I might be wrong, BR111 was thinking of mishaps in the likes of not acknowledging a PZB magnet, for example.
     
  21. superjohn

    superjohn Member

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    One thing I have noticed on my travels in Germany is the number of signal boxes. All but the smallest of stations seems to have an associated box and they look well maintained and open.

    Are they actively controlling signals in the vicinity or is there more centralised control as I would expect?
     
  22. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    With regards to the dispatch process of ICE vs Regional Express vs InterCity how do they differ in the methods from train stopping in the platform and releasing the doors to doors closing and train departing from the platform?
     
  23. AlexNL

    AlexNL Established Member

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    If the box looks well maintained and open, you can assume that someone is working in there to control train traffic.

    The German railway network has more than 3000 boxes in operation, many of which are still lever-and-wire-based!
     
  24. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    It depends what happened. If PZB does force you to stop, after you have come to a halt you must contact the signaller and tell him what happened to ensure you haven't overlooked anything (even if you're 100% sure you know the reason and it was human error with no danger), and if both parties are confident that a Signal requiring a stop was not passed without permission, then you may continue your journey with the signallers permission. So long as it wasn't caused by a red signal, and you haven't been collecting them all day, that's usually the end of it.
    You are spot on - a signal passed at danger (Hp 0) is very serious and you are taken out of duty with immediate effect, with pretty much the only exception being that the signal was originally allowing you to pass, but changed back to red due to a signal fault or the signaller turned it back to red without warning as a preventative measure (i.e. another train has passed a signal at danger and it might be blocking your track)

    This varies greatly, but from the signals you are getting you can usually tell what kind of signal box is being used. Highly used main lines are usually controlled centrally, but there's still a lot of local signallers active. There's always been a bit of push and pull in terms of what Germany wants to do with its signallers in the future. It was planned that eventually everything would be controlled centrally across a few signal "boxes" across the country, but the last I've heard they're toying with the idea of just modernising everything and keeping the signallers in their respective locations. I'm not too informed on the matter, but knowing where your signallers are and what part of line they are responsible for is of course a part of route knowledge, and I have to say in my area it's very varied. On one route we still have an ancient signalbox with what would be semaphore signals in the UK, and until recently that number was 2.

    For ICE trains, the driver is not involved at all - they only unlock the doors, and when the on board staff have finished their platform duties, the Guard will have either given a signal which in the UK would be "right away" (Zp 9), or more commonly since about 2-3 years ago, they call the driver to inform them the doors are shut, the driver must finalise the lock and is allowed to proceed.

    So: Driver opens doors, Guard and other on-board staff do their platform duties, Guard whistles, doors are closed, the other on-board staff signal the guard that their section is clear, everyone gets back in the train, when the Guard's door is shut, he calls the driver (alternatively, the Guard activates the Right Away Signal, and then gets on the train)


    For InterCity trains, where a Guard is there and still has his Guard duties, he is still responsible for the closing of the doors, but the driver must co-operate and look on the platform to see what is going on. It works like this: Driver unlocks doors, on-board staff perform platform duties, Guard whistles and closes the doors (in the cab, a voice will now say "Schließvorgang eingeleitet" which means "Door closing procedure commenced", where the driver must now also lock the doors (it's a turnable switch, not buttons like in the UK, so he brings it back to 0)) and look out of the window/use mirrors or monitors to assess the Guard's commands, the other on-board staff report to the guard, the Guard thenn gives the Driver "Right away" (Zp 9), either using a platform signal, or a green light/handheld 'disk'; similar to something you see in the UK but the disc is a green ring with a white circle in the middle.


    For regional trains, it depends on the door securing system used. For TB 0 (doors are either unlocked or locked; even a platform side cannot be selected. Requires a Guard, only used if SAT or TAV fail and on n-Wagen services, which are also almost extinct) and SAT (very similar to what I presume to be the UK system - a side for the doors can be selected while the other remains locked) it is essentially the same as for InterCity trains, except there is only one member of staff and they do not have the rank of guard, and so they are not allowed to give the Signal "Right Away", only signal that the doors are closed. They do this by holding up a white light or an orange dis (see here for an example of both disks), which means the driver must also check to ensure the doors he can see are closed, which is also done by looking out or using monitors or mirrors. SAT is uncommon, but not very rare. From the trains I drive, it is the trains hauled by Br 111 (rarely Br 146) with the 'old' (built 1994 - 1997) Double decker carriages.

    More modern regional trains use TAV (everything I drive excluding the '97 carriages. Our 2003 and 2010 double decker coaches have TAV, and so does the 111. EMU's and DMU's are also almost exclusively TAV, where the only exception I can think of is the DMU 612 which also operates SAT). TAV is based on the concept that the door is clever enough to know if anything is stuck in between due to the addition of a light barrier that isn't used with SAT (although the rubber on the inside of the doors has air pressure in it, and it can detect if something is trapped inside, although it would have to be a noticeable change). TAV doesn't require any checking - all that happens is that the driver takes back the door release (different to closing the doors - in TAV the doors close automatically if it doesn't detect anything in the light barrier for a few seconds) when he is confident that the passenger exchange has been completed - either by looking out or checking monitors/mirrors. When the door system says that all the doors are closed, the journey can continue. Should the driver decide to force the doors to close (objects in way of the light barrier for example), the light barrier can be temporarily disabled but if this is done, then essentially the train is dispatched identically to SAT - if there is no other member of staff on board, the driver must then check all doors (only via sight however) are really closed. If there are no/insufficient resources available to see all the doors from the cab, then the driver must leave the train and walk on the platform until he sees every door.


    For finishing notes:
    I did keep referring to the driver as "He". Of course it can be a female driver too!
    TB 0 = Türblockierung ab 0 km/h (door locking at speeds above 0 km/h)
    SAT = Selbstabfertigung durch Triebfahrzeugführer (quite hard to directly translate - I suppose this means Door closing system with responsibility at the driver)
    TAV = Technikbasiertes Abfertigungsverfahren (Tech-based door closing system)
    SST = Seitenselektive Türsteuerung (side selective door control - not explicitly mentioned in my explanation but it is what the IC and ICE trains use)

    Yep, lever-and-wire would be "Mechanischer Stellwerk" here. It's still in operation on one of my routes, but for the most part it's a modern, central signalling "box" (Elektronischer Stellwerk). A lot is still done with a "Drucktaster Stellwerk", however, and these aren't likely to go anywhere in the near, or indeed semi-distant future.
     
    Last edited: 2 Jun 2019
  25. TheEdge

    TheEdge Established Member

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    How are German depots (as in driver depots/bases) set up?

    Are you based at a station or maintenance depot? Do new drivers spend their time on only regional and S-Bahn services before moving up to IC and ICE? Or does anyone drive anything? Do you have a wide variety of routes and traction each driver will drive?
     
  26. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Thanks for your answers - very comprehensive.

    In the UK that would be called DOO or Driver Only Operation, otherwise known as DCO or Driver Controlled Operation, a most controversial way of working as you will see if you look around the forum for mentions of it. In my understanding it can still be called DOO even if there is another member of staff on the train because the train can operate without them, and if they don't show up for any reason it generally will.

    In UK terms dispatch using only door sensors is an absolute no-no - the "Mk1 eyeball" has to be used to verify closure and nothing being trapped, be that via cameras or directly. I wonder have there been many "trap and drag" incidents caused by this?

    It's interesting that on ICE the guard can now close their door before giving the right away to the driver. This is UK practice, but many consider the older German practice of the guard's door remaining open until the train has left the platform to be safer, as they can see any issue that may occur and stop the train.

    Regarding being stopped by the PZB, for a UK comparison what happens if a train is stopped due to not acknowledging an AWS magnet for, say, a double yellow?
     
  27. BR111

    BR111 Member

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    Drivers and on-board staff are based at passenger stations (except for Cargo - they are based at shunting yards) - the vast majority of main stations will have a driver depot, but it definitely isn't limited to that. It also depends on which area you drive. Stations that have a regional depot for example might not have a long distance depot, which ties into your second question: DB Cargo, DB Regio and DB Fernverkehr are all seperated and you only drive the trains of the company you are in, but neither is seen as higher or lower than the other, meaning being a driver at DB Fernverkehr isn't necessarily 'progression' from being an S-Bahn driver, although most people from Fernverkehr didn't start there - this is because until not all too long ago they didn't actually train drivers and required you to have experience or were recruited internally, but due to lack of staff they have started external recruitment, and it is entirely possible to start your career at Fernverkehr. For the most part, however, you start off as a "Bereitsteller", which is someone who prepares trains for service from say the maintenance depot or a siding, shunts them to the platform and then hands the train over to another driver, and of course vice versa. This is done for approximately 2 years, but can be shorter/longer depending on demand. It's not unheard of that people decide they don't want to progress and drive the trains at speed - some people enjoy just shunting in the yard all day, although that isn't really a common thing.

    There's usually a big Building that's joined to the station - occasionally a seperate building but never further than a stone's throw away, where the dispatchers are, break/rest rooms are (in the UK sense - rooms you can rest in, but of course there are toilets too!), pidgeon hole, information room, that kind of stuff. That always used to be where you start and finish your shift but since we have been equipped with tablets, we can check for short term updates to routes/traction from there, and so are no longer required to start there but rather on the platform, saving DB a few minutes working time for us to get to the platform. The exception to this is if your shift starts and/or with you preparing/the opposite of preparing (for lack of a better term) a train for service.

    The routes and traction are entirely based on where you work. Some smaller driver depots might even see you just on one line with one train, but that's thankfully more of an exception. There will usually be a core set of routes and traction that are vital for a depot, and then a few lines that aren't as frequently driven, so not necessarily all drivers have it. This doesn't even have to be because it's not a busy route - if between City A and B most of the trains are driven by City B's drivers, then not as many drivers from City A need to be trained for it. Having said that, due to the signalling system of Germany, route knowledge isn't required to be nearly as in-depth as in the UK, and so being frugal about routes is rather rare - someone not driving something is 99% of the time based on the fact that they're not qualified for the train rather than the route, and there isn't any training for that particular train going on at present.

    Some Cities, like Köln and Mannheim, the S-Bahn is directly tied into the Regional transport and so drivers of Regio will be doing both. I believe Berlin, Hamburg, Hannover, Frankfurt, München and Stuttgart are the cities where S-Bahn has been seperated from Regio, which to be fair is most, but not all.

    Relying on sensors alone isn't something most drivers, me included, are keen on either. When TAV was brand new, it wasn't even necessary for any kind of check whatsoever! This was changed later because often groups, or even parents and children were being split from one another.

    For a train to be TAV qualified also requires there be nothing that someone could hold on to or get caught onto, e.g. a foldable step that doesn't completely retract into the train, so to be honest it is a very rare incident, but there have been and undoubtedly will continue to be accidents that could have been prevented if every door was checked before a departure - just doesn't seem to be enough for EBA (Eisenbahn Bundesamt, the people in charge of rail rules) to decide a change needs to be made.

    The Guard and other staff still can have their door open with SAT and SST on InterCity trains - most of them will also still follow this procedure. This is required on some stock with retractable doors with a door handle, as the air pressure to keep the doors closed takes a bit to build up so you can see if someone is still trying to get on or off while the train is moving, or even if someone/thing got caught on or in the door. On ICE trains the staff will still look out of the window during departure, but there's only so much you can see from that perspective.

    I'm not sure I understand your last question. Could you rephrase that a bit? I'm not sure what you're asking me.
     
    Last edited: 31 May 2019
  28. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Thanks for that :)
     
  29. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    How hard do you brake coming into stations? Is maximum (Full Service) braking routinely used for instance?
     
  30. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Sorry, I was asking other posters what would happen, as a comparison, if a UK driver failed to acknowledge the AWS for a signal not at danger, rather than that being for yourself.
     
  31. Randomer

    Randomer Member

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    Thanks for posting a very interesting thread.

    Do you know when the light barrier door obstruction sensors used in the TAV system were introduced? Do they get triggered very often on busy services by people standing close to the doors but not blocking them?

    Secondly do you know whether they have been retrofitted to older rolling stock?

    It is interesting reading the last few RAIB (Rail Accident Investigation Branch, the independent body who examines accidents or dangerous occurrences on or involving the railway for safety purposes) reports about trap and drag incidents* in the UK that the systems in use here can't detect thin objects such as a hand held vertically trapped in the door even in quite modern rolling stock but other more sensitive systems are still under investigation/development.

    * I.e. persons hand or scarf trapped in door when closed, object detection still allowing interlock and train setting off when person missed on visual check. An adult hand held vertically is under the thickness required for the obstacle detection to prevent interlock and allow the train to take power by the current standards (unless they have changed in the last year or so).
     

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