Southern "Real-Time" PID Message

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blotred

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This morning whilst waiting in queue of trains from Clapham Junction to Balham, I noticed on the (Class 455) saloon PIDs the following message (roughly, from memory):

New: Delays to London bound services due to a passenger taken ill at Clapham Junction, stopping services to London Victoria may not call at Wandsworth common or Battersea Park 14/03 0830

I was wondering, is this message automatically triggered from some centralised source (like Control), or does the driver manually input it?

Also, is this a new thing, or a seldom used feature put into use today?

I have not seen a message like this before, and I always value up-to-date service messages like these (I think they are pretty valuable at least), so I was just curious as to its origin.
 
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HarleyDavidson

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It's PIDD and it's sent from control and it shouldn't be there, someone made a mistake. It's part of the Tyrell system (staff only information).
 

Marvin

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There I was, all ready to congratulate a TOC on actually providing useful information to passengers, and the very first reply to the thread is that it shouldn't have happened!

It seems to me that if this is something that can be done, then it should be done - what harm can come from letting passengers know what's going on?
 

talldave

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Being Southern, I would have expected it to take 20 working days to get there ;)
 

tsr

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It's PIDD and it's sent from control and it shouldn't be there, someone made a mistake. It's part of the Tyrell system (staff only information).

Certainly isn't a mistake. Live information is being rolled out to onboard CIS as and when needed. It's already happened several times on this and other Southern stock. The wording is almost exactly the same as what conductors were told to announce this morning. Obviously not many Southern Metro services operated by 455s have conductors, so it was sensible to upload the same thing to be displayed automatically on this occasion. There were at least two semi-fast Metro services stranded by the passenger illness incident (pax taken ill on a train on the Up Fast at Clapham Jn in the height of the AM peak) so it may even have reached exactly the right train, too.

There I was, all ready to congratulate a TOC on actually providing useful information to passengers, and the very first reply to the thread is that it shouldn't have happened!

It seems to me that if this is something that can be done, then it should be done - what harm can come from letting passengers know what's going on?

It is useful and it's part of a range of recent innovations, including uploading similar data to onboard PIS systems about upcoming engineering work, faster work phones for station staff and conductors, and a trial of extra mobile apps to provide information for said phones. Hopefully you should see this happening more often now. The specific team in Control at the ROC today have been very good at sending out information, too, from what I can see.

One thing we can say for definite is that the driver is not the one updating this system, and in fact customised onboard text input has been disabled on all but a couple of rogue units (those being diesels, too, IIRC). This is generally not something a driver would think about distracting themselves with anyway. It's likely that on a 455 the driver didn't even know what the system was showing, but just heard a chime and possibly saw a generic message on their PIS console.
 
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Mojo

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Certainly isn't a mistake. Live information is being rolled out to onboard CIS as and when needed.

It is useful and it's part of a range of recent innovations, including uploading similar data to onboard PIS systems about upcoming engineering work, faster work phones for station staff and conductors, and a trial of extra mobile apps to provide information for said phones.

I noticed information scrolling on a Southern train the other day that mentioned something about a good service on London Underground, London Overground and the DLR. After the message was a comma and 16:22, which I'm assuming is the time the message was last updated. This was on a train at about a quarter to nine! It certainly wasn't information presented in the approved format used by TfL; I suppose as they are not TfL they can do what they want!
 

maniacmartin

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My Southern train this morning had a message about delays on the Circle and H&C London Underground lines, followed by a comma and a time about 5 minutes in the past. It'd be better if they put "Last updated on " so it doesn't look like the current time!
 

blotred

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Certainly isn't a mistake. Live information is being rolled out to onboard CIS as and when needed. It's already happened several times on this and other Southern stock. The wording is almost exactly the same as what conductors were told to announce this morning. Obviously not many Southern Metro services operated by 455s have conductors, so it was sensible to upload the same thing to be displayed automatically on this occasion. There were at least two semi-fast Metro services stranded by the passenger illness incident (pax taken ill on a train on the Up Fast at Clapham Jn in the height of the AM peak) so it may even have reached exactly the right train, too.



It is useful and it's part of a range of recent innovations, including uploading similar data to onboard PIS systems about upcoming engineering work, faster work phones for station staff and conductors, and a trial of extra mobile apps to provide information for said phones. Hopefully you should see this happening more often now. The specific team in Control at the ROC today have been very good at sending out information, too, from what I can see.

One thing we can say for definite is that the driver is not the one updating this system, and in fact customised onboard text input has been disabled on all but a couple of rogue units (those being diesels, too, IIRC). This is generally not something a driver would think about distracting themselves with anyway. It's likely that on a 455 the driver didn't even know what the system was showing, but just heard a chime and possibly saw a generic message on their PIS console.

Thanks for the detailed response tsr, much appreciated.
I am glad to see Southern going in the right direction w.r.t. up to date service information.
 

tds42

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Is this only on 455s at the moment or is this something available on all trains now?
 

tsr

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Is this only on 455s at the moment or is this something available on all trains now?

I've only ever seen it on 171/377/455 stock, but I believe it could be done on other Southern stock too. Unsure about the rest of GTR.

Also not sure about other TOCs than GTR.

Im not sure you're right with that, however, carry on.

Indeed. Note my post above.
 

tsr

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Since the 1990s Hamburg's U-Bahn control centre have had the ability to push long-line PAs onto all their trains. A useful similar progression.

Absolutely. It is also less obtrusive than a PA announcement, though still perfectly usable. You can do PA announcements remotely with GSM-R, or at least in theory - I believe it's happened, but I've never had it occur on any train I've been on (and that's a lot of trains!).
 

SpacePhoenix

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You can do PA announcements remotely with GSM-R, or at least in theory - I believe it's happened, but I've never had it occur on any train I've been on (and that's a lot of trains!).

Probably very useful on DOO trains if the driver is incapacitated for whatever reason
 

Carntyne

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Probably very useful on DOO trains if the driver is incapacitated for whatever reason

That's what it was originally intended for I think, but NR Control now have GSMR terminals to do the same thing during major disruption, it barely happens though unfortunately.
 

tds42

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Absolutely. It is also less obtrusive than a PA announcement, though still perfectly usable. You can do PA announcements remotely with GSM-R, or at least in theory - I believe it's happened, but I've never had it occur on any train I've been on (and that's a lot of trains!).

Not a train admittedly, but I've heard a message on a TFL bus that was sent out over ibus from centrecomm. At first I thought the driver's radio had been patched incorrectly on the bus or something then realised it was advice for passengers as emergency gas works had closed a major road causing bus diversions
 

HarleyDavidson

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Absolutely. It is also less obtrusive than a PA announcement, though still perfectly usable. You can do PA announcements remotely with GSM-R, or at least in theory - I believe it's happened, but I've never had it occur on any train I've been on (and that's a lot of trains!).

Guildford panel does it quite regularly, especially during service disruption and there's multiple platform alterations and especially when connections are tight and there may not be another train over that route for a considerable time.

This is completely the polar opposite of Wimbledon & Woking, where getting information out of them is like getting blood out of a stone.:roll:
 

MrB

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Absolutely. It is also less obtrusive than a PA announcement, though still perfectly usable. You can do PA announcements remotely with GSM-R, or at least in theory - I believe it's happened, but I've never had it occur on any train I've been on (and that's a lot of trains!).

This might give the driver a shock! Hearing someone else doing an announcement other than the guard!

Or do they get notice that there will be an announcement over GSM-R?
 

HarleyDavidson

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The GSM-R does a chime noise instead of the standard ringing noise and it comes up with PA Announcement (IIRC) with signalbox name under it.

You also get other noises for General Broadcasts, REC and the fart in the bath noise for loss of network.
 
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