Train fails to stop at Pilning

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by ATW158Xpress, 23 Sep 2018.

  1. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

    Messages:
    4,611
    Joined:
    18 Jun 2015
    Where I am, most guards don’t bother making announcements on the rare occasions they’re rostered to work trains exclusively in DOO land anyway <(.

    I remember seeing one poking his head of a cab when I changed ends (having driven “up” in blissful silence) - my first thought was that a passenger had somehow got into a middle cab, until I realised he was in uniform !!!
     
    Last edited: 30 Sep 2018
  2. Dieseldriver

    Dieseldriver Member

    Messages:
    653
    Joined:
    9 Apr 2012
    In my experience, those Guards are the ones that will be most vocal about how important they are and how bad DOO is etc. They don't seem to realise that they are the ones doing their professional colleagues a total disservice.
    I'd be happy to see the back of the lazy, unprofessional and ignorant Guards and gain more of the pro active, professional and polite Guards that you know you can rely on in an emergency.
     
  3. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

    Messages:
    4,611
    Joined:
    18 Jun 2015
    Totally agree.

    A scenario I had earlier this evening, an elderly woman coming up to my window: “there’s a man smoking cannabis in the second coach”.

    Cue me saying “There’s nothing I can do about that, I’m afraid” and slamming the window shut.

    The last thing I’ll ever do is get involved in these kind of shenanigans. I’ll keep the door firmly shut at all costs. As a DOO driver I have enough on my plate already and could do without the distraction.

    A pro active second person on board might just dissuade these activities.
     
  4. theageofthetra

    theageofthetra Established Member

    Messages:
    3,134
    Joined:
    27 May 2012
    I'd have made this PA announcement. To the inconsiderate turd smoking weed on the train. You either leave the train now or you will be met at a place of maximum inconvenience to you by three very pissed off BTP who will be just delighted to be dragged out of a warm mess room to deal with your pig ignorant lack of basic social skills.
     
  5. Tom Quinne

    Tom Quinne Established Member

    Messages:
    1,269
    Joined:
    8 Jul 2017
    Is a fail to call a EM brake situation, I don’t think it is.

    Maybe if his attitude had been different earlier I would have cab to cab phoned him, but when your totally ignored...
     
  6. Tom Quinne

    Tom Quinne Established Member

    Messages:
    1,269
    Joined:
    8 Jul 2017
    Might be a little longer than, the old memory isn’t what it used to be.
     
  7. philthetube

    philthetube Established Member

    Messages:
    1,926
    Joined:
    5 Jan 2016
    I would make a pa requesting that any member of BTP or other police officer to make themselves know to the driver, that would stop it.
     
  8. ComUtoR

    ComUtoR Established Member

    Messages:
    6,336
    Joined:
    13 Dec 2013
    Location:
    UK
    As a Driver, yes. I would 100% use the EM brake if i thought I was going to overshoot. Happens during leaf-fall all the time. On the flip side, there are various posts where Guard route knowledge is discussed to be important. By your post you knew that the train was too fast for the platform. If a train was going 'too fast' would you not suspect something was wrong and intervened ? Isn't that part of the Guards job to act if they suspect something is wrong ? At what point is an assumption of a simple fail to call a small hole in the cheese ? I remember a RED video where there was a derailment because the Guard had a suspicion but made an assumption and failed to act.

    So because you were ignored, you allowed an incident to happen and now seem a little smug about it ? Attitude or not. Our job is to get the unit from point A to point B without incident and as safely as possible. Somewhere along the way, we have to be mindful of the passengers. No matter how we feel abut our colleagues, we still have to be professional.

    I had a Guard the other week. Been a while since I had one but I changed ends and walked past their cab. Said good evening and barely got a grunt back. I would still act 100% professional at all times.
     
  9. LowLevel

    LowLevel Established Member

    Messages:
    3,831
    Joined:
    26 Oct 2013
    As a guard I wouldn't stick the brake in for a fail to call. For one I don't know where sticking that in will bring the train up in a heap and if I've noticed we are going too fast to stop it's probably too late for me intervene anyway. It's always been said at our TOC that driving through a station having forgotten/misread one's docket is treated less seriously than attempting the call and majorly cocking it up.

    I am quite comfortable with putting the brake in if I have to - I've done it for dispatch issues, a burst air bag (which incidentally was the most scary incident I've ever been involved in, having dealt with a lot of things being in a carriage at line speed that feels like it's in the process of derailing and seeing the bar coupler through the bottom of the corridor connection as it jumps around was pretty awful), a large lump of something falling off the train following a tree collision etc but experience tells me with a failure to call it's usually best to contact the driver and ensure the train will be brought to a stand safely at the next stop/signal as appropriate for them to deal with it. If you don't stop and can't contact the driver that would be the point I would put the brake in and stop the train because clearly something isn't right (We operate class 156s which in 2018 have never been fitted with the vigilance system BR promised was imminent 30 years ago). If I put the brake in during leaf fall or similar I also risk causing damage to the train and causing further issues as I remove the driver's ability to control the brake application - it's just all the way in and some of our units still don't have WSP.

    We assist by reminding the driver when we see them, making louder early announcements for unusual stops (if you choose to block them out it's up to you) and if requested (some do) ringing up as a reminder on an amended diagram.

    I'm not in the habit of contacting the driver more than I absolutely have to, some are fine with it and some resent the distraction.
     
  10. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

    Messages:
    46,973
    Joined:
    20 Oct 2014
    Location:
    Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
    The "passive aggressive" PA in my observation sometimes works for these kinds of people, i.e. "Will passengers please be reminded that smoking is not permitted on this train, and that CCTV footage of anyone smoking, particularly illegal substances, will be provided to the Police for the purposes of law enforcement. Thank you".

    But really a lone guard won't be able to do much about it either. The Merseyrail enforcement officer (security guard) model is probably needed to rein this in, and has met with quite some success on Merseyside, where poor behaviour on trains had been endemic for years.
     
  11. Mag_seven

    Mag_seven Established Member

    Messages:
    5,707
    Joined:
    1 Sep 2014
    Location:
    here to eternity
    I'm struggling to see what smoking on trains has got to do with a fail to stop at Pilning!
     
  12. ComUtoR

    ComUtoR Established Member

    Messages:
    6,336
    Joined:
    13 Dec 2013
    Location:
    UK
    You made good points. I am concened that we are lead to believe the value of the Guard in these situations. Where they feel they need to intervene or not etc. Personally I would support any Guard who intervened because they thought I was making a mistake or they saw something I didn't.

    With the PA use etc. its both sides using an unintended part of the system to help. I have often said that we have such high NTS that we tend to use loopholes and idiosyncrasies to our advantage.

    Driving along and a voice from nowhere echos out round the cab is a big distraction. But the cab to cab indication (whatever the stock) is part and parcel so its unexpected but allowed for. Again, I would support any Guard who thought they needed to bell me up for any reason.

    When I drove with a Guard on a regular basis I always worked with the ethos that we worked as a team supporting each other and I continue to do so. You are very much right in that the good use of experience in what to do in what situation is the most important and where Guards are worth every penny.
     
  13. LowLevel

    LowLevel Established Member

    Messages:
    3,831
    Joined:
    26 Oct 2013
    I suspect the advantage we have over your current situation is we work together all the time and the drivers and guards know each other well (personally as well as professionally, our depot has a big social scene).

    I know the folk who will appreciate me going out of my way to reinforce stopping patterns and the ones who will think I'm nannying them (against what many would assume it's often the old hands who appreciate being prodded the most, a few too many new drivers think they're invincible - I never say it to them but I babysit the newbies the most even if they don't realise it - if the emergency brake goes in for any reason I'll be in the front cab within seconds of stopping regardless of where I am on the train to check they're OK. With an old hand I'll try ringing first and if we set off again immediately I won't at all unless they call me).

    We all look after one another - it's just that sometimes the obvious move to the guard isn't the obvious one to the driver and vice versa and given I can't see out of the front of the train I only directly interfere in how it's being driven if I think something is about to happen which will lead to us being in an unsafe position. Helping make the aftermath as painless as possible is sometimes better than inadvertently making the problem worse with premature direct action.
     
  14. ComUtoR

    ComUtoR Established Member

    Messages:
    6,336
    Joined:
    13 Dec 2013
    Location:
    UK
    It's a fine line to balance. I miss working with a Guard. My career started with Guards and slowly and irreparably, my career is now almost 100% DOO. I am certainly now an 'old hand'

    Working as a team almost seems frowned upon at my TOC. I agree with new Drivers too. It's a very different era for all of us.
     
  15. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

    Messages:
    10,896
    Joined:
    18 Dec 2012
    Location:
    Another planet...
    Smoking weed is practically compulsory in North Bristol I believe... ;)
     
  16. Tomnick

    Tomnick Established Member

    Messages:
    5,237
    Joined:
    10 Jun 2005
    To largely echo previous comments, albeit definitely not as an "old hand" in this context...

    I don't particularly see any benefit in the guard putting the brake in himself for, or to avoid, a 'fail to call'. Guards' route knowledge and appreciation of the train's braking characteristics is probably not going to be enough to intervene with confidence until it's far too late to stop even close enough to be to be able to set back. There's often not a lot of distance between an adventurous driver's optimistic braking point and the point at which it becomes too late to stop in time, and I certainly wouldn't expect most guards to be able to accurately identify either given the variety of driving styles and braking curves that they're subjected to!

    I do very much appreciate the teamwork though, and I'll never complain about a gentle prod whether it's necessary or not. Thankfully it's not been necessary thus far, but it's early days. Anyone who thinks it'll never be necessary is just setting themselves up for a big downcoming. I find it helpful to confirm stops before we set off, or soon afterwards, and all the other things that I can do to remind myself. Just the PA light coming on* is a tremendous cue even if you can't hear the subsequent announcement. I don't know why anyone would go out of their way to ignore the guard's attempts at checking and reminding (let alone just being sociable) and ignore all those subsequent little hints. The job's so much easier if you look after each other.

    * - or the tremendous glow associated with the screen on those horrendous TrainFX units - a helpful reminder not to miss the station that you can no longer see because your night vision's gone...
     
  17. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

    Messages:
    4,985
    Joined:
    12 Oct 2009
    Pilning is in South Gloucestershire.
     
  18. HowardGWR

    HowardGWR Established Member

    Messages:
    4,806
    Joined:
    30 Jan 2013
    Indeed, unlike some bordering parts of SGC, it is definitely 'over the hill and far away' (see Patchway Tunnels). In contrast, anyone who says that Filton, Kingswood and Hanham are not in Bristol are being correct but unreal. I suspect this had a lot to do with the missed Pilning stop, apart from its rarity in the timetable.
     
  19. Starmill

    Starmill Events Co-ordinator

    Messages:
    14,017
    Joined:
    18 May 2012
    Location:
    Manchester
    This sounds like a good response. This happens with station stops that are very rare from time to time. I was once waiting at Manea for a CrossCountry train towards Birmingham, of which there are just two a day. The train didn't stop, and the help point was quite difficult to work with on the basis that the staff in a call centre who answered it simply kept telling me that the Birmingham train in question was on time. When I explained that I knew it was on time and that the problem was that it hadn't stopped, they kept saying that the train had already departed. It was quite frustrating. The signaller was more help, who shouted over to me about how he didn't really know what had happened, but that there was an EMT service coming that 'might stop' (it didn't) and that there was another train just to Peterborough that would be coming along in an hour. There was nothing to do but wait for the next Greater Anglia train an hour later. My actual destination was Nottingham too, so I arrived more than two hours late through poor connections onwards from Peterborough.

    Thank goodness I had booked a ticket in advance and was able to claim it all back in Delay Repay!
     
  20. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

    Messages:
    4,611
    Joined:
    18 Jun 2015
    Hmm. To a point. One of the joys of working on the railway is the lack of brown nosing and sucking up, isn’t that right Com?!

    That’s something I revel in, as I believe you’ve noticed: asking me if I was “causing trouble again?”. Tisk tisk. As if I would. ;)

    Absolutely right.

    As a driver if I was passing in a back cab I wouldn’t dump the brake in those circumstances either as it would open a huge can of worms if I got it wrong (admittedly not quite the same situation as I wouldn’t necessarily know the calling pattern, but I agree, it’s impossible to judge braking distance accurately from the back cab).
     
    Last edited: 1 Oct 2018
  21. HLE

    HLE Established Member

    Messages:
    1,258
    Joined:
    27 Dec 2013
    Totally agree.
     
  22. Dhassell

    Dhassell Member

    Messages:
    993
    Joined:
    22 Mar 2015
    This is exactly what happened for the passengers who were waiting at Pilning! The help point people claimed the train had left on-time and had stopped!
     
  23. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

    Messages:
    4,985
    Joined:
    12 Oct 2009
    Therein lies the problem for Help Point staff. All they have to go by is the industry equivalent of RealTime Trains. From that they see that the train has hit its timing points. No way for them to know it hasn't stopped.

    Only when information reaches the TOC control or signaller will it be confirmed to customer service staff. That could be when the crew realise and call it in. Or when the stranded passengers finally get the Help Point or social media staff to refer up the chain and said staff get confirmation back.

    No great shakes, other than a Delay Repay claim, if there's another train along in half an hour. However, fail to calls often happen at stations with a sparse service. A better system, even as simple as immediately believing the passenger, should be in place to quickly resolve the matter and get folk moving.

    In this case I'm led to believe that a taxi was sourced within the hour, which is pretty good. Helped by one of the stranded folk being a rail enthusiast. Had that person not been there, and this was just 'normals' trying to get Help Point staff to beleive them, then I suspect the response time may have been much worse.
     
  24. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

    Messages:
    4,611
    Joined:
    18 Jun 2015
    They don’t happen *often* at any location.
     
  25. krus_aragon

    krus_aragon Established Member

    Messages:
    5,299
    Joined:
    10 Jun 2009
    Location:
    North Wales
    Maybe this would be more accurate: "fail to calls at stations with a sparse service typically receive more media attention" (where I include this forum in the category "media").
     
  26. t0ffeeman

    t0ffeeman Member

    Messages:
    271
    Joined:
    11 Jul 2008
    Yes I've seen this deteriorate over the years. Drivers and guards used to know each others names, helped out in pan or coupling, pass com problems. Latterly our guards just became pis systems, and just closing doors.
    All new recruits would go "why would I do that?"
    Strangely, they were got rid off.
     
  27. Dhassell

    Dhassell Member

    Messages:
    993
    Joined:
    22 Mar 2015
    I was the one who arranged the taxi with the staff at Patchway, The people waiting at Pilning had no other way to contact anyone other than the help point. Luckily I was in communication through other means with those at Pilning, and was going to meet them onboard the train, so was able to speak to Patchway staff, who phoned somewhere and the taxi was arranged within 5 minutes of me pointing out the fail to stop. The two enthusiasts waiting where happy to find another means of getting to Patchway, but they decided to ask me get the taxi arranged, as there was one rather distraught standard passenger (non-enthusiast) waiting to catch the train and had onward connections. Patchway staff where very good at arranging the taxi quickly, can't blame GWR for the taxi taking about 40 minutes to get there.
     
  28. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

    Messages:
    4,985
    Joined:
    12 Oct 2009
    Yes. A good job you were on the train and able to liaise with fellow enthusiasts stuck at Pilning. Well done on the proactivity. Top marks.

    Lucky for the stranded passenger you and friends were there. Had you not been then the alternative transport arrangements for that passenger may well have been very protracted. Dealing with help point staff is not easy even when you do know a thing or two about railway operations.
     
  29. bramling

    bramling Established Member

    Messages:
    7,279
    Joined:
    5 Mar 2012
    Location:
    Hertfordshire / Teesdale
    Wry smile at this!

    To be fair, I can't fully work out if you're being ironic or not, however certainly where I am there's very much more than a small dose of brown nosing and sucking up.

    We had the person who took a load of company-branded cups from the depot and gifted them to the BTP, it being no coincidence that the gentleman concerned was going for promotion at the time, and gently suggesting that the BTP "put a word in" to management. This little stunt went spectacularly wrong when a senior manager coincidentally visited the depot and went to make a cup of tea, and wanted to know where all the branded cups had gone, and was on the verge of calling the BTP to investigate! That would certainly have been an interesting one.

    Then we had the brand newby driver who was known for taking every opportunity to get face in company magazine. She managed to wangle assisting with the movement of a defective train, which was sufficiently defective that the move had to be partially unbraked and had not one but three separate defects meaning this was way beyond what is covered in training. Suffice to say she *didn't* end up in the magazine, after having to be prevented from making a few rather major errors along the way.

    On the subject of guards intervening, I tend to agree that in practice it's probably not the best thing to do. However, never forget the 1975 Moorgate collision where had the guard been on top of his game there was an opportunity to foresee what was going to happen and take preventative action. I'm sure I remember there's been one or two mishaps on the mainline over the years, the Eltham Well Hall derailment spring to mind where I think in that instance the guard did attempt to attract the driver's attention but it was too little too late.
     
    Last edited: 2 Oct 2018
  30. Bromley boy

    Bromley boy Established Member

    Messages:
    4,611
    Joined:
    18 Jun 2015
    I get the sentiment.

    But the reality is that the BTP won’t be interested (and they’re spread ridiculously thin), so that announcement would be toothless.

    The kind of person who openly smokes weed on a train is the kind of person who has nothing to lose, and wouldn’t be remotely phased by an announcement like that.
     

Share This Page