Southern DOO: ASLEF members vote 79.1% for revised deal

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IanXC

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I believe the below is the text of the agreed text. I'd scan or photograph it but the copy really isnt up to it.

ASLEF/Southern agreement said:
Driver Only Operation on Southern Services:
Agreement between GTR and ASLEF

1. Introduction
The arrangements in this document only apply to Southern service routes that, as at 21 August 2016, were operated with a conductor, and which were not subject to pre-existing agreements. It does not apply to Southern service routes that continue to operate with a conductor. GTR commits to not extend DOO on the Southern network beyond the routes shown in Appendix A of this document, without the clear agreement of ASLEF.

For serviced within the scope of this agreement, the driver is responsible for the control, movement and dispatch of the train. GRT Southern recognised the associated increased responsibility and workload that this creates for the driver. All services will normally operate with both a driver and an On Board Supervisor (OBS). As part of this DOO agreement, and to ensure coverage of services, GTR will guarantee to diagram and roster an OBS for all services that previously had a conductor on 21 August 2016. GTR reaffirms in commitment to maintaining an establishment based on a minimum ration of 2:1 OBSs to running turns for services covered by this agreement. This ration will be subject to regular reviews to ensure that this is sufficient.

GTR and ASLEF agree to work together to develop improved safe system of work. We confirm that changes to working methods will only be dealt with through the agreed collective bargaining procedures with the relevant trade unions.

2. Technology improvement
The parties acknowledge that some of the equipment, although meeting industry stands, is capable of updating. The intention of the Company is to provide the driver with an improved image quality in line with more recent compatible rolling stock. GTR agrees to develop further safe systems for DOO train operation in passenger service across the network, so far as is reasonably practicable. To this end the company will:

a) Provide an update programme to cab equipment for the DOO systems on the Class 377(1-5)
b) Agree a process to ensure appropriate monitoring of the effectiveness of the equipment in use and the cleaning and maintenance regimes.
c) Support this with an investment fund to process, over an agreed timescale, the delivery of progressive benefits to DOO. This will apply to the defined older equipment in use across the Southern network. Both parties acknowledge that while the current systems meet industry safety standards, the future investment programme will continue over a period of time, subject to the exigencies of the train service.
d) Prove regular programme updates to the DOO Joint Working Party.

The investment programme will require a period of system design and approval, with a trial unit having been available from the end of April 2017. Subject to a satisfactory trial, it is the intention of the Company to complete the roll-out across the applicable fleet by autumn 2019.

3. DOO JWP ASLEF/Southern
GTR and ASLEF agree to create a new Joint Working Party to work together to review the current and future concerns over the operation of DOO on Southern services. The parties will monitor existing arrangements and cooperate to monitor and discuss the future implementation of any changes to DOO on Southern, to include the rollout of agreed technology upgrades to improve existing systems. The purpose of this JWP is to ensure that there is alignment and co-operation between ASLEF and GTR.

3.1 Members of the JWP
The core membership of the JWP will be as follows:

ASLEF - 4 members (ASLEF to confirm membership at each meeting from a pool of 6)
GTR - 4 members (including 1 Train Operations, 1 Health & Safety, 1 Engineering)

This JWP is established under the Collective Bargaining arrangements in place on Southern, and, as such, it reports to and escaltes any issues to the Monthly Drivers' Company Council meetings, where they will be discussed and appropriate remedial action taken as required.

3.2 Remit

a) To monitor the operation of DOO on Southern, to include the identification and resolution of any issues.
b) To review the scope of the introduction of new technology and monitor the implementation of any such introduction.
c) To review the application and implementation of relevant industry guidance and instructions, and any proposed changes.
d) Both parties commit to active and positive dialogue in regard to the ORR Joint Improvement Plan.
e) To be the forum for the initial discussion of any changes to DOO on Southern.
f) The JWP will initial meet as required and then move to being bi-monthly. Thereafter, meetings will take place not less than quarterly.
g) The cope of the working party can be varied by agreement.

4. DOO in Degraded Working Situations (Control Instruction)
In degraded conditions, an OBS who holds relevant competency many assist int he dispatch of the train, if required and authorised by Control to do so; to undertake the relevant specific degraded safety critical task.

'Degraded working' is agreed as the following:
a) Unable to gain door interlock
b) In cab CCTV images missing
c) In cab CCTV images not suitable for dispatch.

In any of the above degraded circumstances, the driver must firstly contact Fleet Control, as per current procedures, and clearly report details of the issue.

4.1 Unable to gain door interlock
a) The driver and/or OBS to investigate any blockage of doors preventing door interlock.
b) In the event that the driver/OBS are unable to rectify the problem, then the reporting procedures as detailed int he Rule Book should be followed.

4.2 In cab CCTV image issue
Control will decide, based on specific circumstances, time, location, type of traction, alternative services etc one of the following courses of action:

a) To instruct the driver to follow the specified fault rectification procedure to see if the images return.
b) To run the train as booked, if an OBS with relevant competence is on board, to assist in the dispatch of the train at unstaffed stations. At staffed dispatch stations, normal DOO dispatch arrangements will apply.
c) To ask the driver to use degraded operation in accordance with the Rule Book.
d) To call the train at staffed dispatch stations only.
e) To terminate the train and remove from service.

5. OBS Competencies and Role in Emergencies
a) All newly employed OBSs from the date of this agreement will receive PTS training appropriate to this role; this training will be certified, monitored and maintained via the Company Competency Management System. This training to include all relevant emergency stop on train systems that could be encountered within the passenger areas and cab environment, such as 'one on the bell'. full knowledge of door egress/reset, passcom/reset, GSM-R REC functionality, use of stewards/door panel, door reset/isolation, fire on train and train evacuation procedures.
b) All OBSs shall hold the PTS certification appropriate to the role.
c) All other OBSs employed prior to the date of this agreement will be enabled and expected to gain PTS certification appropriate to the role. However, no one currently employed will be displaced as a consequence of this clause.

6. Running of DOO Services Booked to have an OBS (Control Instruction)
Both GTR and ASLEF recognise that there will be some occasions when, in order to maintain service resilience for the benefit of passengers and employees, services covered by this arrangement may run without an OBS. This will only happen when all other options of OBS provision have been fully exhausted. Where an OBS is not available, GTR's commitment is to provide on for part of the service at the earliest practicable opportunity.

Control will log all train services that run without an OBS as part of this agreement. The DOO Joint Working Party (JWP), established under the Collective Bargaining arrangements, will monitor the application of this part of the agreement and will report to and escalate any issues to the monthly Drivers' Company Council meeting, where they will be discussed and appropriate remedial action taken, as required.

6.1 Agreed reasons to run without an OBS
From 2 January 2018, the following are the circumstances when Control may require the service to run without the OBS. Before applying any of the reasons below, all other options for OBS provision must have been fully exhausted:

a) Late notification of OBS sickness (late notice is defined as less than two hours before booking on time). The granting of emergency leave or OBS absence at the start of duty.
b) OBS displaced by service disruption, late running and driver/OBS error from misreading diagrams of being left behind on a platform.
c) OBS unable to continue duty having commenced booked diagram, for example through sickness or having to leave the service to assist with a customer services incident / emergency. This will not include the issuing of tickets or penalty fares.

In all of the above circumstances, arrangements must be made to restore OBS presence to the service in question at the earliest opportunity.

7. Passengers with Accessibility Needs
If it the responsibility of station staff and on board customer service staff to assist passengers with reduced mobility in boarding and alighting Southern Services.

If the driver becomes aware of a passenger with reduced mobility waiting to board or alight from a service running without an OBS, they should inform the Signaller / Control, who will take responsibility for making appropriate arrangements to assist the passenger.

Appendix A - Scope of Southern Service covered by this Agreement
The following Southern service routes, which on 21 August 2016 were operated with a conductor, which were not subject to pre-existing agreements and are operated using in cab CCTV fitted rolling stock, are covered by this agreement:

a) Services to East Grinstead
b) Services between Reigate/Redhill and Tonbridge
c) Services between Horsham and Dorking
d) Services between Three Bridges/Horsham/Arun Valley
e) Brighton/Haywards Heath to East Coastaway
f) Brighton/Haywards Heath to West Coastaway

The routes listed above (a-f) will normally operate with diagrammed and rostered OBS, except when covered by the exceptions detailed in section 6.

Brighton Mainline (BML)
The BML is DOO in its totality. For clarity:

a) Victoria / London Bridge to Brighton services are DOO, but may operate with OBSs for reasons of customer services and operational efficiency
b) Where services part furn over the BML, these will normally operate with a diagrammed and rostered OBS. However the service can run without an OBS whilst it is on the BML. When it leaves the BML, the exceptions detailed in section 6 apply.
 
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Southern Dvr

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Southern have not achieved what they wanted to, they wanted to have the ability to run whatever trains they wanted without an OBS with somewhat ambiguous conditions. Now those conditions are made a lot clearer, furthermore they are written into T&Cs which mean that they can be legally challenged if they are abused. Currently the trains can run without the 2nd person and as was told to me when I questioned running a train without an OBS 'You haven't got one, you don't need, you can carry on without one' as of this agreement that is not the case. This is far from ideal, but its as good as were are going to have got considering our enemy was the Government.
 

High Dyke

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I don't see any mention of changes to the rostering agreements intertwined with the pay settlement for Aslef members. Such as flexibilty in working patterns including 3hr movement on Sundays, variable spares increased spare length up go 9.30 hrs and 3.5 hr movement Mon - Fri.

It could be argued the deal reached is a £14,000 bribe to accept a deal that had been rejected by members, against the wishes of union leaders. Still they've now made their bed... At thd end of the day it is still the travelling public that will suffer - even if train services run. Especially disabled and vulnerable passengers.

Interestingly enough was a comment in Brighton Argus from a former driver on the subject. Apologies for not being able to post a link.
 

Moonshot

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I don't see any mention of changes to the rostering agreements intertwined with the pay settlement for Aslef members. Such as flexibilty in working patterns including 3hr movement on Sundays, variable spares increased spare length up go 9.30 hrs and 3.5 hr movement Mon - Fri.

It could be argued the deal reached is a £14,000 bribe to accept a deal that had been rejected by members, against the wishes of union leaders. Still they've now made their bed... At thd end of the day it is still the travelling public that will suffer - even if train services run. Especially disabled and vulnerable passengers.

Interestingly enough was a comment in Brighton Argus from a former driver on the subject. Apologies for not being able to post a link.
Does anyone have hard facts and figures for how many ( expressed as a % ) wheelchair passengers fail to get on board a train of their choice due to the lack of a member of staff trained to deploy a ramp?
 

Southern Dvr

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Changes to the way the cover turns are dealt with are included in the deal. Driver's are now expected (where practical) to maintain route knowledge from previous depot or links. Changes to link structures. Rest Day Working agreement as opposed to previous ad-hoc arrangement. Just to mention some of them.

Disabled and vulnerable passengers do indeed lose out, I do not disagree at all. However with no agreement in place, they were losing out considerably more than they are now. Not pre 2016 levels I grant you, but the best we are going to get from this company and government.
 

Moonshot

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Changes to the way the cover turns are dealt with are included in the deal. Driver's are now expected (where practical) to maintain route knowledge from previous depot or links. Changes to link structures. Rest Day Working agreement as opposed to previous ad-hoc arrangement. Just to mention some of them.

Disabled and vulnerable passengers do indeed lose out, I do not disagree at all. However with no agreement in place, they were losing out considerably more than they are now. Not pre 2016 levels I grant you, but the best we are going to get from this company and government.
So in reality now that this deal has been agreed , the issue surrounding disabled and vulnerable passengers becomes a commercial one for the TOC.
 

Southern Dvr

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No. What happens now is that the drivers will be required to ensure they have an OBS, if they do not have an OBS they will need to contact control and establish where one will be meeting the train. Currently there is NO requirement for an OBS to be provided on any train, and when no OBS is provided there is no issue, no fine & no problem for the TOC. As I have said already, with this agreement in place there is now more of a problem for the TOC if an OBS is not provided.
 

Moonshot

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No. What happens now is that the drivers will be required to ensure they have an OBS, if they do not have an OBS they will need to contact control and establish where one will be meeting the train. Currently there is NO requirement for an OBS to be provided on any train, and when no OBS is provided there is no issue, no fine & no problem for the TOC. As I have said already, with this agreement in place there is now more of a problem for the TOC if an OBS is not provided.
ok ..which is pretty much what I was inferring in my last post. So what will happen in reality is assuming that this deal becomes widespread, a train cannot be cancelled due to the lack of a conductor.
 

Chrisgr31

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Does anyone have hard facts and figures for how many ( expressed as a % ) wheelchair passengers fail to get on board a train of their choice due to the lack of a member of staff trained to deploy a ramp?
Well the ORR suggest that between Fab and May 48 disabled people didnt board a train they were expecting to http://orr.gov.uk/news-and-media/pr...ern-trains-leads-to-travel-assistance-changes but the solution appears to be to require them to book, not that this release states that.
 

Domh245

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Well the ORR suggest that between Fab and May 48 disabled people didnt board a train they were expecting to http://orr.gov.uk/news-and-media/pr...ern-trains-leads-to-travel-assistance-changes but the solution appears to be to require them to book, not that this release states that.
48? in 4 month? Thats 1 every 3 days.......
That figure does seem quite low given the number of trains run daily, it'll be interesting to see if that forthcoming report has any indication of how that figure was arrived at, and if any such events were unreported. It'll also be interesting to see the first court case where someone argues that booking 24H in advance is against the Equality Act (which some people seem convinced will happen at some point) and what effect that'll have.
 

the sniper

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Agreement said:
7. Passengers with Accessibility Needs
If it the responsibility of station staff and on board customer service staff to assist passengers with reduced mobility in boarding and alighting Southern Services.

If the driver becomes aware of a passenger with reduced mobility waiting to board or alight from a service running without an OBS, they should inform the Signaller / Control, who will take responsibility for making appropriate arrangements to assist the passenger.
Wouldn't it have been prescient of ASLEF to have had the above occasions included in what the company should need to report to the DOO Joint Working Party? Might prove to be useful information.
 

physics34

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No. What happens now is that the drivers will be required to ensure they have an OBS, if they do not have an OBS they will need to contact control and establish where one will be meeting the train. Currently there is NO requirement for an OBS to be provided on any train, and when no OBS is provided there is no issue, no fine & no problem for the TOC. As I have said already, with this agreement in place there is now more of a problem for the TOC if an OBS is not provided.
What ststems will be in place for this though? In disruption its difficult in the best of times to ring control and get an answer. Do we block up platform 6 at east croydon for example while we are waiting for control to answer? Maybe 20 mins or more?

Is it the responsibilty of the OBS to tell the driver he/she is on board or is it the responsibilty of the driver to find out if an OBS is on board?
 

BestWestern

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I don't see any mention of changes to the rostering agreements intertwined with the pay settlement for Aslef members. Such as flexibilty in working patterns including 3hr movement on Sundays, variable spares increased spare length up go 9.30 hrs and 3.5 hr movement Mon - Fri.

It could be argued the deal reached is a £14,000 bribe to accept a deal that had been rejected by members, against the wishes of union leaders. Still they've now made their bed... At thd end of the day it is still the travelling public that will suffer - even if train services run. Especially disabled and vulnerable passengers.

Interestingly enough was a comment in Brighton Argus from a former driver on the subject. Apologies for not being able to post a link.
Could we have a tantalising glint of the drift of said comment?!
 

BestWestern

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What ststems will be in place for this though? In disruption its difficult in the best of times to ring control and get an answer. Do we block up platform 6 at east croydon for example while we are waiting for control to answer? Maybe 20 mins or more?
I hope so, yes! If it says you need one, then you need one. If one is not provided, presumably an excuse needs to be supplied by Control before you're authorised to proceed without? If obtaining said excuse takes 20 minutes, then so be it. Given how high profile the situation is, I don't imagine there'll be any criticism of Drivers ensuring they are following the agreed conditions.
 

pompeyfan

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My question has partly been asked, but not answered.

From what I understand it’s not uncommon for an OBS/Driver to work with 5+ members of the opposite crew member in a normal diagram. Let’s say a train has come down from Victoria Via the Arun Valley to Southampton, the OBS is due relief at Barnham but no one is there.... what happens? I assume the OBS would leave their key on, contact the driver that they have no relief, and then it’s up to the driver what to do?

Assuming it’s one of the conditions in section 6, the train continues to Southampton, turns around and comes back. Control have managed to be proactive, and a new OBS is able to meet the train at Havant on its return journey. One would assume it’s logical for the OBS to buzz up the driver and say I’m here now...? Does that sound about right?
 

Southern Dvr

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Yes, I would expect you to block up platform 6 at East Croydon or wherever. The delays this will cause will be sufficient to ensure that full OBS cover is provided. Should your OBS have gone sick within the 2 hours then they have plenty of time to notify you of this fact. Furthermore discussions will be held with Company Council to construct some sort of form to be submitted to both GTR & ASLEF detailing situations where there has been no OBS.

Once RMT get their head around the fact that strike days are not days where we can run without the OBS then I expect they will be calling plenty more strikes and doing nothing whatsoever for their lack of popularity anyway!
 

74A

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What would happen if an OBS was a no show ? i.e. They simply did not turn up for work and not contact Southern. This can happen (such as after holiday thought starting on Tuesday but should be there Monday) There doesn't seem to be anything to cover that eventually. Does that count as sickness ?
 

Southern Dvr

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Well if you are on the BML you would run to the last point at which one could join the service I would expect. The agreement makes clear one will be brought to the train at the soonest opportunity.
 

pompeyfan

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That would come under AWOL, which is covered under the exceptional circumstances, which makes me think that strikes would also be classed as AWOL.
 

otomous

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What ststems will be in place for this though? In disruption its difficult in the best of times to ring control and get an answer. Do we block up platform 6 at east croydon for example while we are waiting for control to answer? Maybe 20 mins or more?

Is it the responsibilty of the OBS to tell the driver he/she is on board or is it the responsibilty of the driver to find out if an OBS is on board?
Yeah usual grey areas designed to transfer responsibility away from management to front line staff - imagine control and signallers urging the driver to go and clear the platform while passengers are crowding the platform staff and the cab...ugly and so typical of the railway.
 

XDM

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Platform 6, or bidirectional 5, are the only east Croydon platforms that could be blocked in this way. In fact your East grinstead service could be moved to South Croydon, where there is an overtaking platform, to await instructions or an OBS.
No other trains need be delayed at Croydon to contact control.
East coastway can run DOO to Haywards Heath or even Wivisfield.
West coastway DOO to Preston Park, where they can be overtaken while you wait for control. And Horsham bound trains can DOO without fuss to Three Bridges where the delay calling control won't block other trains.
 

tsr

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Platform 6, or bidirectional 5, are the only east Croydon platforms that could be blocked in this way. In fact your East grinstead service could be moved to South Croydon, where there is an overtaking platform, to await instructions or an OBS.
No other trains need be delayed at Croydon to contact control.
East coastway can run DOO to Haywards Heath or even Wivisfield.
West coastway DOO to Preston Park, where they can be overtaken while you wait for control. And Horsham bound trains can DOO without fuss to Three Bridges where the delay calling control won't block other trains.
Oh good, the nonsense generator is back in action!

The East Grinstead line can be accessed from Platforms 2-6 at East Croydon, and there are timetabled moves from 3, 5 and 6. One would rather not hold a train anywhere, but East Croydon is the place to loop stuff if needed, even if it causes congestion. If you then decide to terminate a train on an ad-hoc basis, or hold it indefinitely, at South Croydon, you only have one remaining Slow platform to play with before you seriously start to muck up almost any Down train calling via Purley or running on either route via Oxted. You may also need to terminate the train in situ but of course (at most times of day) you’d then need to issue stop orders to call at South Croydon to pick up the stranded passengers.

As for trains being held at Wivelsfield (which is, by the way, how it’s spelt) or Preston Park, this is really all quite unlikely. Bidirectional signalling at these stations is not flexible enough to reasonably used for the purposes of holding trains waiting crew, and so you’ll be looking at trains waiting at Three Bridges or Haywards Heath - which, lest we forget, is where the OBSs’ diagrams will probably send them for crew changes anyway.
 

387star

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How will a driver know if a obs gave three hours notice for sickness and therefore there should be cover

Are obs given specific walking times to make trains ?
 

otomous

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Platform 6, or bidirectional 5, are the only east Croydon platforms that could be blocked in this way. In fact your East grinstead service could be moved to South Croydon, where there is an overtaking platform, to await instructions or an OBS.
No other trains need be delayed at Croydon to contact control.
East coastway can run DOO to Haywards Heath or even Wivisfield.
West coastway DOO to Preston Park, where they can be overtaken while you wait for control. And Horsham bound trains can DOO without fuss to Three Bridges where the delay calling control won't block other trains.
Love the casual writing off of blocking 5 or 6 at East Croydon, even though it will cause trains to back up causing snarl ups back to Norwood Junction and Selhurst. And what good is going to South Croydon to wait - the OBS still has to reach the train and it's far more likely that they will be local to East Croydon.
 

Bromley boy

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No. What happens now is that the drivers will be required to ensure they have an OBS, if they do not have an OBS they will need to contact control and establish where one will be meeting the train. Currently there is NO requirement for an OBS to be provided on any train, and when no OBS is provided there is no issue, no fine & no problem for the TOC. As I have said already, with this agreement in place there is now more of a problem for the TOC if an OBS is not provided.
Presumably when joining and leaving a train the OBS cabs-to-cabs the driver? They're not dispatching you so how, otherwise, would you know whether one is on the train?

Having worked guarded trains at my TOC, you might have two or three different guards for different portions of a single trip, and I assume the OBS diagrams are similar.
 

infobleep

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ASLEF executive & Southern deserve a terrific pat on the back for the painstaking months they have spent negotiating. It must have been a very hard time for all of them. Well done. It is a deal which has satisfied most drivers & will satisfy almost all when the rewards roll in & the few 'worriers' realise the driving world is not much different.
It is a great day for the passengers, not only on Southern but throughout the railway eventually, because trains will run when otherwise they would have been cancelled for lack of a 'guard', & travellers, including hospital appointees & the old & young will no longer be left on cold windswept platforms.
The disabled will benefit too as most of their trips are to & from from staffed stations so if no guard/OBS turns up their train will still run.
Even former guards will gain because, if they like people, they will spend their time face to face with the public & not stepping down onto cold platforms in the rain & snow.
If they hate people, & some of the frequent anti DOO posters clearly despise passengers from their postings, they should be in a non person job like maintenance or cleaning.
Southern drivers & their reps have proved they are a wise & helpful lot. Well done to them & do not feel the tiniest bit guilty. You are not.
So if all the drivers with their sudden lump sum pay decide not to do much overtime, will there be no cancellations of trains next month?
 

HH

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"One British Rail v up to 25 different tocs, who all have a Managing Director, a Finance Dircetor, Operations Director, Customer Services Director, Fleet director as well as assistants for all of those, then you have route directors for each of the different routes each company runs, then there is all the head of departments for each group of employees, then you have numerous managers like driver standards managers, guards managers, station managers that is all for tocs, Then we have focs 4 or 5 of them who need who require Management at many different levels, and lets not forget the numerous and countless different infrastructure companies" Is that enough for you?
As I thought, precisely zero facts.

At the time of Privatisation BR had ToUs with MDs & FDs, etc. There were more ToUs than there are TOCs, ergo there are now less of then than there were under BR. Nor, if you go back further were there less managers. My father worked at BR all his life, retiring in the 90s and there were many office buildings that no longer exist. Whole departments (e.g. Work Study) that no longer exist. There are also far less Station Managers than there used to be under BR. There are more driver managers, but that's because there are a lot more drivers. As for Route Directors (or Area Managers as some TOCs use), similar roles existed under BR and will always exist - one Ops or Commercial Director cannot control the whole country.

Unlike you, I have carried out an analysis of manager to staff ratio for some TOCs and it compared very favourably with not only the still publicly owned bits of the railway, but actually with many other industries as well. Also, I saw the changes first hand during privatisation and while there were some small increases in roles such as revenue analysis, there were much bigger cuts in Finance and HR. Since then change (both up and down) has largely been driven by increased services, government requirements and the use of new systems and the same factors would have affected BR, but each time a new franchise competition comes round management roles are scrutinised and savings made. I have twice run HQ departments and on both occasions the numbers were reduced, the first time substantially.

Freight companies are even leaner from what I've seen. Infrastructure companies generally don't just do rail work, so it would be impossible to compare. However, I would be very surprised if they had more managers than BR, simply because BR pretty much never made anybody redundant.
 
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