Author Topic: Level Crossings  (Read 2266 times)

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2020, 12:16:20 am »
Getting rid of level crossings is a nightmare for those who can't do stairs.

Stairs are probably the biggest cause of injury on the railways after level crossings...
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #26 on: February 07, 2020, 06:06:11 am »
I can only remember ever hearing of one accident on one of those. Perhaps people are just more careful if they are needing g to take the decision on their risk themselves.  We have so many round here and its so flat that I instinctively look both ways as I cross, just in case

No, the users get sloppier over time. Keeps the RAIB busy:

https://www.gov.uk/search/all?keywords=user+worked&organisations%5B%5D=rail-accident-investigation-branch&order=relevance

https://www.google.com/search?safe=off&tbm=isch&sxsrf=&ei=&q=uk+tractor+train+crash

The Roudham one is the one I remember as it is local. That's the level of interest they get, local rather than national, but given the number around here if they were that bad I'm sure wed hear more about them. My limited work for railtrack did not bring this kind of thing up. They were more voluble about cows on the line, describing it as needing a mop and bucket.
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Cudzoziemiec

  • Waking up now, put the kettle on!
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2020, 08:10:07 am »
They don't get national interest but that doesn't make the consequences any less for users, their families and friends, train drivers, passengers and the railways generally.

Some of those user-worked level crossings are bad designs though. I read of one where red and green lights were used not to say you could or could not cross but that the barrier had been unlocked (and could then be raised by the user). Unfortunately, unlocking had nothing to do with approaching trains.
I do not ride a great big Mercian, gangster tanwalls, fixed cog in the back.

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #28 on: February 07, 2020, 11:09:02 am »
agree entirely, which is why I look both ways at the half-barriered LCs around here where I have visibility to do so.  On the self-operated ones I take a stop-look-listen approach. I am under no illusion of the impact of several hundreds of tonnes of train vs 70-100kg of runner/cyclist.
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #29 on: February 07, 2020, 11:18:42 am »
Footpath crossings are included in level crossings. Network Rail have a classification of umpty types according to what traffic crosses them, who owns it (some are privately owned, they're not all rights of way) and how it's operated (which includes "user operated").

On a walk just last year, I was shocked to come across a footpath crossing over the same line I was refering too in the OP. (GWR - Bristol to London) Shocked, in a good way. Just a kissing gate with some very clear signage saying you cross at your own risk, you stop/look/listen as trains are travelling heckin fast here. It felt nice not to be treated like a lobotomy outpatient for once.

We are making a New World (Paul Nash, 1918)

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #31 on: February 07, 2020, 12:17:08 pm »
I'll admit that I'm sure there are badly designed and sited crossings, these seem to have clear sightlines for oncoming trains. Even if you aren't looking, the track thrums when they're a significant distance away.

The problem with closing them is that detours are typically 10-15 minutes, which isn't going to happen for people who have any alternative.
!nataS pihsroW

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #32 on: February 07, 2020, 01:13:32 pm »
Forgot to quote NR.

Quote
The surest way to reduce risk at a level crossing is to close it and under our current safety programme we have successfully closed more than 700 in the last three years.

That's the same kind of logic as celebrating a reduction in cycling casualties on the road by making sure fewer people cycle.
!nataS pihsroW

nicknack

  • Hornblower
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #33 on: February 07, 2020, 01:19:00 pm »
Footpath crossings are included in level crossings. Network Rail have a classification of umpty types according to what traffic crosses them, who owns it (some are privately owned, they're not all rights of way) and how it's operated (which includes "user operated").

On a walk just last year, I was shocked to come across a footpath crossing over the same line I was refering too in the OP. (GWR - Bristol to London) Shocked, in a good way. Just a kissing gate with some very clear signage saying you cross at your own risk, you stop/look/listen as trains are travelling heckin fast here. It felt nice not to be treated like a lobotomy outpatient for once.
There's quite a few of those around here (N. Kent).
There's no vibrations, but wait.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #34 on: February 07, 2020, 01:58:28 pm »
As a regular walker in Kent and the Sussexes, I can verify there are loads and loads of footpath crossings that simply state STOP, LOOK, LISTEN. They mostly have a stile to clamber over, I suppose.

I can't think of any that are particularly dangerous, they're mostly fairly open sections of track, and given by the number of other walkers we meet, probably don't see massive use and mostly by savvy people familiar with crossing the lines. There's a couple on the Uckfield line that don't have such great sightlines, but the diesel trains are loud and they don't move that quick.
!nataS pihsroW

Cudzoziemiec

  • Waking up now, put the kettle on!
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #35 on: February 07, 2020, 02:14:42 pm »
Stop, Look, Listen, Beware of trains, is the "conventional" signage on foot crossings, visible in rafletcher's Thame Today link. Sometimes red and green lights and/or a siren are added to deal with higher speeds or poor sight lines. The bad design comes when red and green lights are used for meanings other than go and stop.
I do not ride a great big Mercian, gangster tanwalls, fixed cog in the back.

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #36 on: February 07, 2020, 02:26:26 pm »
As a regular user of the London to Whitstable line I have come to notice that, as one increases ones distance from The Great Wen, so increases the number of footpaths crossing the line using wholly uncontrolled crossings.

What I have also noticed by the trackside is a 'W' sign / instruction for the train driver to deploy The Whistle (which in itself is an indicator of the glacial speed at which railway signage has been dragged into The Modern World™) thereby giving anyone on or about to use the crossing, approximately 14 or 15 seconds notice of the train's imminent arrival at said crossing.
This assumes, of course, that the driver is looking for and spots the 'W' sign in the first place.

My friends in Whitstable advise me that the line is frequently closed, due to a 'person on the tracks'.
Sadly, more often than not, the person is there due to tragic, self-inflicted circumstances, rather than carelessness on the crossing.

Cudzoziemiec

  • Waking up now, put the kettle on!
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #37 on: February 07, 2020, 02:41:08 pm »
Some also have a black cross on a white background, probably only lines with a very low speed limit.
I do not ride a great big Mercian, gangster tanwalls, fixed cog in the back.

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #38 on: February 07, 2020, 06:51:04 pm »
Forgot to quote NR.

Quote
The surest way to reduce risk at a level crossing is to close it and under our current safety programme we have successfully closed more than 700 in the last three years.

That's the same kind of logic as celebrating a reduction in cycling casualties on the road by making sure fewer people cycle.
“Closed” includes “closed and replaced by a bridge”


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

yorkie

  • On top of the Galibier
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #39 on: February 07, 2020, 08:30:49 pm »
Some also have a black cross on a white background, probably only lines with a very low speed limit.


Those are generally AOCL - Automatic Open Crossing Locally monitored


This type of crossing doesn't have barriers or gates, is triggered automatically by treadles on the approach of a train and the driver is able to monitor the safe operation of wigwags and sirens locally from the train (as opposed to remote monitoring from a signalling centre by CCTV), as a white light pointing along the track will only flash when the wigwags and sirens are operating correctly.


These crossings are no longer being installed and the existing ones are starting to have an obstacle detection system fitted to supplement the driver's Mk1 eyeball, where traffic doesn't make it more cost effective to install a barrier crossing instead.
Born to ride my bike, forced to work! ;)

British Cycling Regional Track Commissaire
British Cycling Regional Circuit Commissaire

Cudzoziemiec

  • Waking up now, put the kettle on!
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #40 on: February 07, 2020, 09:04:07 pm »
Okay, the place I'm thinking of there are several farm crossings near each other (just gates with the "Stop Look Listen" sign) then a B road which has barriers and lights now but I think might have been open till a couple of years ago. It's a quarry line that only has about one train a day.
I do not ride a great big Mercian, gangster tanwalls, fixed cog in the back.

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #41 on: February 08, 2020, 01:06:27 am »
Keeping track of trains up to a failsafe, safety critical standard *is* apparently rocket surgery.
Rocket 'surgery'?

'Rocket engineering', surely.
Rust never sleeps

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #42 on: February 08, 2020, 01:08:33 am »
A surprisingly large number of trains still run on “somewhere between signal box A and signal box B” principles. Only one line in the UK has “smart” signalling, which was converted as a test a decade ago. No more have been done since.
Moving block I presume. Where's that ?
And no more have been done doubtless because of signalling engineers being notoriously conservative and the cost.
Rust never sleeps

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #43 on: February 08, 2020, 01:53:41 am »
Keeping track of trains up to a failsafe, safety critical standard *is* apparently rocket surgery.
Rocket 'surgery'?

'Rocket engineering', surely.

This joke is now in orbit.
!nataS pihsroW

MikeFromLFE

  • Previously known as Millimole
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #44 on: February 08, 2020, 09:23:21 am »
A surprisingly large number of trains still run on “somewhere between signal box A and signal box B” principles. Only one line in the UK has “smart” signalling, which was converted as a test a decade ago. No more have been done since.
Moving block I presume. Where's that ?
And no more have been done doubtless because of signalling engineers being notoriously conservative and the cost.
I think that the line to Aberystwyth was converted to the European signaling standard (? ERTS?) and of course there's HS1
Too many angry people - breathe & relax.

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #45 on: February 08, 2020, 09:32:49 am »
You shouldn't stop on a level crossing but, if you do and your car stalls, the DSA advice used to be to put the car into first gear and crank the starter.  The starter motor is quite capable of moving the car.  Sadly, most modern cars won't operate the starter unless your foot is on the clutch or the brake (it varies).
Never tell me the odds.

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #46 on: February 08, 2020, 09:39:49 am »
You shouldn't stop on a level crossing but, if you do and your car stalls, the DSA advice used to be to put the car into first gear and crank the starter.  The starter motor is quite capable of moving the car.  Sadly, most modern cars won't operate the starter unless your foot is on the clutch or the brake (it varies).

Doesn't work for automatic transmissions

Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #47 on: February 08, 2020, 09:44:17 am »
You shouldn't stop on a level crossing but, if you do and your car stalls, the DSA advice used to be to put the car into first gear and crank the starter.  The starter motor is quite capable of moving the car.  Sadly, most modern cars won't operate the starter unless your foot is on the clutch or the brake (it varies).

Doesn't work for automatic transmissions
Also, second gear is likely to move you further, sooner.

yorkie

  • On top of the Galibier
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #48 on: February 08, 2020, 03:45:27 pm »
A surprisingly large number of trains still run on “somewhere between signal box A and signal box B” principles. Only one line in the UK has “smart” signalling, which was converted as a test a decade ago. No more have been done since.
Moving block I presume. Where's that ?
And no more have been done doubtless because of signalling engineers being notoriously conservative and the cost.
I think that the line to Aberystwyth was converted to the European signaling standard (? ERTS?) and of course there's HS1


ERTMS - European Rail Traffic Management System, a system of standards for the management and interoperation of railway signalling in Europe. This incorporates GSM-R communications and ETCS (European Train Control System (Signalling)) among other things. The Cambrian line version is effectively the UK test bed for ERTMS, before it is rolled out nationally.


HS1 is currently signalled with TVM430 (Transmission Voie-Machine 430km/h) which is the system used on all French High Speed Lines, as well as the Channel Tunnel, although there are plans to upgrade this to ERTMS in the future.


Both of these systems are cab signalling systems, where the train has a display in the cab authorising the driver to travel at a given maximum speed over the next section of track, as well as the maximum authorised speed for the section after. The sections are denoted by reflective lineside signs,rather than fixed signals,as fixed signals are difficult to read above 250km/h.
Born to ride my bike, forced to work! ;)

British Cycling Regional Track Commissaire
British Cycling Regional Circuit Commissaire

MikeFromLFE

  • Previously known as Millimole
Re: Level Crossings
« Reply #49 on: February 08, 2020, 04:22:35 pm »
Thank you Yorkie
This is what's great about YACF someone, somewhere knows stuff!
Too many angry people - breathe & relax.