A few questions about train drivers

 
  Milkomeda Chief Train Controller

A few questions that have pondered my mind for awhile that I've never asked is

Are train drivers allowed to eat and drink while driving the train? (Like eating a sandwich or drinking cup of coffee)

Are train drivers allowed to listen to music while they are driving?

Time permitting are train drivers allowed to stop at stations that are normally express for their service if they are early and not carrying many passengers?

I've actually witnessed all 3 of these occurring from different train drivers thats why I am asking.

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  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Milko

I am not sure about rules on TA but I do know that diesels have had hot plates in the cab for a brew and fry up since the 900s and the NRs had CD players in the cabs. I guess later generation locos have even better facilities.

Ian
  Aaron The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: University of Adelaide SA
The NR cab I was in one time contained a microwave, AN/NR crews were known to order pizzas delivered to the line side.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
If you are not allowed to leave the loco or railcar unattended at some spot and you need to have a crib break at that particular place then having some hot food and drink and something to take your mind of things for a bit is a good thing. As has been said most modern loco's come with all the mod cons almost. I dont know if a suburban driver is allowed such things but I would think eating and drinking would be allowed especially in hot weather as the driver could be on that car for a good couple of hours. I don't think too many people can even get a good view of a driver in a railcar these days!

As for stopping at a platform with hardly anyone on while on an express service. Could it be that the train in front has been caught up to and your express is virtually running on the stopping train in front red light's. Some signals are at the end of platforms in places and if it is red the driver has to stop if it is an absolute signal and if it is a permissive signal he still has to stop then after a pre-determined time he can slowly pass the signal at stop. In both those signalling situations you have to stop though.

My local station at Kilkenny has a stop signal like this at the end of the platform so express or not if it shows red you stop and perform safeworking. In this one though it is a permissive signal and it can be passed at stop at slow speed after coming to a complete stop before the signal and waiting the set time. So in this case you would be stopping an express at a station platform or so it would seem anyway.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

I'd hope that a bottle of water would be permitted in the cab for suburban drivers, but not eating food. The USA's National Transport Safety Board found a few years ago that eating was more distracting for drivers on the road than even mobile phone use, and when hundreds of passengers' lives are on the line it's probably not a good idea to use Adelaide Metro as the experiment to see whether or not that transfers to suburban train drivers. Train drivers should eat at their next scheduled break - workers in almost all other occupations (except the police who "patrol" at Darlington Maccas to make sure it's the safest place in the state) seem to cope with that.

I don't know if the CD players in certain freight classes are still in place, but I recall they were fitted with a relay to mute them during any communications traffic or alerts from warning devices and for a short time after that. Having music available on a long freight trip probably helps concentration a bit, but would probably be more of a distraction in urban areas where the driver is busy every couple of minutes.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

Oh, and there used to be rumours that trains in the early morning hours of New Year's Day would stop at even the closed stations on the Belair line if people asked the driver nicely.
  witsend Chief Commissioner

Location: Front RH Seat of a School Bus
Drivers discretion. I was on a trip to Belair just to ride the express from Belair to Adelaide. The PSA checked which station I was going to, reminding me that this was an express. On one occasion I had missed the previous all stoppers, and the asked the driver of the express if he could stop at Goodwood or Mitcham. He contacted control which authorised the stop at Goodwood which allowed me a transfer to the last Noarlunga service, thus a shorter walk home from Woodlands. So long as I had a valid ticket. Don't be offended as refusal is common, but sometimes if you are polite and courteous, you may win one.
  Jumbo2001 Junior Train Controller

A few questions that have pondered my mind for awhile that I've never asked is

Are train drivers allowed to eat and drink while driving the train? (Like eating a sandwich or drinking cup of coffee)

Are train drivers allowed to listen to music while they are driving?

Time permitting are train drivers allowed to stop at stations that are normally express for their service if they are early and not carrying many passengers?

I've actually witnessed all 3 of these occurring from different train drivers thats why I am asking.
Milkomeda


I love all the replies from people who aren't drivers. Oh well, anyway, as a driver I can answer your questions:

1. Yes.
2. No. Actually a rule in the AMPRN rules that prohibits it.
3. Technically No. But I will elaborate. Any stopping outside of regular stopping patterns occurs for one of two reasons. 1 - The driver forgot that they were express in that section and stopped, 2 - Control told them to stop there. Happens often at Dry Creek to drop off/pick up Staff.

There you go Smile
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
Drivers discretion. I was on a trip to Belair just to ride the express from Belair to Adelaide. The PSA checked which station I was going to, reminding me that this was an express. On one occasion I had missed the previous all stoppers, and the asked the driver of the express if he could stop at Goodwood or Mitcham. He contacted control which authorised the stop at Goodwood which allowed me a transfer to the last Noarlunga service, thus a shorter walk home from Woodlands. So long as I had a valid ticket. Don't be offended as refusal is common, but sometimes if you are polite and courteous, you may win one.
witsend

Yes I was some where once and I knew the railcar driver and actually had lunch and a bit of a yak with him. I said jokingly to him it would be great if he could stop at my local station and save me waiting probably an hour at Adelaide with two small kids in tow. He asked me what station and I told him. Funny he heard a funny noise just before my local station and had to stop to investigate it. Well that was his excuse anyway.
  Milkomeda Chief Train Controller

I love all the replies from people who aren't drivers. Oh well, anyway, as a driver I can answer your questions:

1. Yes.
2. No. Actually a rule in the AMPRN rules that prohibits it.
3. Technically No. But I will elaborate. Any stopping outside of regular stopping patterns occurs for one of two reasons. 1 - The driver forgot that they were express in that section and stopped, 2 - Control told them to stop there. Happens often at Dry Creek to drop off/pick up Staff.

There you go Smile
Jumbo2001


Thanks
  Impulse-Rail Station Master

I am no driver either, but re question two, is this driver breaking the rules by listening to the radio?



http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zLhFJq6u1UM
  KRviator Moderator

Location: Up the front
No.

Anyway, a working CD player is required equipment in many operators go/no-go lists for departure from a terminal, and, IIRC, is part of the agreed standards for any locomotive intended for DOO workings.

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