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Level crossing stupidity...

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On 14/06/2019 at 11:08, The Stationmaster said:

No - read it again.  He was not wrongly advised but instead had made an incorrect assumption - for whatever reason - that the train had passed and informed the Signalman(ler) to that effect.  

 

One thing that nobody seems to have picked up on is that this is a double line ...... maybe a train had, indeed, 'just' passed in one direction ( maybe five / ten / fifteen minutes before the farmer attempted to cross ) whereas the danger actually lay in the opposite direction !!?!

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8 hours ago, caradoc said:

 

One solution could be that the Signaller does not authorise the user to cross until they can see from TC indications that the train has definitely passed the LC, however that would cause (even) longer waiting times and possibly result in more misuse, particularly at busy times if there were minimal intervals between trains in section.

 

Which in some cases could mean a wait of 15-20 minutes (althoigh potentially only around 10 minutes at most at this. crossing).  and all it then needs is a train in the opposite direction at a double line crossing and the vehicle driver will get hacked off with waiting and go anyway.

 

The only way you could do it is to split up tc (or axle counter) section indications and - as I said above - you're back into spending a lot of money.

6 hours ago, Wickham Green said:

Would it not be possible to create a device that detects a train at / near the crossing ( axle counter technology ) and which the bobby / bobbie can interrogate ( mobile phone technology ) to determine when something last passed that way ? ......... shouldn't cost too many meggabuxxx !

So as I've already said - the costs could run out of all proportion to the alternative of accepting the limited risk or closing the crossing.  The only way the Signalman/ler can tell where the train is is from having continuous indications or having a TD based interrogation device which is reliable enough to automatically check that each train has passed any particular crossing.   All of which means signalling modifications which takes you tio design office time and ever spiralling costs as ideas and circuitry are assessed and them more costs as the kit is installed and tested.

 

Probably cheaper (considerably) and quicker to close the crossing in many cases.

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5 hours ago, Wickham Green said:

One thing that nobody seems to have picked up on is that this is a double line ...... maybe a train had, indeed, 'just' passed in one direction ( maybe five / ten / fifteen minutes before the farmer attempted to cross ) whereas the danger actually lay in the opposite direction !!?!

The Signalman would take that into account when asking the user if the train has cleared the crossing.  I've never heard of it being a particular problem and a good many years back my then patch included an accomodation crossing a on a  busy double track main line route. (the big problem there was, as ever, one of the regular users leaving the gates open).

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19 hours ago, JDW said:

Just seen this one, that genuinely had me scared... 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VbjE7ZKpHxY

 

Still don't understand what possesses people to stop on the track though rather than drive through the lowered barrier ore reverse through the one that they've already damaged, surely you'd do everything you could to get out of the way, for your own sake if not for others...

 

Please - NEVER - NEVER, attempt to take up teaching!!!!

 

Regards

 

Julian

 

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Think I'm safe on that front, can't stand kids!

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17 hours ago, The Stationmaster said:

.......... So as I've already said - the costs could run out of all proportion to the alternative of accepting the limited risk ..............................

Which beggars the old question - What IS the value of a human life ? ................................... yeah, I know it depends on the human !

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Posted (edited)

Are you suggesting that they put in a bridge which is probably as close as you can get to a "safe" crossing of a railway? It was a little used farm crossing, used by people who were used to crossing the line. In this one case the user would seem to have made an assumption that cost him his life. The railway was not held to blame. An unfortunate accident...

 

 

Of course the railways could always close all user-worked crossings and footpaths to make it all very safe for the few that misuse them, but I suspect the uproar that would cause would be tremendous though it would make the railways much safer...

Edited by Hobby
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8 minutes ago, Wickham Green said:

Which beggars the old question - What IS the value of a human life ? ................................... yeah, I know it depends on the human !

 

It depends on how much money you have.  No one wants to put a value on a life, but as funds are limited you have to save as many lives as you can with what you have got. 

 

For example, say you have £10m to spend on schemes to improve safety, and two options, both costing £10m. One is likely to save 1 life, one is likely to save 10 lives. Logically you pick the latter and save 10 lives. Now are you saying that a life is worth £1m, but not £10m? Of course not, you are just trying to save as many lives as possible. And that is why a life gets a figure put on it. If it costs more than that figure to save a life, then you are better off spending it on something else and saving more lives with the same money.  So you end up seemingly putting a value on a life.

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54 minutes ago, Titan said:

 

It depends on how much money you have.  No one wants to put a value on a life, but as funds are limited you have to save as many lives as you can with what you have got. 

 

For example, say you have £10m to spend on schemes to improve safety, and two options, both costing £10m. One is likely to save 1 life, one is likely to save 10 lives. Logically you pick the latter and save 10 lives. Now are you saying that a life is worth £1m, but not £10m? Of course not, you are just trying to save as many lives as possible. And that is why a life gets a figure put on it. If it costs more than that figure to save a life, then you are better off spending it on something else and saving more lives with the same money.  So you end up seemingly putting a value on a life.

 

I agree that as there isn't infinite money available to spend on safety you have to in some sense put a value on a human life, but I don't think it has to be directly comparative like that.

 

I believe that set values are used in justifying spending on safety, though how one comes up with a value to use I have no idea.  I have read that the value used on the railways is higher than on roads but I don't know if it's true.

 

I

 

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Posted (edited)
13 minutes ago, Coryton said:

I believe that set values are used in justifying spending on safety, though how one comes up with a value to use I have no idea.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value_of_life - includes some examples of the values used in various jurisdictions, b ut not the UK.

 

According to this report from the University of Bristol, the UK's calculation of the "Value of a Prevented Fatality" (VPF) is highly dubious.  According to the table on page 3 of that report, the UK VFP in 2016 was £1.84M - which is significantly lower than any of the numbers quoted in that Wiki article for other countries.

 

 

Edited by ejstubbs
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53 minutes ago, ejstubbs said:

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value_of_life - includes some examples of the values used in various jurisdictions, b ut not the UK.

 

According to this report from the University of Bristol, the UK's calculation of the "Value of a Prevented Fatality" (VPF) is highly dubious.  According to the table on page 3 of that report, the UK VFP in 2016 was £1.84M - which is significantly lower than any of the numbers quoted in that Wiki article for other countries.

 

 

 

I don't know how you could come up with a non-dubious value anyway, but there has to be something.

 

 

 

 

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I don't think this has been on before, some real Darwin award candidates here in Poland:

 

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Posted (edited)

The text halfway through explains that they succeeded, but the rest didn’t have such luck.  In other words, the second half depicts a number of heavy impacts, if not fatalities.

Edited by EddieB
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What was the driver of the blue van thinking - to drive into the side of a train which was already on the crossing???

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There were a number of fatalities of motorists in the 1980s when they drove into the side of trains that were already going over level crossings on Northern Ireland Railways

 

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There was also an incident on Croydon tramlink a few years ago when a pedestrian walked into the side of a tram!

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8 hours ago, RJS1977 said:

There was also an incident on Croydon tramlink a few years ago when a pedestrian walked into the side of a tram!

I bet they were on a mobile phone or texting...

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8 hours ago, RJS1977 said:

There was also an incident on Croydon tramlink a few years ago when a pedestrian walked into the side of a tram!

I had a pedestrian walk into the side of a car I was driving in (very) slow traffic.

This was long before mobile phones.

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47 minutes ago, melmerby said:

I had a pedestrian walk into the side of a car I was driving in (very) slow traffic.

This was long before mobile phones.

Probably had the latest gadget though ....... a Walkman !

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16 hours ago, Colin_McLeod said:

There were a number of fatalities of motorists in the 1980s when they drove into the side of trains that were already going over level crossings on Northern Ireland Railways

 

 

I believe that's one of the reasons many North American locomotives and railcars have Scotchlite (reflective tape) on the sides of the frame - so that they stand out in car headlights on level crossings at night. The markings are known as "conspicuity stripes". :no2:

 

 

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10 hours ago, RJS1977 said:

There was also an incident on Croydon tramlink a few years ago when a pedestrian walked into the side of a tram!

There was, and he was on a mobile phone at the time. More recently there was the incident involving a young person who cycled across a foot crossing on the Wimbledon line, right in front of a tram and came off very much the worse for it. He was plugged into his headphones/earphones at the time, and despite being high on the list for a Darwin Award, it was the tramway that got censured by the RAIB.

 

Jim

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The incident I was thinking of involved a young woman....

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Here's one from Australia. The two cars had a minor incident and got out to exchange details, with the cars left on the crossing while they did so!

 

The insurance companies, are going to have fun sorting that out!

 

https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/peak-hour-chaos-after-train-slams-into-two-cars-on-pakenham-line-20190715-p5277l.html

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