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Discussion in 'Disputes & Prosecutions' started by jeremyjh, 12 May 2019.
Here is an AGA view:
There's a difference between a malicious act and someone acting in good faith
To go off on a slight tangent, is the alarm really still needed (in its current form) today? In Ye Olde Days with no through corridors an alarm was the only way for passengers to communicate anything (wasn't it called a communication cord?) Fast forward to the 21st Century, and there are no end of ways to communicate (dare I say too many!) Whilst many passcomms are now not so much brakes as intercoms, is that not the way to go? A safety critical member of staff has an intercom to answer and asses the situation and the best response from there. The main issue would be DOO trains of course. But, is the Alarm an out of date thing?
Anyone needs to be able to stop the train immediately if it starts with someone trapped in the doors / leaning against the side / etc
We now have a 'call for aid' this is more of an intercom and does not put the brakes on. I think that's a better system but I'm not sure if the complete removal is the way forward.
Personally, I think we should be working towards prevention more than anything else. My modern traction has a smoke detector and will go off potentially before a passenger even notices, its got fire suppression and heat detection. It's built to a higher standard so there is less chance for internal cupboards opening, bits falling off, people hanging out windows etc etc.
Interlock for doors should always be improved so that you can't trap people in doors, onboard cameras help reduce dispatch irregularities and and various gubbins under the bonnet can prevent various incidents, including and not limited to CSDE/SDO (correct side door enable/Selective door operation) Trains are getting safer and safer. Potentially there will be a point where the passcom isn't required because there are other systems in place. The runaway train scenario is mitigated by the DSD and DVD (Deadmans handle)
The passcom doesn't do very well as a 'safety device' On the stock I drive; I will make an attempt to override the brake anyway.
Germany has long had two separate ones - the "Notbremse" (emergency brake) in red to stop the train immediately, and the "Notruf" (emergency call) in green for things that are emergencies but don't require the train to stop, e.g. an assault or medical emergency. I always thought this a very good idea.
Indeed. UK trains use green for the emergency door release which just seems like an invitation and is more prominent than the door release buttons on some units, with predictable results if the cover ever gets knocked off!
And if a bus driver fails to stop at a scheduled stop what do you do?
Ring the passcomm repeatedly (and start swearing)
You are a passenger, not a backseat driver. The passcomm being pulled by a well-intentioned passenger in a non-emergency situation is one thing, but someone who has been told by numerous people in the industry that a fail to call is not an emergency but decides they know better is quite another.
If there's multiple fails to call with no information given then that's potentially a different matter. Or if you genuinely have reason to believe that something is seriously amiss and could cause harm to someone.
A door being open is quite obviously an immediate danger to someone, as is a wheel coming through the floor.
Of there is another thing with stopping the train 'by force' after failing to stop, it will only cause further delay overall, if it has passed the stop by more than 400yds, or gone over a crossing, then it will not set back, I will go forward to the next station, so stopping it, will / could add 15 to 20 mins to that journey, or when it gets to the next station on time /early !, then tell the staff it missed station X, although by then they will be fully aware !
And some people should reacquaint themselves with the 1988 Gare de Lyon disaster and how that might have been avoided if a passenger had not pulled the emergency alarm.
To be fair, pulling the alarm was a causal factor, but the direct cause of the accident was the driver not following correct procedure when resetting the brake system.
The design of the signalling and radio systems also played a big part since, if memory serves me right, all the fatalities were in the train stopped on platform. Had the runaway been routed into its assigned platform, or had the stopped train been evacuated, the death toll would have been much lower.
Indeed. But one should never eliminate any causes. The person that pulled the alarm was prosecuted.
Charges were brought, but subsequently dismissed, iirc.
According to Wikipedia, fined 1000 Francs. By that account, the accident would not have happened if she hadn’t pulled the cord, which she did because she didn’t know that the new timetable had removed the stop from that service.
However, the disaster was then caused by what followed, an unholy combination of the driver’s failings when resetting the brake and system following his emergency alert.
Wasn't that just the maximum fine for pulling the chord though? My understanding was they initially considered charges that assigned her some portion of blame for the accident but they later withdrew them/were dismissed.
And on the new class 700 trains, as you have to break the glass to press the button to speak to the only member of staff on the train, it is easier to pull the emergency handle for the doors.
I would count that as misuse and potentially make any situation worse. This is very bad advice to give out.
On a 700 the glass for the passcom doesn't 'break' and is designed to snap inwards as it has been etched and pre broken. The 'Glass' on the egress cover will break all over the floor and doesn't give immediate access to the egress handle. I would strongly suggest that anyone attempting to break the glass to use an object, rather than their hand.
I’m surprised no-one has the imagination to see a situation where not activating the passcomm could result in fatalities.
Trains have been bombed by terrorists. Planes have been flown into buildings by terrorists, ones who took flying lessons solely to be in a position - quite literally - to carry out their evil intent. .
A train fails to make a booked call at the last station before a large city-centre terminus. It not only fails to call but begins to pick up speed.... yet everyone on board thinks ‘this is clearly a simple driver error, no need to use the passcomm’.
It’s not for passengers to guess whether it’s an emergency or not. I’d activate the passcomm. I’m not complacent about a previously-unused method of delivering mass casualties
On most newer stock, pulling the passcom would have no effect since ti simply sets off an alarm in the cab.
And then kicks the brakes in unless the driver overrides it, no?
Which any half-competent terrorist would easily do.
someone on here said the over-riding of the brakes cannot be done for an indefinite time?
Depends on the stock in question.
Or if it's been isolated.
I don't know how widespread this is, but TPWS magnets approaching terminus bufferstops will activate the brake if the train is going over 5mph. Might not completely stop if going very fast, but will surely mitigate the effects.
There will likely be TPWS sensors (edited: not magnets) at earlier signals as well.
Loops/grids, rather than magnets! Unless the TPWS has been isolated, of course...
But yes. Someone would have to deliberately isolate a whole load of safety equipment.
Like that film where they tried to crash a train into the buffers at Hastings station.