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Crew changes

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 10:15 #139163
bugsy
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Has it ever been known in real life that a train fails to stop for a crew change because the driver has forgotten about it?

Quite often whilst playing a sim there are crew changes. I generally set a forward route from the point of the crew change providing that setting the route is possible.
Would this be done in reality or would the signaller wait for advice that the change had taken place?

Everything that you make will be useful - providing it's made of chocolate.
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 10:34 #139164
lazzer
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With regard to passenger services, a crew change will almost certainly be at a booked station stop, so the driver shouldn't forget. A driver forgetting to stop for a crew change at a station would also be guilty of having a "fail to call", so would be in a bit of bother in two ways. However, ECS services might be susceptible to error here, especially if a driver is DROPPING OFF crew at a station on the way to their destination. It's very easy to forget you have travelling crew on board, especially if they're not booked to be there.

I've driven trains before where I had to stop at a station along the route to drop off two guards. Had I forgotten, they wouldn't have been best pleased with me, as it's an hour's train journey back to their stop from where they would have ended up. Also, it was late at night, so a taxi might have been in order. And it was an HST too, so they would have had to pull the passcom to alert me they were still on board.

I also remember driving an empty 153 back to my home station once, and it's usually booked to run driver only. But on this occasion a travelling conductor wanted dropping off at a small unstaffed station en-route. It was late at night, so I agreed to make a 15-second unscheduled stop so he could pop the crew door behind me open and jump out. The signaller would have had no idea what I'd done, as the signals are few and far between in that area, and it was literally a stop and go job.

As for freight, you'd think forgetting to stop would happen more often. But I can assure you (from experience) that drivers are very switched on to the earliest opportunity that they can get off a train and have a break (or go home), so to sail past your booked stopping point would require you to be away with the fairies on most occasions

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 10:45 #139165
bill_gensheet
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lazzer in post 139164 said:

As for freight, you'd think forgetting to stop would happen more often. But I can assure you (from experience) that drivers are very switched on to the earliest opportunity that they can get off a train and have a break (or go home), so to sail past your booked stopping point would require you to be away with the fairies on most occasions :)
Some of the information gathered for my Scottish sim TT's suggests not only freight drivers ! I have several quotes for last trains at last-but-one stations turning back ECS early if already at zero passengers.

Most obvious was the last couple of Glasgow - Whifflet services returning as ECS from Langloan Jn instead of going on to Whifflet and so avoid all the messing around at Mossend or Sunnyside that entailed.

Bill

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 11:18 #139166
Splodge
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At my depot, most changes are at Piccadilly or Oxford Road so very little chance of forgetting (and most drivers know very well when they're booked to finish or go for a break!)

However, morning shunts with double units at Stockport require us to drop off a second driver at Stockport (or, in the evening collect one). It's second nature to confirm the assistance is present; and in some cases to check whether two units will actually turn up as this may enable a flyer (for example, this train currently runs as a two car https://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/S04488/2021-04-28/detailed#allox_id=0 but to save creating a whole new diagram when it gets strengthened to 4, a driver and an assist are rostered from Piccadilly. This is the booked drivers last move, whilst the assist has to do more moves on arrival at Stockport - so the assist will often take the train, allowing the driver to get away early!)

What can cause issues is collecting guards from Stockport - some jobs the guard travels pass to where the train commences passenger service; others join the train at Stockport for the ECS trip. Our diagrams are usually pretty clear, but mistakes do happen from time to time.

There's the right way, the wrong way and the railway.
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 11:35 #139167
TUT
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I know it's on a different network but you might find this tube-related blog entry interesting, assuming you can decode the abbreviations:

https://aslefshrugged.blogspot.com/2010/08/cctv-failure-at-tcr-eb-yesterday-one-of.html

TCR = Tottenham Court Road
EB = Eastbound
CSA = Customer Service Assistant
LES = Leytonstone
LOU = Loughton
NOA = North Acton
EAB = Ealing Broadway
TOp = Train Operator = Driver
Wood Lane is the Control Centre

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 11:53 #139168
Hap
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I've been forgotten about once. ECS were a pain. Pass to Stirling to be dropped off and there goes Stirling. We also had one where ECS would pick up crew at STG. Happened so many times that it was scrapped and we all just got booked taxis in our diagrams.

Quote:
Most obvious was the last couple of Glasgow - Whifflet services returning as ECS from Langloan Jn instead of going on to Whifflet and so avoid all the messing around at Mossend or Sunnyside that entailed.

Bill
Lucky them. Could've saved half an hour of the day if that was happening when I worked the route. ha. Then it was ECS to Motherwell Weighs which added more time to the day to get a taxi back to Central. Can never win.

Apart from the WHL and FNL where crew changes can are adapted/amended to counteract delays, the rest are done at main stations or stations with PNB facilities. So out-with Central/QST/EDB/INV & ABD stations they are Stirling, Perth, Dundee. Haymarket is sometimes used adhoc if there are spare crews to bring a service out of EDB. West of the country Hyndland/Dalmuir though the people being left here are Ticket Examiners. Airdrie and Motherwell at the east side of Glasgow.

But as said in the other posts in passenger service this shouldn't be missed, I can see on my diagram what staff should be on board between X, Y & Z. I'll go look for them before departing or keep an eye out at stations if it's they are boarding en route. ECS are the ones to watch.
And as Splodge says, Learning the moves that depots have to relieve another staff members for an early finish is advantageousm, but it is a mine field. Delays kick in and everyone is out of position.. more Taxis and trains blocking lines.

There was a time where driver and guard were on shift all day together... same diagram, same services, same trains. No hassle. No we're stuck with limited route knowledge and can't divert this way because driver doesn't know it, or can't go that way because Guard doesn't know it. Can't take that train.... we don't sign it.... Anyway that's another tangent.

In terms of setting routes... Unless you're being dispatched and use of TRTS, where our station staff have to check all booked crew is there, most of the time routes are set already. I.e Stirling, Perth, Dundee. By the time it's realised that there's no crew at the train at these stations the signaller is quick on the phone to station staff or train crew supervisor and sometimes route pulled after it's clear that there is no driver in the cab. I've phoned the box myself to confirm that there's no driver. last thing signaller needs is to pull the route and the driver has just shown up and not been advised and see's the reversion.

HAP
Last edited: 28/04/2021 at 11:58 by Hap
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 13:40 #139169
Andy174
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DOO created such issues sometimes on BR, one of the turns at my depot was to work an empty coal train to Betteshanger which was DOO from Gillingham alebit with a secondman on board, we were scheduled to pick the guard up at Faversham but running on clear signals my driver one day just forgot as I did and we sailed straight through and the guard had to catch us up at Betteshanger! On the current South Eastern the fast Cannon Streets in the evening peak are booked DOO from London but the route requires a conductor from Swanley who is booked to travel pass on the same service, on quite a few occasions the service has ground to a halt at Swanley with the driver discovering enroute that for whatever reason the condutor wasn't on board!
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 18:02 #139175
Late Turn
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Hap in post 139168 said:

But as said in the other posts in passenger service this shouldn't be missed, I can see on my diagram what staff should be on board between X, Y & Z. I'll go look for them before departing or keep an eye out at stations if it's they are boarding en route. ECS are the ones to watch.
And as Splodge says, Learning the moves that depots have to relieve another staff members for an early finish is advantageousm, but it is a mine field. Delays kick in and everyone is out of position.. more Taxis and trains blocking lines.

Interesting - our diagrams only show traincrew travelling pass on a service if it's ECS - it's never shown on passenger services. On one occasion, I'd just been given two on the buzzer when a driver who was meant to be travelling pass came down the footbridge steps at full tilt. I only knew that someone was meant to pass because it's a regular thing on that job and he's shown to detach a portion later in the journey - I'd seen him and spoken to him in the messroom, then assumed that he'd gone out to the train before me when he'd actually gone to the wrong platform! Where we go ECS from our home station at least, the platform staff check that all are present and correct. There's one particular fiddle where a driver booked to travel pass for 2½ hours to bring a later service back can have an extra hour in bed and travel up on the service that forms his back working, but it can cause some consternation if it's not arranged through the proper channels as the platform staff will be looking for him. Then again, on another occasion, I looked at my job card and saw that one of the drivers shown as travelling pass on the ECS that I was to drive was...me!

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 19:31 #139179
Hap
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Late Turn in post 139175 said:
Hap in post 139168 said:

But as said in the other posts in passenger service this shouldn't be missed, I can see on my diagram what staff should be on board between X, Y & Z. I'll go look for them before departing or keep an eye out at stations if it's they are boarding en route. ECS are the ones to watch.
And as Splodge says, Learning the moves that depots have to relieve another staff members for an early finish is advantageousm, but it is a mine field. Delays kick in and everyone is out of position.. more Taxis and trains blocking lines.

Interesting - our diagrams only show traincrew travelling pass on a service if it's ECS - it's never shown on passenger services. On one occasion, I'd just been given two on the buzzer when a driver who was meant to be travelling pass came down the footbridge steps at full tilt. I only knew that someone was meant to pass because it's a regular thing on that job and he's shown to detach a portion later in the journey - I'd seen him and spoken to him in the messroom, then assumed that he'd gone out to the train before me when he'd actually gone to the wrong platform! Where we go ECS from our home station at least, the platform staff check that all are present and correct. There's one particular fiddle where a driver booked to travel pass for 2½ hours to bring a later service back can have an extra hour in bed and travel up on the service that forms his back working, but it can cause some consternation if it's not arranged through the proper channels as the platform staff will be looking for him. Then again, on another occasion, I looked at my job card and saw that one of the drivers shown as travelling pass on the ECS that I was to drive was...me!
There's an example of an old diagram. (Trimmed down not to disclose any other info). Shows us everyone that's on each train and between what points, obviously doesn't show you your own turn number. one of those D's is your driver and the others are travelling pass, sometimes the Guards are down to ASSIST , some are PASS, that's detailed on their own diagrams on the other side with the simplifier on it.

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Last edited: 28/04/2021 at 19:32 by Hap
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 19:49 #139180
Late Turn
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Hap in post 139179 said:
There's an example of an old diagram. (Trimmed down not to disclose any other info). Shows us everyone that's on each train and between what points, obviously doesn't show you your own turn number. one of those D's is your driver and the others are travelling pass, sometimes the Guards are down to ASSIST , some are PASS, that's detailed on their own diagrams on the other side with the simplifier on it.

Ta, always interesting to see how other companies do it! The majority of our ECS is DOO so the guard is generally shown to pass (we have very little booked ECS work without a guard travelling pass though).

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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 20:12 #139182
Hap
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Late Turn in post 139180 said:
Hap in post 139179 said:
There's an example of an old diagram. (Trimmed down not to disclose any other info). Shows us everyone that's on each train and between what points, obviously doesn't show you your own turn number. one of those D's is your driver and the others are travelling pass, sometimes the Guards are down to ASSIST , some are PASS, that's detailed on their own diagrams on the other side with the simplifier on it.

Ta, always interesting to see how other companies do it! The majority of our ECS is DOO so the guard is generally shown to pass (we have very little booked ECS work without a guard travelling pass though).
Defo, I've seen Northern diagrams and TPX just through other mates. Don't think I could get used to anything else. Ours seem a whole lot more simple. (Dunno if that's saying something about the payroll). lol.

HAP
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Crew changes 28/04/2021 at 20:54 #139184
Splodge
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Our diagrams only mention when we should have an assisting driver, or if we have a guard when running ECS - the only exception being taxis where they would show every person booked in it (when we could have multiple people in one!).

That said, station staff at Piccadilly know which ECS trains should have additional crew so they don't bell us out until everyone is present - but they're also in radio contact with the shift managers should things change.

There's the right way, the wrong way and the railway.
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Crew changes 03/05/2021 at 12:35 #139268
clive
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Have I ever told the story here of how the train I was on lost a guard and had to kidnap another one when they found out?
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Crew changes 03/05/2021 at 12:54 #139269
Sacro
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clive in post 139268 said:
Have I ever told the story here of how the train I was on lost a guard and had to kidnap another one when they found out?
Did you stop, or is there some kind of mailbag-esque hook system for them?

Last edited: 03/05/2021 at 12:54 by Sacro
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Crew changes 03/05/2021 at 13:39 #139270
jc92
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Sacro in post 139269 said:
clive in post 139268 said:
Have I ever told the story here of how the train I was on lost a guard and had to kidnap another one when they found out?
Did you stop, or is there some kind of mailbag-esque hook system for them?
I'm sure I've read about that in a Thomas the tank book.

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Crew changes 03/05/2021 at 14:19 #139271
bill_gensheet
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I was on a train where the guard was removed and arrested at Reading. Some kind of sting by the 'gold cap' TTI's.
train left standing in the (old) P4 blocking it up - but that was fairly normal for Reading especially back then.

Bill

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Crew changes 07/05/2021 at 19:19 #139352
ajax103
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Hap in post 139168 said:


In terms of setting routes... Unless you're being dispatched and use of TRTS, where our station staff have to check all booked crew is there, most of the time routes are set already. I.e Stirling, Perth, Dundee. By the time it's realised that there's no crew at the train at these stations the signaller is quick on the phone to station staff or train crew supervisor and sometimes route pulled after it's clear that there is no driver in the cab. I've phoned the box myself to confirm that there's no driver. last thing signaller needs is to pull the route and the driver has just shown up and not been advised and see's the reversion.
That reminds me of a incident that happened on the platform back when I was a dispatcher bearing in mind the drivers usually were in the cab and set up ready to depart well before departure.

Anyway, one morning a driver took the first train from London to my station and as they had nearly 30 minutes before they took it back to London.

Anyway when I gave the CD (close doors) I got no response and I gave it 3 more times before a passenger said do you realise that you've got no driver?

Went to check and no driver, couldn't find them anywhere on station, all the while I had trains backing up all the way back to Alexandra Palace waiting for this train to vacate the platform. So had to ask the signaller to put the signal back.

Turns out this driver decided they would take 30 winks and ended up being responsible for the delay doh

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