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Points Failures
Effect
What to do

Points Failures

Points failures can occur from time to time, which is shown by a loss of detection at one position or the other. If the commanded position is not the same as the detected position then they are said to be out of correspondance.

Effect

When the loss of detection occurs, it prevents any routes being proved in that direction. It may well be that routes set using the other direction will prove correctly and the signal will show a proceed aspect .

Note that other routes, not passing through the points, may also not prove if the flank locking protection for the route involves the failed points.

What to do

Generally there is little you can do when a points failure occurs, other than wait for it to be fixed. All you can do is run trains through the one arm of the points still available. Depending on its location this may be no problem, a minor irritation as the train route can be corrected later (e.g. at crossovers between slow and fast lines), or it can totally block the route (e.g. at a major junction like Hitchin on King's Cross simulation or Ely North on Cambridge). Note that points sometimes fail in both positions, in which case there's nothing to do but wait for them to be fixed.

If the failure is at a junction along the line from a major station, it will pay to hold back at the station any trains that need the blocked route, so as to allow other trains that can use the available route to run forward.

In multiplay, it's helpful to swing and lock the points in the available position, and place a reminder collar on the points, to show the other signallers the problem. They may be able to assist by re-routing or holding trains back.


Last edited by GeoffM on 15/09/2016 at 03:00