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The former Ocean Terminal buildings and the warehouses are totally eradicated along with any buildings that stood on Millbay Pier with some new housing alongside. The whole topography of the site has completely changed and little visual remains of the terminal station or the viaduct and bridge towards North Road. The triangular junction immediately west of North Road gave access to the west over the separate Stonehouse Pool Viaduct.

At North Road, the triangular connection is evident and the initial course of the Millbay line could be walked as a green space a few years ago. There is just one automated half barrier level crossing which is at Greenland Mill, east of Bradford on Avon. In theory it is automatic, but the signaller has to control the strike time depending on whether the train is stopping at Bradford on Avon or not.

There are also several farm crossings in the Bradford on Avon area. Ten grade six signallers work shifts Interestingly HSTs terminating or calling at Frome have a distinctive 1Jxx headcode to remind the signallers to turn them off the main line! He explained the proposal on land close to the A36 Park and Ride facility alongside the existing railway between Salisbury and Tisbury, already described as 'ideal' for a low cost platform solution.

Further stages include securing the funding through to building the railway platform. Wilton Estate has joined Wilton Town Council in financing the latest work, including drawing- up the necessary documents for Stage 2. Similar schemes being worked on for Royal Wootton-Bassett and Corsham are much further behind in their planning stages, but hint at possible opening by Increasing passenger numbers at the Airport are putting great pressure on local roads and official airport car parks, with local landowners offering their sites as car parks. The airport, formerly Lulsgate, suffers from poor public transport, with buses from Temple Meads serving the streets of Bedminster en route.

FL's proposal is for the Airport to be served by a loop, rather than a direct link from Long Ashton, to increase access opportunities and revenue. There would be clockwise and anti-clockwise services to promote non-Airport traffic as a significant income stream. It can be viewed from the Strawberry Line Trail, based on the Yatton to Cheddar trackbed, which is adjacent to the site. St Monica Trust has fully renovated the building and platform area to a high standard, conserving original features and replicating others, developed as part of the home Sandford Station retirement village get your name down quickly , Under a Section Planning Agreement with North Somerset Council, the main station building with ticket office and waiting rooms is designated for community use.

Sadly the loco is only externally restored so no rides! Admission is free but donations are welcome. Anyone needing the present loop here is advised that it is being extended for the station reopening. The hourly LM daytime services from Crewe to Euston are the 'poor relations' when allocating paths; there are pathing issues around Virgin and Cross Country trains at Stoke-on-Trent and Stafford. Therefore LM services are timetabled for five minutes pathing time at both those stations with quite slack timing in between as well. Indeed, if the service is not held at Norton Bridge signal, arrival at Stafford is usually four minutes early, with nine minutes wait.

Before the Norton Bridge remodelling the signal controlling access to the Up Fast towards Stafford was on the Stone line well before the junction, and not within passenger sight of Norton Bridge station. A wait of 3 to 4 minutes here was typical, and the guard often announces that this wait is timetabled, so would not cause late running. Since the remodelling, there is a much greater length of chord before the Up Fast is joined and the signal has been moved forward so that stationary trains do not block Yarnfield Jn and is now adjacent to the disused Norton Bridge station.

Even if a passenger did manage to alight there, they would be stranded. The footbridge has long gone and there is no escape! The Cotswold Line Promotion Group and the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group have joined forces to support the project and 5, new homes are due to be built in the area by Recent house building has helped drive a well above national average passenger growth on the North Cotswold Line and some station car parks are being further enlarged.

The Rail User Groups said that a 45 minute direct rail journey between a new Long Marston Parkway station and Birmingham might be possible and they would also lobby for the doubling of the remaining two single-line sections of the North Cotswold Line between Worcester and Oxford. The external cleanliness of GWR trains passing your Editor's house in recent months has been exemplary, including right through the difficult winter period Rob Pritchard 23 Feb.

The work is ready for detailed survey and design work on the proposed Midland Metro Brierley Hill extension. The line continues to Round Oak steel terminal and is then open to Stourbridge Jn. Its modest career to was in BLN From then on, archived files reveal continuing prevarication against replacing the existing south-east curve i.

The Cambrian doubtless saw the Railway Executive Committee's quest for train mileage reductions during World War 1 as an ideal opportunity to abandon an unprofitable service - it was withdrawn along with many others services elsewhere from 1 Jan Meanwhile, the Cambrian had taken the opportunity to overcome one of the strong objections of the Board of Trade's railway inspectorate under the Regulation of Railway Act - the original method of working Llanfyllin branch trains at Llanymynech involving the reversing siding BLN - by constructing a link between that branch and the Nantmawr line at Nantmawr Jn Llanfyllin Branch Jn from Freight traffic continued to use the Nantmawr branch until the Tanat River bridges were damaged by flooding on Fri 2 Jan , and through working stopped note that this change to Nantmawr traffic working via Llynclys was not formally recognised by timetable alteration until 13 Jul Various dubious dates have been bandied about regarding the abandonment of this section of the branch but the following is drawn from GWR engineering records.

The line was not regarded as permanently 'closed' or 'severed' reportedly used for wagon storage , despite the diversion of train service, until 15 Sep when Llanfyllin Branch Jn and a short section of track there were removed, as shown on the GWR plan BELOW from Kew Archives with thanks to Richard Maund. On the section thus abandoned, an interchange siding with the canal had existed at Wern SJ - shown on the OS plan but removed between the and editions.

First booked calls 'if required' were not until the Jul working timetable WTT ; it first appears in the Railway Clearing House's Hand-book of Stations edition, not having been included in any amendments issued since the previous edition. The last 'if required' calls were in the Oct WTT. Excluding inspection cars, Irish Rail passenger traffic grew 7. The busiest stations on the census day were all in Dublin: Connolly nearly 30, passengers , Pearse 27, , Heuston 19, and Tara Street 17, , which together handled one third of all traffic.

Least used station was Carrick-on-Suir 1 passenger documented on census day on the Limerick Junction to Waterford line which must be regarded as under threat of closure as is Limerick to Ballybrophy. Despite the poor use of this line, Underbridge near Carrick-on-Suir was recently renewed with work completed on 24 Feb.

Clive Kessell BSc CEng FIET FIRSE – Rail Engineer

However, it remains a staffed block post where the signalman can use a bicycle to transfer the single line token ; but trains can no longer cross there, perhaps now uniquely in the British Isles? All five stations between Ballybrophy and Limerick, all four stations between Limerick Junction and Waterford, and three stations between Ennis and Athenry were among the 15 least used on the network with less than 40 passengers. The Group is preparing a Summary Case for the Cross-Border Waverley route link including proposals, a summary of benefits, some case studies for example timber by rail and a list of priorities.

With the success of the Tweedbank line to date it is interesting to see the proposals for a through route to Carlisle and the business case being put together by the group to promote the reopening. Work begins this month, NR has already renewed the signalling and plans to raise line speeds over level crossings and improve earthworks and structures. Sadly passenger numbers have declined by 9.

This is attributed to long rail journey times and unreliability. Note the freight working left. There were two Society 'Bubble Car' railtours in Scotland in the late s. On 28 Aug the Fiddichburger [with extra relish and chips? It went from Aberdeen to Inverness one way visiting Dufftown, Burghead and Forres Goods the latter line is due to become part of the new passenger line here from 7 Oct , with a side trip to Longmorn Distillery which then had an isolated standard gauge internal line once connected to the former Elgin to Craigellachie line at Longmorn, the first station south of Elgin.

All Ian Mortimer. ABOVE: The former station platform at Dufftown then the terminus of a freight branch from Keith Jn to serve several local distilleries; the main traffic was incoming grain. Note the remains of the other platform on the left; there used to be a passing loop here. The loop was the run round for the grain trains usually Class 47 hauled which had an unloading facility behind the photographer. It was quite normal to safely walk on the track in those days during these stops!

Forres East Jn the Aberdeen end is to the left, with the main line behind the signal. Who would have thought then that nearly 49 years later this section would become the passenger line again? There is a very wide ranging questionnaire and you can really make a difference by filling it in and submitting your ideas. With regard to rail, this is largely just a pulling together of projects already widely trailered, such as electrification and resignalling of the North Wales main line, more redoubling between Wrexham and Chester, and redoubling of the Halton Curve.

There are new commitments to improve line speeds on the Wrexham to Bidston line, and to enhancing capacity at Chester, albeit without any specific detail. Also included is a commitment to 'work with partners to identify opportunities to develop rail freight facilities at Holyhead Port'. It opened as a 4ft 7in gauge horse-worked tramroad on 22 Apr The tramroad was converted to a railway in , with 'proper' passenger trains introduced from 1 Feb ; the only intermediate stations then were Kenfig Hill named Cefn until 1 Aug and Pyle. The GWR took over operations from 16 May , and a flat crossing with the South Wales main line was replaced by a bridge with the branch passing underneath it on 13 Nov , with new connections laid in at Pyle station.

There was a short-lived north-to-east connection between and and, much later in time, a west-to-south connection was opened on 7 Mar Following closure of the Inner Dock at Porthcawl, the passenger station was relocated 12ch further south on 6 Mar ; unusually, no turntable was provided, locos turning via a triangle of former docks lines. An intermediate private halt was in use between and , known as Porthcawl Golfers' Platform.

This name was given the 'elbow' and it reopened as a public halt, Nottage Halt, on 14 Jul , although passengers were never carried between Porthcawl and Nottage, Down trains being to 'set down on request to the Guard' and Up trains 'to pick up only'. It is not near the farm building described.

There is a wall over which the remains of the platform can be found. A picture can be taken of the platform from top of the wall. The map reference is SS Sadly this railway closes from 1 April after 'notice to quit' Stuart Hicks. The Railway is going to contact Swindon Borough Council's graffiti team for expert advice because of the risk of damaging delicate paintwork underneath.

This comes after the Railway was told the suspects arrested on suspicion of causing last May's fire, which destroyed a class DEMU trailer-car, would not be prosecuted. Suspects were arrested in the wake of the arson attack, but the Railway was told by the Crown Prosecution Service that the case had been dropped because there was no realistic chance of a conviction.

As well as the DEMU car, two wagons with rare electrical equipment collected to extend the signalling system were obliterated and the insurance company refused to pay out for. Trains ran on this line GWR King was hauled out of the workshop to the foot crossing, near the entrance, and back by to settle it on its springs before weighing. The Centre's web site records that 'Firefly' was completed in the year the Broad Gauge Line first carried passengers so it would have not run since at least assuming a year boiler certificate. The project would create new jobs and apprenticeships, working through Scotland's Modern Apprentice Scheme, as well as a programme for existing and new volunteers; it will become part of an improved visitor trail.

Decision on HLF funding is expected later this year. MR44 : Work is continuing on the Waterford Greenway cycle and walking route alongside the railway. It is expected to be completed and opened on Saturday 25 March - exactly 50 years since the passenger service ceased on the Waterford to Mallow line. The railway is planning to extend the coffee shop at Kilmeadan to cater for cyclists and walkers. They are fundraising to build a log cabin to house the coffee shop. The link has been used on occasions. The original intention had been that it should continue to Pont Croesor but this proved to be beyond its resources in the time available - which could be said to vindicate the FR's 'muscling in'.

Trains only ran to Traeth Mawr for the season; the last train was on 28 October and the loop was lifted the following week. After successful completion, 'Gelert' ran light to Beddgelert and back to take water; the locos then ran round the train at Hafod-y-Llyn. It crossed the Porthmadog to Caernarfon service train on which the correspondent was travelling with a Railway Ramblers group at Pont Croesor and had. The transfer took place via the Pen-y-Mount link with 'Blanche' on 27 April This had been declined.

It was thought that a dispute over land at Pen-y-Mount could have influenced this decision. After arrival of the final advertised passenger round trip back from Pen-y-Mount, the special proceeded to Pen-y-Mount where it traversed the link and continued to the head of steel near Portreuddyn, reversing there and returning to the WHHR terminus in Porthmadog. MR : The Tramway's season leaflet states: Please note from 1st October until Easter , our tram service will operate from and to our Riverside Depot, with the benefit of a behind the scenes tour included in your ticket price.

A vintage shuttle bus will run between the old Seaton terminus and Riverside Depot whilst construction of our new terminus takes place. Top left is Slaggyford - the 13 mile branch ran from Haltwhistle off top left and may do so again! MR29 : The Prince of Wales recently visited this Community Heritage Centre and met with volunteers and businesses that have helped to create the centre and restore the Mountsorrel Railway.


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Tarmac has also donated construction materials and provided professional advice during the project. A significant number of Tarmac employees have also volunteered on the project. The website states 'mid'. Train Describers are not provided on the sections worked by TCB; trains are described by single stroke bell. In all cases apart from Grangetown and Redcar which have buttons on the panels the bells for the TCB operated sections are the bottom sections of BR standard block instruments.

Absolute Block also applies between Redcar and Longbeck. Five block bells sit side by side to the left of the signaller's workstation - a full block instrument for the goods lines to Whitehouse and the bottom sections of block instruments for the four TCB operated sections. Each has a 'ring' hanging from the tapper, so that the signaller can actually see which ring has rung! Middlesbrough station has two platforms there are proposals for a third and a stabling siding at each end. There used to be a middle line, for stock stabling, and an east end Down platform 'Whitby' bay. We then continued east to Whitehouse, an NER type C1 box, extended in and subsequently refurbished.

The box controls a normally lightly used level crossing which comes alive on match days, as Middlesbrough FC's Riverside Stadium is close by. The Goods Lines end here. The diagram still shows the short Stockton Haulage branch, where the internal system was covered on our Cleveland Area Industrial railtours of May BLN last reported rail traffic in Jan This heavily rusted and distorted track is the former Down Goods line, left as a single track branch when the line to Grangetown South Bank Jn was reduced to double track from 5 Dec , for coal trains to serve South Bank coke ovens which closed 19 Sep Track which once diverged south west from the box and was still embedded in the road was the subject of some speculation amongst the participants.

Subsequent research, after the visits, showed that it formed a short branch from the former Cargo Fleet Sidings to the Redpath Dorman Long engineering works. John Cowburn. Tim wished to go to Grangetown box on the afternoon shift as he did not want to impose a group of visitors on the relatively new morning shift signaller, so we headed for Redcar, an LNER type 13 box dating from with an IFS panel installed in Feb It controls a busy level crossing and is very close to the road. Because of this there is an extension jutting out over the pavement with a glass panel in the floor for the signaller to see pedestrians directly beneath.

The crossing has prototype sliding gates, with pads to detect obstructions when closing, because there was insufficient room to install barrier equipment without demolishing the box. These replaced the old life- expired NE Region motorised boom gates.

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Four at a time just about fitted in. It survives to control a level crossing. It is made the more so not only by the complex interactions between economic, social and environmental effects, which are not yet understood and for which we have no effective means of decision-making, but also by the fact that the railway is a system within a wider set of complex systems - national and global economic systems, the global environmental system, natural resources such as fuel, competition for skilled resources within an ageing demography, other transport modes and European legislative frameworks.

As if that were not enough the extent to which we deliver a rail transport system with greater capacity is ultimately founded on some fairly fundamental principles and aspirations, such as the expectation that economic growth and increasing prosperity will continue year on year - recessions not withstanding - and that the world's resources coupled with human endeavour are capable of delivering this.

We need to understand what customers really want and critically examine the role of signals and telecommunications engineers in meeting these needs. When we design and build a system for instance, is the need for reliability and maintainability a key part of our considerations? Do we actively consider the trade-offs between safety and other performance factors, and are we prepared to accept something less than gold-plated safety for the sake of other benefits?

Railways in Great Britain are expensive. Cost comparisons are difficult but there is some evidence that railways in mainland Europe are less expensive overall to build and operate. This could in part be related to unit labour costs, but may well be more strongly linked to inefficiencies built into the way we work.

Network Rail in particular is charged with achieving more savings over the next five years. Government likes to think in terms of cost savings. For engineers it may be more compelling to think in terms of delivering more without spending more. So if we are going to make our contri-bution to achieving all this, what is it that we have to do differently?

What are the different things we have to do in future? What do we have to do less of - or even stop doing entirely? What new mindsets do we have to adopt to re-think the engineering approach that we have used for so many years? Thinking globally is well beyond the scope of this paper and our concerns are more immediate.

Specifically, for the majority of the readers of this paper the key question we have to ask and attempt to answer is what contribution the signal engineering profession and its members can make to the Four Cs.

It is about freight as well as passenger traffic. It is also about how quickly we can deliver greater capacity. ERTMS may be part of the solution, although its contribution to capacity improvement may be overstated, but it is not the only area we should be focusing on, and it is not a quick solution. The railway industry in Britain and many other European countries has seen much change over the last decade. This has been mostly structural and political change though and much of signal engineers' efforts have been focused on ensuring that engineering and safety processes survive reorganisation.

Perhaps the time has come to channel that considerable effort into making sure modern signalling systems support the challenges of the Four Cs. What can we do to improve the energy efficiency of the railway and reduce carbon emissions? Lowenergy, low-carbon signalling and communications systems are laudable and we should drive for them. But the problem is much bigger. To face up to the challenges set out above we must not only do things differently, but also do different things and set ourselves new, demanding goals.

We will consider these four areas at two levels, the setting of expectations and practical actions. With the benefit of hindsight we might reflect that in the s British Leyland had work study processes for improving the efficiency of their current processes that were second to none. But it was what they did not have that turned out to matter more - the vision and ability to set demanding goals that appealed to their customers and then deliver them in a way that British Leyland did not think possible.

They and others like them left it to the Japanese to excel - and this led ultimately to the destruction of the British car industry. When setting expectations and goals we need to be aware of both the potential and the pitfalls. The setting of goals that are well beyond current levels of achievement is an important means of driving real change, because it forces people to think and act radically rather than just try a little harder with existing processes and practices. In that sense goals are laudable.

However the setting of any goal can produce unexpected side effects and results. Over recent years we have been caught up in a quagmire of measurement and cost-benefit analysis with mantras such as, if you can not measure it you can not manage it. This has created a whole subindustry of activity which is labour-intensive and indeed can become an end in itself.

Moreover, in the single-minded pursuit of simplistic targets and goals we inadvertently - or sometimes consciously - skew our priorities, often to the detriment of the broader goals of the company or enterprise. The American management guru Dr Deming once famously said, If management sets targets and makes people's jobs dependent upon meeting them, people will do whatever is necessary to hit the targets, including destroying the company in the process. The problems associated with target-setting beset governments, organisations and companies. There is no simple solution, but real technical vision and leadership can help to provide a cohesive sense of direction and a sensible balance between competing objectives.

Returning to the rail industry let us consider the reliability of systems as technology has progressed. If we take signalling as our example, it is probably true that the reliability of the oldest technology in service is as good as modern signalling systems and equipment. It lasts longer too. Nor despite the use of modern technology such as software-based systems do we get much more functionality than the old systems offered. Contrast this with other examples both within and outside the rail industry such as rolling stock, telecommunication systems and cars.

There the application of technology has done a great deal to improve both reliability and functionality - and interestingly, in the case of rolling stock and cars, safety as well see Figure 1. It is instructive to examine another industry where we might be more objective in our views. The authors are old enough to remember the days when, on setting off in the car, there was a real risk of breakdown. The wellprepared would carry a comprehensive toolbox in the boot.

Perhaps the expectations were exemplified by the old British Leyland advertisements that reassuringly announced that they would fix the gremlins in the guarantee period - at no cost to you. We all expected problems, and put in place arrangements to live with them and manage them as best we could. But the Japanese took a different view, and they have taken reliability to levels that previously seemed impossible.


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A similar shift has taken place in the economy of cars. This is better than in recent years although, as some passengers have pointed out, if connections are taken into account the overall journey experience is worse. Unfortunately signalling is one of the constraints on improvement. One could take the view that it is low expectations of signalling systems in service that have led to the lack of innovation to achieve the sort of reliability improvements that have been witnessed in the aerospace and car industries.

The car and aerospace industries adopt a philosophy where reliability and safety are achieved through having layers of service and safety protection in which no single layer is critical. The oil and gas industries also adopt a philosophy of parallel control and protection which means that individual elements can be of a lower integrity. If a major problem does occur it is better to fail in a safe mode than a dangerous one, but that has to be a last resort and should be seen only rarely. We need to address the challenge by setting ourselves some top-level objectives for signalling systems.

We suggest some here that are illustrative. The IRSE might take the lead in working them through. Any in-service signalling delay that does occur should be treated as a significant operational incident and investigated accordingly. For example, a single track circuit failure should have little or no impact. Practical steps that the IRSE could take might be to establish a technical committee to establish stretching targets such as those above, together with the generic architectural philosophies and features that could deliver those targets, and also to lobby railway authorities and system suppliers to support the adoption of ultra-high reliability signalling on a scale that is commercially viable.

Other industries have accepted and delivered on such targets. We question whether there has really been an improvement in assurance commensurate with the effort devoted to it. There are many criticisms of the costs of producing and reviewing vast documents, and a whole safety case sub-industry has sprung up that sits alongside signalling projects. Behind this immediate cause lie questions about competence and industry organisation. Nowadays safety case work is often done by safety case specialists rather than being done by signal engineers as an integral part of the design, development and implementation processes.

In fairness it has to be acknowledged that suppliers have by and large incorporated ENx standards into their core processes for system development and the result, whilst still paper intensive, appears to be well integrated. In contrast, systems application projects that involve safety case work often appear to generate large volumes of paperwork which provide limited added assurance, and which err very much on the side of caution without sufficient regard to the cost and reliability implications.

The IRSE addresses this problem to some extent for younger engineers by incorporating modern safety competence in the IRSE examination syllabus, but we suggest that the Institution could do more. This is true, but we urgently need to take a hard look at what is being done, and the price that comes with it. If we are honest with ourselves, we do testing to compensate for deficiencies in specification, design and implementation.

If we had greater confidence in the outputs from earlier life-cycle stages, testing would be less important and take less time.

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Resignalling projects can generate hundreds of test logs during testing - yet we claim that the systems are designed to safety integrity level SIL 4. How can this be? Testing cannot build quality and safety into a project at the end, nor should it be presumed to do so. Quality and safety are built in through high standards of design and construction.

The on-track testing regime takes an unacceptable amount of time and constitutes an unacceptably high cost. Signal engineering work is one of the most high profile activities undertaken during such possessions, disrupting the railway at vast expense with scarce labour resources. It is quite simply an unsustainable way of carrying on. These are compelling reasons for re-thinking the testing of signalling systems. This is not the first time that testing has been the focus of attention, but useful outcomes always seem to have eluded us, and we are still testing systems in substantially the same way as we have done ever since the Clapham accident almost twenty years ago.

Here again the IRSE could take the initiative and set some top level targets. This change needs to avoid the trap of incorporating yet more layers of labour-intensive design checking. What this may mean in practice is a complete rethink of the process of designing signalling systems right through to commissioning.

It is certain that we have given virtually no attention at all to energy efficiency or to carbon emissions, at least in the era when power has been cheap and plentiful. Some signal engineers will still remember the days when power was not readily available at mechanical signal 33 boxes and all sorts of clever ideas were implemented to minimise power consumption. But then we destroyed our green credentials by throwing the expired batteries down the embankment for nature to contend with!

Now energy, carbon emissions and sustainability are all key considerations for almost any human enterprise, and signalling and telecommunications engineering is not excluded. It might of course be argued that, since railways are one of the more environmentally friendly forms of transport, they need not be a priority for us - and since signalling and telecommunications systems are not major users of energy, they are well down the list of priorities even within the rail industry.

But remember please the demise of the British car industry to which we referred earlier, and their view that unreliability was something that had to be lived with. The railway industry cannot afford to put its head in the sand, regarding itself as being the acceptably green form of transport for the foreseeable future.

Inside the Relay room

Every industry has to play its part in making improvements, and if we do not we will find that the car industry makes rapid strides and competes with us for green credentials while we stand still. Two main aspects of sustainability are relevant to signalling and telecommuni-cations systems. The first is the extent to which we can reduce the carbon footprint of the systems themselves, from system specification through to decommissioning.

The second, which probably offers greater potential, is the extent to which signalling systems - or more correctly, traffic management systems - can facilitate the energy-efficient running of trains. We have set out the expectations being placed upon the rail industry in Great Britain through the UK government's White Paper and Rail Technical Strategy of , and we have endeavoured to demonstrate how they are relevant to signalling and telecommunications engineers.

We recognise that, unless senior people in the profession set new and challenging priorities and targets, the railway will not change in the ways that are needed. We have raised a number of challenges which, whilst they need some refinement, will we hope stimulate the start of major changes in which the IRSE can and should play a leading role. Signal engineers have sought to protect safety throughout more than two decades of radical, structural change in the industry. Now that the industry structure is stabilised and with the imperatives of Capacity, Carbon, Customers and Cost placed upon us, we need to embrace the equally challenging task of realigning signalling and telecommunications engineering to meet the need for sustainable rail transport.

The topic of this paper is no different in this respect, and we had originally planned to provide a section on competence within the body of the paper. On reflection it did not fit neatly with the flow of the paper. Rather than omit it entirely though we offer it here as an annex in the hope that it may stimulate debate about whether the traditional range of competences of railway signalling and telecommunications engineering are appropriate for the changing world in which we work.

The role and influence of human resource and competence in delivering organisational and societal objectives is paramount. However competence has traditionally been viewed mechanistically, as the accumulation of training, educational credentials and project and practical experience, but overlooking a portfolio of qualities and capabilities that are beyond mere knowledge and experience and yet constitute true competence. We have developed a general framework for the understanding, assessment and management of competence as a universal systems approach which can be customised and applied in domains from engineering to service sectors.

The European Guide to Good Practice in Knowledge Management defines competence as an appropriate blend of knowledge, experience and motivational factors which enables a person to perform a task successfully. Competence may also be defined as the ability to perform a task correctly, efficiently and consistently to a high quality, under varying conditions, to the satisfaction of the end customer.

These definitions constitute a much more demanding portfolio of talents and capabilities than mere successful application of knowledge. So a competent person is, or should be, much more than a knowledgeable worker. Competence may also be attributed to a group or a team. Such collective competence, including the ability of the individuals to work together successfully as a group, is a factor that is often overlooked in organisational design.

The appropriate blend of these abilities renders a person or group of people a team competent, in that they would achieve the desired outcomes consistently and efficiently to the satisfaction of the end customer. In this sense competence is the ability to generate success, satisfaction, value and excellence from the application of knowledge. Given the six facets of competence described above it is evident that the acquisition, assessment, development and management of competence pose a challenge that is beyond traditional education and a curriculum vitae. Furthermore whilst a blend of all six facets is a prerequisite for competence in a given discipline, the significance of each is highly dependent on the context and requirements of a given domain.

Thus for instance theoretical knowledge plays a more significant role in abstract scenarios, whereas experience of application, adaptability and creativity may become more prominent in other, practical domains. Whatever the domain however, a systems-based framework for the evaluation, development and enhancement of competence is needed. This by necessity comprises two interdependent frameworks, one focused on the evaluation and assessment of competence and one on the management and development of competence.

For further information about this topic see Reference 1. In accordance with the WeFA methodology, each driver and inhibitor can be amplified with its own subdrivers and sub-inhibitors, to understand and measure the factors that influence the principal drivers and inhibitors and thus influence overall competence. The IRSE has invested considerable effort into its licensing scheme.

This is important and necessary, but technical competence alone is not sufficient and we must also focus some of our effort on other capabilities that are essential if we are to transform the role of signalling and telecommunications engineering as we have suggested is necessary. These other capabilities may well include: The extent to which the top level WeFA diagram shown in Figure 2 is amplified with further detail in this manner largely depends upon the specific circumstances in which the methodology is being applied.

Determination, benchmarking, evaluation and assessment of the five driver and three inhibitor goals in the above WeFA diagram are performed quantitatively, leading to an overall score that underpins the understanding and further development of competence in a given context. Hessami A. Available online at www. How, R. Davis and A. The discussion was opened by C.

Thompson retired who, after thanking the authors for their valuable contribution and advising that he was very much in agreement with the paper, wished to raise several points. The first concerned the relationship between the strategic railway agenda as a whole and the work of the signal engineer, particularly with reference to the comment that safety comes low in the Maslow hierarchy. Whilst the objective to spend less on safety is not necessarily wrong, the amount spent on safety must be commensurate with the risks you are seeking to manage and if the industry as a whole has a large and radical change agenda, then it is very unlikely that you can reconcile that sort of change profile with reducing your expenditure on safety analysis.

The second problem that arises with placing safety low down in the Maslow hierarchy is in lowering the challenge that comes with managing safety in times of great change. As signal engineers, we inherently manage risk in areas involving great amounts of detail and that requires a certain amount of passion if it is to be done successfully; he believed that we have to retain that passion for safety so that we can motivate people to manage the detail, but without the bureaucracy, and he was interested in how we marry this rationality with the passion for good safety management.

Davis felt that there was both a lot of common ground and also that we would not have a railway without the right level of safety. The first challenge is to make it clear that, whilst it is not our only priority, it must be achieved; safety is not the primary goal but must be a primary goal. It is an emergent property, like economic success, that only occurs when you get everything else right. As an industry we need to find a way to articulate that safety is just as important as it always was, even though there may be other issues on the agenda.

How thought that the major changes have been in how the railway is organised rather than any technological advances; we now have processes in place that endlessly recycle engineering activity and thought that increases the cost irrespective of whether it is for reliability or safety. He also accepted the point that safety cannot be neglected in a fastchanging world and that passion was still required to deliver a safe, reliable railway.

Fisher IRSE President commented that following process led to quality as an emerging byproduct and he wondered if we were at the point where, by following those same processes, that safety also then becomes an emergent by-product in delivering a system. Heijnen Invensys agreed that a safe system was one with no errors and that avoiding those errors in the first place, by the use of factory and simulator testing together with automated test rigs, is the most important part of the process and asked if the UK could achieve this not just by reducing costs but supporting the design process.

How noted that in the UK we still have various handbooks that supported the post-Clapham world but he felt that time had moved on and with most system suppliers today providing a package that had been designed and tested to reduce on-site testing, together with automated design packages that reduced errors to a minimum, this should be recognized and embraced to review these end-toend processes. He recognized that whilst this could be applied relatively easily to new systems, care was still necessary when making changes to the existing infrastructure although he still felt that there was an opportunity to improve in this area too.

Davis thought that our culture was one that accepted errors coming out of the design process rather than reviewing why they occurred in the first place. He also felt the drive to deliver to impossible dates also resulted in increased expenditure and that this needed to be communicated to project managers. McKeown Independent Consultant also thanked the speakers for their exciting paper and questioned if the Institution should be reviewing how we did things and also how we produce off-the-shelf commercially available control systems; he thought we should we be looking beyond what the IRSE stands for and reviewing how it achieves control and capacity reliably by encompassing other related organisations.

How also had strong aspirations that the IRSE would move forward but still had to engage with other parts of the industry to achieve this. Fisher IRSE President refuted the statement completely pointing out that there was sufficient work for the signalling supply industry world-wide already without the need to create false levels of revisions of products; the basis is on volume and not sales.

Davis thought that sometimes we aimed too low but believed that we also need to raise this at higher levels of Government. Hoolan LUL thought that introducing redundancy would help with both reliability and safety issues. He thought that the specification for the provision of axle counters on the Cambrian was questionable and wondered if there were vested interests within the supply industry to continue to provide equipment not necessarily required by the system. Davis thought that the architecture was key; smaller sub-systems are cheaper and simpler although the multi-layer approach also does have challenges, some of which have already been developed in other industries.

Fisher IRSE President thanked the authors for their paper and the interesting debate that followed, particularly the challenge to established principles. Apologies for absence had been received from David McKeown.

S&T Initiatives

Francis How, seconded by Mr. Frans Heijnen and carried that the minutes of the technical meeting held on 8 October be taken as read and they were signed by Mr Fisher as a correct record. He particularly welcomed the IRO members to the meeting. In view of the logistics difficulties, the time-honoured tradition of inviting new members to be introduced to the meeting was deferred.

Mr Knight then went on describe the operating vision and the process used to develop that vision which had involved some consultation with industry. He then described the existing and future business architecture which underpinned the operating vision. Mr Simmons then completed the presentation by describing the potential system architectures which needed to be be able to be tailored to either main or secondary lines. Following the presentation, the discussion was opened by Lynn Collis Halcrow. The Chairman in proposing a vote of thanks, thanked the speakers for a most interesting presentation which had drawn possibly the largest audience he had seen for an evening technical meeting.

Mr Fisher thanked members for their attendance and their contribution, and he went on to thank the Institution of Railway Operators for their generosity in hosting a reception which would take place after the meeting in the Marble Hall, and to which he invited all those present.

Mr Fisher then made announcements of forthcoming events and closed the meeting at by announcing that the next technical meeting in London would be held on the 10 December Each Zone was responsible for the day-to-day operation of the railway, including operations and maintenance. In addition each Zone was responsible for its own operating strategy, as well as infrastructure enhancements and renewals.

A central asset management function existed to provide support to the Zones and oversee that corporate objectives were being satisfied by the Zones. Due to the cost and development risks associated with the ETCS development within the WCRM timescales, this technology was abandoned in favour of conventional multi-aspect signalling. Without a clear future operating strategy the NMC development was finally abandoned. A consequence of the Railtrack Zone management arrangements was the fragmentation of the signalling enhancement and renewals workbank.

This led to uncertainty in the supply chain, with periods of extreme resource shortages resulting in schemes being significantly delayed while at other times industry had significant over capacity. The consequences of the ETCS Level 3 and NMC abandonment also significantly changed the planning assumptions and therefore considerable changes in the workbanks were required, in particular the need to focus signalling renewals primarily to address asset condition and not network enhancements.

Railtrack also introduced new interlocking technology, and whilst it was considered that it could achieve whole life benefits compared to legacy systems, an ad hoc application of the technology across the network would increase maintenance costs. The intent of this philosophy was to provide stable workbanks and consistency of technology in maintenance areas.

With the demise of Railtrack, Network Rail introduced a number of initiatives to stabilise management, including abolishing the Zone structure and replacing with a Territory based arrangement, and introduced a national renewals delivery group. This revised arrangement had a more centralised management structure - this allowed national workbanks to be constructed in conjunction with the delivery units. The Network Rail structure also allowed the opportunity to commence development of a cohesive technology strategy to address existing and future needs.

However it was recognised that it was essential that the development of the technology strategy also needed to be coordinated with a future operating strategy. The development of a future operating strategy in conjunction with a technical strategy against a defined set of future operating principles was considered essential in order to optimise the overall business benefits.

For success, it is essential that an operational vision and strategy spans all areas of the industry to consider all aspects of the operational system. Post-Railtrack and since the accident at Hatfield in the industry has seen progressive and significant performance improvement against a backdrop of increasing demand for passenger and freight services. The challenges for performance and capacity improvements, along with the maturing of relationships within the industry, have created the opportunity to think more strategically about the long term aspirations for operating and controlling the network.

To that extent, within Network Rail the development of a future operating strategy commenced in to provide an end vision and plan for delivering world-class operations and traffic management, enabled by streamlined processes, technologies and systems. Early stages of the work included research into approaches to operating and controlling the network being deployed elsewhere within Europe and the rest of the world, in tandem with process mapping of the current operational processes deployed in Great Britain.

The focus has been on considering on-the- 39 day operation, that is considering the stages between the finalising of each day's operational plan and its post-execution review. It is perceived that significant efficiency, performance and capacity opportunities are available through a strategic review of operational processes in combination with technology advancement.

In reality, the opportunities arise from a shift in our current approach to traffic management of the network combined with technological advancement of in-cab signalling systems and automatic train operation. Planning is a continuous process; 2. Information should be integrated and logically stored only once; 3. Information about any aspect of the service infrastructure, crew diagrams, stock diagrams etc.

Everyone in the process plans against a common plan held centrally; 5. Tools should be predictive and provide decision support; 6. Information should be delivered in an enabling format; 7. Customer information and service information are largely by-products, delivered as soon as the plan changes; 8. There should be one-stop-shop accountability within roles to minimise verbal communications and hand-offs; 9.

Engineering information should be available in real time; Possessions should be integrated with the plan. In the context of the operating strategy, when a train is signalled and proceeds it should be seen as the culmination of years of planning. Our current approach to setting routes is based upon outdated systems, and on the majority of network is largely a human based decision upon the information that becomes visibly apparent in real time. Additionally, currently there are very few decision making tools provided in terms of operating the railway. The principles above, and the systems supporting them, need to evolve to the point whereby planning is a continuous process across the industry, and that changes and variations of timetables, network availability or resources are reflected in real time.

Industry decision making support tools need to be deployed to improve the ability to deliver the aspired outputs from the operational railway, i. Figure 1 illustrates the shift required from today to the future vision. With the exception of High Speed 1, our current approach in Great Britain is to signal the network through lineside signalling. The control locations range from pre installations to those commissioned within the past few weeks and months. From an operating perspective there are limitations provided in terms of safety, performance and reliability that are able to be significantly improved through the deployment of more modern, technically-advanced systems.

From an operating strategy perspective it is perceived that the optimum technology is in-cab signalling with Automatic Train Operation ATO , particularly for denser, metro-style environments. The theme of automation, removing variability and providing greater degrees of freedom to manage capacity utilisation through speed based signalling, would achieve significant benefits in terms of reliability, performance and capacity utilisation.

Removing variability through enhanced traffic management and signalling systems will enable the network to be much more confident in its ability to deliver an optimised daily plan. It will also create the Figure 1 Operating Strategy — now and in the future. And how does this fit with the wider visions for traffic management across Europe and beyond? There are no easy answers to these and other questions.

However an operating vision will be enabled through a clear set of operating principles to design future operational processes along with an associated technology deployment strategy. Realisation of the opportunity will only occur if the industry and wider community accepts that operating principles and the technology strategy require the context of an industry operating vision. This recognises that high level objectives applicable to both operating and engineering requirements are necessary to realise the benefits of the operating and engineering strategies. The concept of developing a set of high level operating principles was launched by Network Rail.

The objective of the Operating Principles was to define the key deliverables against which future systems development and applications would need to be considered. As such by identifying the fundamental output the system needed to deliver they would facilitate innovation in both engineering and operating practice. It was recognised that a number of the Operating Principles may not be cost effective in all applications. In these situations nonprovision would need to be justified. This concept has effectively made the Operating Principles the default requirement for future developments.

Archived from the original on 23 April Retrieved 28 December It can be effective, but it still qualifies as a mechanical system since the pressure is pre-loaded, and requires human action of the same sort that a pure mechanical system requires. Archived from the original on 28 November Retrieved 24 November West Henrietta, New York: Alstom.

Archived from the original PDF on 2 October Retrieved 27 December Rochester, New York. Archived PDF from the original on Railway Signaling and Communications. The New York Times. November 12, London: Rail Safety and Standards Board. Archived from the original PDF on 8 May Retrieved 20 April Archived from the original on 8 October Retrieved 4 May Elliott, W. Block and Interlocking Signals. New York: Locomotive Engineering. Ganguly, Sri Subhasis. Solomon, Brian Minneapolis, MN: Voyageur Press.

Railway signalling. Application of railway signals Cab signalling North American railroad signals Railway semaphore signal. Axle counter Track circuit Track circuit interrupter Treadle. Level crossing signals Crossbuck Wigwag E-signal Wayside horn. Railway infrastructure. Categories : Interlocking systems Railway signalling control Rail infrastructure.

Utica, New York. Related Images. YouTube Videos. Trains move on fixed rails, making them uniquely susceptible to collision. A Class 66 locomotive right is waiting at a red signal while a First Great Western passenger train left crosses its path at a junction. British lower-quadrant semaphore stop signal absolute with subsidiary arm permissive below. Railway track new showing traditional features of ballast, part of sleeper and fixing mechanisms.

Ladder track at Shinagawa Station , Tokyo, Japan. A railroad switch, turnout, or points is a mechanical installation enabling railway trains to be guided from one track to another, such as at a railway junction or where a spur or siding branches off. A right-hand railroad switch with point indicator pointing to right.

S&T Initiatives

Large stations may have hundreds of normal and double switches Frankfurt am Main Central Station. Gas heating keeps a switch free from snow and ice. A switch on the monorail Listowel and Ballybunion Railway , Ireland, in The stones of Stonehenge , in Wiltshire , were erected between and BC. The Bayeux Tapestry depicts the Battle of Hastings , , and the events leading to it. The State House in St. George's , Bermuda. Settled in , the town is the oldest continuously-inhabited English town in the New World. The Treaty of Union led to a single united kingdom encompassing all Great Britain.

The company also operated steamers on Windermere. New Amsterdam , centered in the eventual Lower Manhattan , in , the year England took control and renamed it "New York". Fort George and the city of New York c. With a population of 49,, it is the 15th largest city in the Commonwealth. Postcard depicting Market Street in Downtown Harrisburg as it appeared in Trolley tracks are noticeable along the street. Anti-nuclear protest at Harrisburg in , following the Three Mile Island accident.

Union Switch and Signal is a supplier of railway signaling equipment, systems and services in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Model 14 electro-pneumatic interlocking, installed at Harris Switch Tower , Pennsylvania for the Pennsylvania Railroad. Presbyterian Church at Bound Brook. US 22 in Bound Brook, the largest and busiest highway in the boro. The Reading Company was a company that was involved in the railroad industry in southeast Pennsylvania and neighboring states from until Reading Terminal , circa Philadelphia and Reading Railroad daily passenger train time table, Gold Bond of the Reading Company, issued June Vauclain compound Atlantic engaged in "the fastest regular service in the world", circa The Chicago River is a system of rivers and canals with a combined length of miles that runs through the city of Chicago, including its center.

First electric locomotive , built in by company founder Werner von Siemens. The company built airplanes during World War I , for example this Siemens airplane in British Siemens advertisement from the s era. Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,, inhabitants make it the second most populous city proper of the European Union after London.

The city is one of Germany's 16 federal states.

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Frederick the Great — was one of Europe's enlightened monarch s. Berlin became the capital of the German Empire in and expanded rapidly in the following years. Unter den Linden in Street, Berlin by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Located almost entirely in Eau Claire County, for which it is the county seat, the city had a population of 65, at the census, making it the state's ninth-largest city. Water Street historic district. The University of Wisconsin—Eau Claire. Many relays use an electromagnet to mechanically operate a switch, but other operating principles are also used, such as solid-state relays.

Automotive-style miniature relay, dust cover is taken off. Mechanical railway signalling installations rely on lever frames for their operation to interlock the signals, track locks and points to allow the safe operation of trains in the area the signals control. A mechanical lever frame inside the signal box at Knockcroghery in Ireland.

Lever frame of the signal box Hausen im Tal, Germany: the signals are operated by the red levers, blue levers with Arabic numerals are for points and blue levers with Roman numerals are for track locks. The box on the right of the lever frame is used for manual block signalling; the smaller green levers are used for operating the route locks. The interlocking apparatus is in the box behind the levers. A three-lever ground frame at Kyle of Lochalsh , released by Annett's key.

The city covers It is the second-most populous city in Nebraska and the 71st-largest in the United States. Goodhue-designed Nebraska State Capitol. A Zephyr arriving at East Dubuque, Illinois. Burlington locomotive hauling an express freight circa These locomotives were also used for the Zephyr passenger trains. The passengers, including "Zeph" the burro, that rode the Zephyr on the "Dawn-to-Dusk Dash" gather for a group photo in front of the train after arriving in Chicago on May 26, Centralized traffic control is a form of railway signalling that originated in North America.

CTC consolidates train routing decisions that were previously carried out by local signal operators or the train crews themselves. Computer-based controls for a modern electronic interlocking. The station serves the nearby district of Dingle and is situated on a short section of track between two tunnels, between the now in-filled Toxteth and Harrington Docks.

Image: Brunswick railway station geograph Image: Bridge, Brunswick railway station geograph Image: Brunswick Station geograph. Newsboys for the Utica Saturday Globe, The Utica Marsh is a series of wetlands north of the city. Rochester is a city on the southern shore of Lake Ontario in western New York.

Kodak is headquartered in Rochester. Downtown Rochester and the central business district after dark. Graffiti became a notable symbol of declining service during the s. A stretch of subway track on the 7 Subway Extension. The driver interprets the signal's indication and acts accordingly. The additional lights on Japanese signal 10 show that the points are set for the left route at the next junction.

A Finnish distant signal at the western approach to Muhos station is displaying Expect Stop. In the background, express train 81 is pulling away from the station. Its population was 58, at the census. Shawn Green. This implies a physical connection between the tracks of the two routes, provided by points and signalling. A junction in Baranowicze , Poland, since in Belarus. A double junction in Cardiff , Wales. Junction in track of Singapore LRT. A Eurostar Class in London. The class was built by Alstom in the early to mid s for the eurostar service from England to France.

A fail-safe in engineering is a design feature or practice that in the event of a specific type of failure, inherently responds in a way that will cause no or minimal harm to other equipment, the environment or to people. Globe control valve with pneumatic diaphragm actuator. Such a valve can be designed to fail to safety using spring pressure if the actuating air is lost. Railway semaphore signals. An aircraft lights its afterburner s to maintain full power during an arrested landing aboard an aircraft carrier.

If the arrested landing fails, the plane can safely take off again. He was later a partner in the firm Saxby and Farmer.