• Runaway Train Down Under

  • Discussion about railroad topics everywhere outside of North America.
Discussion about railroad topics everywhere outside of North America.

Moderators: Komachi, David Benton

  by Jeff Smith
 
https://www.foxnews.com/world/runaway-t ... icials-say" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Runaway train travels nearly 60 miles in Australia before being deliberately derailed, officials say
...
The train, with four locomotives and 268 cars, traveled 57 miles before being "deliberately derailed" at a siding about 74 miles outside of Port Headland.

The train was traveling about 110 miles per hour when it was derailed, according to a Reuters analysis. The transport safety agency said the train sustained "substantial" damage.
...
  by george matthews
 
The cost of that event must show that it would be worth spending whatever it would cost to have a device that detected whether there is a human in the cab, and disable the motion controls if the cab is empty. I am sure it wouldn't cost the possible millions of the crash and damage to the locomotives and perhaps the rest of the train.
  by David Benton
 
When I first read this elsewhere , I thought it was going to be one of the new remote control (unmanned) trains that had crashed.
I agree with George , the technology is there to be able to either automatically or remotely detect this kind of incident , and apply the brakes.
I guess these trains don't have "deadman" pedals.
  by george matthews
 
I guess these trains don't have "deadman" pedals.
In fact that would be the simplest and cheapest method of preventing such an event. A device that required regular human input would also serve.
  by ExCon90
 
I thought they were virtually universal today; maybe there's more to this than meets the eye. Whether Fox News will do any follow-up is another matter.
  by george matthews
 
ExCon90 wrote:I thought they were virtually universal today; maybe there's more to this than meets the eye. Whether Fox News will do any follow-up is another matter.
It was a surprise that the train could function without a person in the cab. It is reasonable to assume there was either no dead man's hand apparatus, or that it was disabled in some way.
  by ExCon90
 
It's not unknown for an engineer to disable the deadman or alerter, finding it an intrusive nuisance. The investigation will probably discover the underlying cause, but the news media may have lost interest by then.
  by george matthews
 
ExCon90 wrote:It's not unknown for an engineer to disable the deadman or alerter, finding it an intrusive nuisance. The investigation will probably discover the underlying cause, but the news media may have lost interest by then.
I think to disable that system should be an offence requiring dismissal at least. The cost alone must be considerable. 4 locomotives don't come cheap.
  by David Benton
 
http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/articl ... ehxL4SELqs" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

From the Facebook page (closed group )i got the link from, it appears these trains have a form of ECP braking . A wire disconnecting in this system seems to have stopped the train initially. The driver applied the loomotive(s) independent brakes , but these are not enough to hold the train by themselves. It then appears the electric brake system released as programmed after an hour, and the train rolled off without the driver. It seems the driver should also have set the whole trains emergency brake .
Nobody seems sure why the ECP brakes are programmed to release after an hour.
Note : this is my interpretation, off a Facebook page that appears to have New Zealand Drivers/engineers , that now drive / drove Australian ore trains as members. Apart from the link , none of it is official opinion of any rail operator or safety organisation.
  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Fox News wrote:train was traveling about 110 miles per hour when it was derailed, according to a Reuters analysis. The transport safety agency said the train sustained "substantial" damage
"Klicks" vice miles.

But I don't wish to discount the serious nature of this incident, for had there been civilization and HAZMAT, there would be a Megantic.

Oh, and aren't fusees great for taking away that "annoyance" of having to keep your foot on that "Deadman's pedal"?
  by David Benton
 
Noted , Mr Norman , a easy to make mistake in "translating" a Aussie news story for American media .
110 k,/h is around 68 mph.
  by David Benton
 
https://thewest.com.au/business/mining/ ... yAjUqHZwgY" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

"To the unsuspecting eye it is merely a pile of junk in a scrap metal yard greeting motorists arriving and leaving Port Hedland on Great Northern Highway.

At best it is a blight on the landscape, but to BHP it represents a public relations train wreck after two locomotives and 268 carriages carrying 30,000 tonnes of iron ore crashed into the red dirt near the Pilbara town in November."
  by David Benton
 
"BHP faces an unfair dismissal fight after it sacked the driver of an iron ore train that was forcibly derailed last year after a near-100 kilometre dash with no one at the controls."
https://www.watoday.com.au/business/com ... rsf8Ao0ZyY" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I guess this will hinge on whether the Driver/Engineer should have known to set the independent engine brakes, based on his professional knowledge, or whether he should have been trained by the company / it should be in the procedures etc.

This is a minefield for employers, having to cover every possible occurrence in training/procedures, when much of it should be covered by common sense , or the employees training to achieve their professions certification.