The Anonymous Widower

London Underground: Safety Checks Cause Metropolitan Line Disruption

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

These are the first three paragraphs.

Urgent safety checks are being carried out on trains running on the Metropolitan line section of the Tube, Transport for London (TfL) has said.

TfL is warning of severe disruption as engineers check over the entire fleet of trains – which also run on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines.

The trains were only introduced in 2010, but TfL said a fault had been identified on some of their wheels.

Obviously, safety is a priority and it will take some time to check all of the trains.

I have used these trains several times in the last few days and there are extended intervals between services.

Could Crossrail Come To The Rescue?

Consider.

  • Crossrail has interchanges with the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and the Metropolitan Lines at Whitechapel, Liverpool Street, Moorgate, Farringdon, Paddington and Ealing Broadway.
  • Crossrail trains have been running between Paddington and Abbey Wood for a few months.
  • Crossrail has good connections to the Central and Jubilee Lines.

Perhaps, opening Crossrail at a lower frequency may take the pressure off the system?

 

April 28, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Cycle Paths To Run Alongside HS2 For 200 Miles

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on The Times.

This is the first paragraph.

The route of HS2, the high-speed railway line from London to Manchester, is to become an unlikely tourist and leisure destination, with a trail for cyclists and walkers that will eventually run for 200 miles.

The article says this about the design of the proposed trail.

  • The cycle path is expected to be 3m wide.
  • The walkers path is expected to be 2.5m wide.
  • The two paths would be separated by a grass verge.

I am pleased that the combined path will be set at some distance from the High Speed Two track, as I don’t like to be near speeding trains.

I have some thoughts.

Rest Areas

In some places, there should be rest areas. Some of these could be close to towns or villages, where there is a convenient cafe or pub.

In Burnley, there is even a Premier Inn on the banks of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and the manager told me, that in the summer, they get cyclists staying the night, as it’s the mid-point between Leeds and Liverpool.

Mobility Scooters

Will rules for these to use the trail be developed?

Health And Safety

In Edinburgh to Inverness in the Cab of an HST, I talked about a memorable trip, that I made to Inverness.

The route to Inverness is for a long way alongside the A90 and driver told me how on one trip, there was a serious multiple car crash in heavy snow.

So he stopped the train, alerted the emergency services  and even asked the passengers, if there were any medical staff on board.

Obviously, stopping a High Speed Two train from 225 mph is not as practical as stopping an InterCity 125 from perhaps 90 mph.

But the drivers’ eyes or the CCTV systems on the train would probably spot a minor accident on the path, so the appropriate assistance can be called.

Conclusion

I like this idea.

It should be fully developed.

 

 

April 17, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | 1 Comment

Barriers And Planters On The London Overground Platforms At Clapham Junction Station

To get home from Feltham station, after my visit this morning to see the new bridge, which I wrote about in The Completed Bridge At Feltham Station, I changed trains at Clapham Junction station.

I noticed that a barrier has been put up between the current two Overground platforms; 1 and 2.

.I suspect it is for safety reasons, as it will certainly stop passengers falling off the platform.

I also noticed that planters had been placed where I suspect that the new Platform 0 will be built.

Note.

  1. If the track is to placed between the planters and the platform, the space could be a bit small.
  2. Or is the platform going to be rebuilt a bit narrower?
  3. It also looks like the platform won’t be long enough for the planned eight-car train.

I also took these pictures of what looks to be a Fire Exit.

Could it be a temporary entrance, that will be used if there is a lot of work going on about the Grant Road entrance to create the new platform?

I also took these pictures of the Eastern end of the platform.

Considering, that the Class 378 train is five cars and an eight-car train would be sixty percent longer, it looks to me, that they will have to extend the platform, behind the temporary entrance or perhaps further towards the East.

Or could Network Rail have called up Baldrick, and asked him for one of his cunning plans?

Consider.

  • Currently, there is a one train per hour (tph) between Milton Keynes and Clapham Junction stations, run by Southern.
  • The service used to run between Milton Keynes and South Croydon stations.
  • There surely is a need for a high-frequency service between the High Speed Two station at Old Oak Common and Clapham Junction station.
  • Currently, there is no planned link between Crossrail and the West London Line.

Hythe Road station is planned to be on the West London Line and will serve the High Speed Two station at Old Oak Common.

This Transport for London map, shows the position of the proposed Hythe Road station with respect to High Speed Two and Crossrail.

Note.

  1. The West London Line to and from Clapham Junction goes down the East of the map.
  2. The North London Line to and from Richmond goes down the West of the map.
  3. The current Milton Keynes and Clapham Junction service doesn’t go through the site of Hythe Road station, but somehow sneaks round on the freight line in the map.

Wikipedia describes the proposal for Hythe Road station like this.

Hythe Road railway station would be situated about 700 metres (770 yards) from the mainline Old Oak Common station. Construction work would involve re-aligning the track along a new railway embankment (built slightly to the north of the existing line) and demolishing industrial units along Salter Street, on land currently owned by a vehicle sales company (‘Car Giant’). The station structure will sit on a viaduct, with a bus interchange underneath. The station will incorporate 3 platforms, allowing through services between Stratford and Clapham Junction with an additional bay platform to accommodate terminating services from Clapham Junction.

I can envisage an eight tph service between Clapham Junction and Hythe Road stations, made up something like this.

  • Four tph between Stratford and Clapham Junction stations
  • One tph between Milton Keynes and Clapham Junction stations
  • Three tph between Hythe Road and Clapham Junction stations

Note.

  1. Services would stop at Shepherd’s Bush, Kensington (Olympia), West Brompton and Imperial Wharf.
  2. Two platforms at Clapham Junction station could easily handle eight tph.
  3. The London Overground’s five car Class 378 trains would probably be long enough for the shuttle.
  4. There is even the possibility of running the Milton Keynes and Clapham Junction service with five car trains, to void the expense of creating an eight-car platform at Clapham Junction station.

It would be better if the Milton Keynes and Clapham Junction service could go through Hythe Road station. But this might be difficult to arrange.

Conclusion

An eight tph service through Old Oak Common could be a nice little add-on for both High Speed Two and Crossrail.

January 12, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Foot Crossing Obstacle Detection Using AI

The title of this post, is the same as that as this article on the Railway Gazette.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Seibu Railway is to start testing a newly-developed AI-assisted warning system for detecting obstacles on foot crossings at two stations on the Ikebukuro Line in the suburbs of Tokyo.

The article is a detailed description of how the Japanese are using technology to make foot crossing a lot safer.

I can see applications for this technology not just on the rail system, but in other situations as well.

 

 

January 2, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | 3 Comments

Heavy Fire Doors At Moorgate Stations – 6th December 2021

They’re certainly not stinting on safety in Moorgate station.

These doors will cut off the passages between Crossrail and the Northern Line.

December 11, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Storm Arwen: Image Shows Severe Damage To Train Following Red Weather Warning

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the Scotsman.

It shows a dramatic picture of a Class 170 train, that was hit by a tree, that was blown onto the line.

The incident happened on the Borders Railway and luckily no-one was hurt.

December 2, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Track Monitoring System To Be Tested On Chiltern Line

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Railway Gazette.

This is the first paragraph.

Network Rail is to undertake in-service trials with DB Systemtechnik’s CTM2·0 continuous track monitoring system on a Chiltern Railways MkIII driving van trailer operating in passenger service between London Marylebone and Birmingham.

This seems to me to be a good idea.

  • The German system appears to be comprehensive and has been in service for seven years.
  • There is a lot of space in the back of a driving van trailer.
  • It probably can do much of the work of the New Measurement Train, but more often.

It could surely be applied to other routes.

 

The picture shows the driving van trailers on the London-ends of a pair of InterCity 225s at King’s Cross.

Some Open Access Operators are also looking at the possibility of running short InterCity 225 sets.

It would also be possible to create extra Measurement Trains, by coupling an instrumented driving van trailer to an appropriate locomotive and a couple of coaches.

As a Control Engineer, who has analysed a lot of data in his working life, it could improve rail safety by testing rail lines more often.

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

ATO Stop and Safe Location On High Speed Two Classic-Compatible Trains

This document on the Government web site is the Train Technical Specification for High Speed Two trains.

There is a Section 8.6.2, which is entitled ATO Stop and Safe Location

This is said.

ATO Stop is an additional function compared to the ATO over ETCS SRS. The purpose of
this function is to enable the Train Captain to command the Train to stop at the next Safe
Location. A Safe Location is a pre-defined location on the HS2 Network where Trains can
wait safely, and evacuation can be carried out if necessary. If it is not necessary to make an
emergency brake application, this enables more control of where Trains make un-planned
stops.

Perhaps all vehicles on motorways need to be fitted with a similar system.

August 26, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | 2 Comments

Ryanair Expects Boeing 737 Max Jet Clearance Soon

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Ryanair has said it expects the controversial Boeing 737 Max plane to be allowed to fly again in the US in the next month or so.

You won’t catch me booking a flight, with any airline, that flies any of these planes for at least thirty years.

I actually feel, that technology will overtake these planes long before that.

  • They are still made traditionally from aluminium, unlike the competing Airbus A320, which is made from composite, which offers weight and aerodynamic advantages.
  • There is no way, the 737 MAX could be converted to zero-carbon flying.
  • Zero-carbon aircraft will be flying by 2030.

I also think, that it when passengers have a choice, they will avoid the aircraft.

October 10, 2020 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

Pakistan International Airlines Grounds Third Of Pilots After Crash That Killed 98 People

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article in The Times.

This paragraph chilled me.

Pilots without adequate experience and technical knowledge obtained their qualifications by paying others to take their examinations, officials said.

I don’t think Pakistan International Airlines will be high on my list of preferred airlines.

June 26, 2020 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | 1 Comment