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[103] Class 175 fire Pontrilas 15 February 2019
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[50] GWR boss out of touch with its problems, says Labour MP
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[32] Liskeard to Looe Derailment 15 Feb 19
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1  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: Liskeard to Looe Derailment 15 Feb 19 on: Yesterday at 11:34:37 am
Google street view shows the layout quite well.
D'oh. Never thought of that. Thank you.
Note to chastise myself (in private of course).
2  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: Liskeard to Looe Derailment 15 Feb 19 on: Yesterday at 08:07:46 am
Does anyone have a track layout for, I guess, the station area? Something to show where/which points this happened.  Just curious.
Thank you
3  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: Liskeard to Looe Derailment 15 Feb 19 on: Yesterday at 07:32:58 am
PhilWakely has also posted in a more appropriate sections. May the Mods please move this one across, or remove post.

With thanks
4  Journey by Journey / London to the West / Re: Dawlish solution - add 2.5m to the sea wall on: Yesterday at 07:09:29 am

Usual adverts within article, (apologies)

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling will today announce an £80m investment to raise the Dawlish seawall by more than 8ft (2.5m) to protect the vulnerable stretch of railway line between London and Devon and Cornwall.

Mr Grayling - who is due to visit the region to unveil his plans - says work begins in the Spring and will “create a robust set of defences to help protect the railway and the local homes behind it”.

As well as raising the height of the wall, special engineering techniques will be used to create curves designed to prevent the sea breaking over the railway line.

Five years ago this month storms broke through the current sea defences, leaving the track suspended above the waves. The region west of Exeter had no through trains for six weeks.

Artist impression of what the new Dawlish sea wall could look like
Artist impression of what the new Dawlish sea wall could look like (Image: Network Rail)
Services continue to be regularly disrupted when high tides and strong winds combine.

The Transport Secretary says the £80m investment will help ensure there is no repeat of the crisis.

In total, however, Network Rail says more than £300m will be needed to make the line fully robust against future storms, including protection for the crumbling cliffs west of Dawlish.

The shocking full story of the Dawlish rail disaster told by the first policemen on the scene
Mr Grayling says the investment at Dawlish is part of £5.7billion the Government is spending modernising the Great Western Railway  - although much of the funding is going on electrification of the line between London, Bristol and South Wales.

A report – Investing in the South West – is also being published by the Department for Transport today detailing a £2bn spending programme to improve the A30 and A303 roads, create faster bus connections and build new long-distance cycle paths. 

“These ambitious plans underline this government’s cast iron commitment to the South West,” says Mr Grayling.

How the Dawlish sea wall disaster evolved on February 4 and 5
Tuesday February 4 - The storms raged all day

This Met Office map shows the worst gusts of the winter hit the South West that day - and it was worse in South Devon than anywhere else in mainland Britain. Gusts of 79mph were recorded at Berry Head. Only the Scilly Isles, far out into the Atlantic Ocean, recorded slightly worse winds at 80mph. Residents on Dawlish seafront said waves were already hitting their windows TWO HOURS BEFORE high tide.

7.30pm Two hours before high tide

Residents began to realise conditions were bad when, two hours before high tide, seawater was already hitting their windows.

9.20pm Marine Parade flooded

At the other end of the seafront, two people had to be rescued when their vehicle became trapped in floodwater in Marine Parade, at about 21:20pm on the Tuesday night, February 4.

9.30-10pm The sea wall began to collapse and electric lights went out.

One terrified resident at Riviera Terrace looked out into the dark just after 9.30pm and said: "I looked out and the sea wall had gone."

10pm Residents began to ring the emergency services

The people living in Riviera Terrace and the adjoining Sea Lawn Terrace began to fear for their lives as they looked out of their windows in the dark to see that the sea wall, railway track and road began to disappear. The raging sea was within feet of their front doors.



10pm to 10.30 Emergency services arrived

Residents report there was some confusion on the night as emergency services dealt with flooding and people trapped in cars at Marine Parade. When the reports of the line collapsing first came in the emergency services went to the railway station. When 999 services realised the problem was further along the line at Sea Lawn Terrace they realised the severity of the situation and began knocking on doors in the area and in Exeter Road above warning people that they might have to move out of their homes.

10.45pm Decision to evacuate daken and major incident declared

About 50 people - 26 families in all - were given just five minutes to leave, with just the clothes they stood up in, coats and blankets to wrap around sleeping children.

11.30pm The Sea Lawn Lodge guest house was asked by police to help

Val and Gerald Belcher have since  been honoured for the way they took care of people at their guesthouse on the night of the storm in the hours before the emergency planning team kicked into gear. Families with small children were given beds for the night.

3am Dawlish Leisure Centre was opened

Teignbridge District Council's emergency planning team kicked into gear and by 3am they had the Dawlish Leisure Centre open and families slept on mats on the floor overnight.

7am First light - the full scale of the disaster hit national headlines

This was the scene on Wednesday morning as people began to realise the enormity of what had happened - not just for those people living in Dawlish but for the whole of the South West peninsula's transport network and the local economy.

Dawlish Railway: Five Years On
Brunel’s atmospheric railway along the coast opened between Exeter and Teignmouth and extended to Newton Abbot in January, 1848

The century-old seawall at Dawlish was destroyed by crashing waves, which scooped out hundreds of tonnes of ballast, forcing the evacuation of families from Riviera Terrace and Sea Lawn

Transport Minister Patrick McLoughlin visits Dawlish to inspect the damage

MARCH 2014
Specialist fire crews set off a controlled landslide above the Dawlish to Teignmouth rail track where workmen battled to reopen the line

APRIL 2014
Line reopens with VIP guests including Prime Minister David Cameron

July 2014
Orange Army commended with special award for their repair work

JULY 2014
Network Rail report released. The Government effectively committed itself to spending at least £400million to ensure there is never a repeat of the main Devon and Cornwall railway line collapsing at Dawlish

Chancellor George Osborne criticised for his silence on the rail line in his Autumn Statement

MARCH 2016
George Osborne pledged £5 million in the first stage of improvements to the resilience of the line in Budget

Network Rail awarded £10 million contract to investigate the coastal cliff frontage in Dawlish to Teignmouth section

Network Rail begins public information events on its investigations and resilience plans

Peninsula Rail Task Force submits Closing The Gap, its 20-year plan for the region’s railway, to the government

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn promises, if the party wins power, to find £600million for rail resilience work at Dawlish while having an all weather bypass route in the future

Transport minister Jesse Norman says that reopening a railway line avoiding the coast, via Okehampton and Tavistock is a ‘very important potential idea’. It would be in addition to the Dawlish line, he said while visiting Exeter St Davids

Peninsula Rail Task Force demands answers after still receiving no Government response to its Closing The Gap report

South West Devon MP Gary Streeter said he expects the government to announce that around £200million will be spent on the line in the next 2-3 years

Transport secretary Chris Grayling states that Dawlish is ‘number one national transport priority’ and promises a response to Closing The Gap by the end of February

Network Rail outlines its five-year plan for ongoing maintenance for the region's network in Control Period 6

Minister of State for Transport Jo Johnson responds to the PRTF Closing the Gap report but offers no 'miracle cure' for Dawlish

MARCH 2018
Homes in Dawlish evacuated, part of the rail line damaged and seaside cafe washed away during Storm Emma

MARCH 2018
Transport minister renews pledge to do 'whatever it takes' to safeguard Dawlish rail line as councillors hear it is the only economically viable route

APRIL 2018
Trains continue to be cancelled as high tides cause problems on the vulnerable main line along the sea wall at Dawlish. The cancellations cover Cross Country services.

Sir John Armitt, chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission warns the The South West must thrash out a time frame to future-proof the Dawlish railway line.

The former chief of Network Rail said the region must come together to address the long running rail issue once and for all.

Crosscountry trains through Dawlish are cancelled as Storm Callum batters the region and days later a six-foot sinkhole under the line close to Teignmouth is discovered, closing the mainline

Government told to 'get a grip' after high seas close the line to trains again

Work gets under way to improve four breakwaters at Boat Cove, Coastguards Point, Colonnade Underpass and Langstone Rock over the next six months.

Investigations by Network Rail also continue into whether loose material from the clifftop above Parsons Tunnel at Holcombe can be removed to stabilise the cliff and reduce the risk of landslips.

The Government has provided £15m for Network Rail to design a long-lasting solution to this problem.

Network Rail reveals long term plans for the rail line. The re-routing of the Dawlish rail line closer to the sea will not see a popular beach lost to the public, it insists.

The causeway option would see the line rebuild from the tunnel at Smugglers’ Lane in Holcombe, out on to the beach past Spray Point, and then would curve back in land towards Teignmouth.

The option could cost up to £500million but no funding has yet been pledged for the work or a timeframe put in place.

More services are cancelled through Dawlish

Meetings are held between the Peninsula Rail Task Force, South West MPs, Rail Minister and the Secretary of State over the future of the rail line.

The fifth anniversary of the Dawlish Rail line disaster is on February 4.
5  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Liskeard to Looe Derailment 15 Feb 19 on: Yesterday at 07:03:00 am
Now it's the turn of another Cornish branch

Alterations to services between Liskeard and Looe
Due to a low speed derailment between Liskeard and Looe all lines are closed.
Train services running to and from these stations have been suspended. Disruption is expected until the end of the day.
Further Information
An update will follow within the next 2 hours.
Last Updated:15/02/2019 06:48
6  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: 13.4.2019 - Longrock depot open day on: February 14, 2019, 10:40:24 am
Sadly, I shall be away on that date, and too far to call by.
Likewise unfortunately

See you in Kuala Lumpur!

Wrong continent for us
7  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: 13.4.2019 - Longrock depot open day on: February 12, 2019, 05:44:16 pm
Sadly, I shall be away on that date, and too far to call by.
Likewise unfortunately
8  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Why are First Enviro 400s freezers on wheels ? on: February 10, 2019, 05:07:05 pm
The 400MMC buses Reading have need to have the ignition switched on about two minutes before the engine has started to reset all the electronics, including the heating. A common problem was taking over one of these vehicles where the heating wasn't working because the previous driver hadn't reset the bus bus first thing in the morning. This would then require delay where you had to switch everything off including the master switch and then switch it all back on allowing time for the electronics to reset. This could cause about 4/5 minutes delay which, with the tight running times R.B have, could mean running late for the rest of your shift. Cold bus on time or warm bus late was the choice. It's worth noting that this reset always worked.
Don't know about the heating. FK new vehciles seems to auto start with the heating on auto at the outset.
However, anything to do with a master reset (switch off everything and wait..) will involve many minutes delay which will add to your already late running as there is NO spare in runs.  You might be lucky to have perhaps a 10 minute turn around at one end of your run, but if you arrive 10 minutes late, there is no layover.
9  All across the Great Western territory / Fare's Fair / Re: SWR strikes on: February 10, 2019, 05:00:20 pm
From the RMT website
7 February 2019

RMT Press Office:

RMT secures renewed mandate for action in ballot on South Western Railway and announces fresh strike dates.

RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that it has secured yet another rock-solid vote to continue with action in the rail safety dispute on South Western Railway after being forced to renew the mandate under the terms of the latest wave of Tory anti-union laws.

Accordingly the union’s executive has announced a further round of strike action.

Members have voted by an overwhelming 88% to continue with the current action in defence of safety, security and access on SWR despite the legal hurdles erected by the Tories. This is the fourth time that the union has been forced to ballot with the company stringing out the process every six months in the hope that their constant undermining of their own safety-critical workforce will impact on union members morale. Once again their cynical strategy has failed and RMT says that it is time for SWR to stop playing games and to start getting serious in genuine and meaningful talks.

RMT members on South Western Railway working as a Railway Guard, Commercial Guard or Train Driver are instructed to not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-

• 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Friday 22nd February 2019.

• 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 9th March 2019.

• 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 16th March 2019.

The ballot result comes a day after RMT secured a guard guarantee in the long running dispute on Northern Rail allowing the union to suspend on-going strike action - piling more pressure on SWR to stop stalling and start talking seriously around safe and accessible services with all trains running with a guard on board.

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:

“RMT has been forced under the latest wave of Tory anti-union laws to ballot for a fourth time in the rail safety dispute on South Western Railway under the six month rule and once again our members have stood united and solid and have renewed the mandate to carry on the fight to put public safety before private profit.

“It is a disgrace that South Western Railway have yet again opted to play for time over the past six months rather than acting responsibly and getting round the table with the union to work out a solution to this dispute that puts safety and the guard guarantee centre stage. That is the package we have successfully negotiated in both Wales and Scotland and on a number of English franchises. It defies belief that we are being denied the same positive outcome on the South Western Railway routes.

“This ballot result comes just a day after RMT secured a guard guarantee in the long running dispute on Northern Rail allowing the union to suspend on-going strike action - piling yet more pressure on SWR to stop stalling and start talking seriously around safe and accessible services with all trains running with a guard on board. ‎There is no excuse for them to stall that process any longer.“
10  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Buses - dirty-feeling engines ticking over. on: February 10, 2019, 04:44:21 pm
Having recently driven brand new diesel buses with stop/start fitted for Reading Buses, I can confirm that the driver has no ability to override the feature. The stop/start would only occur with the doors open and doesn't work at the times when you want it to, a minute or two wait at a timing point for example. When it did occur it had the effect of unsettling the passengers who would come to the front to ask how long you would be waiting. You can of course still shut the engine of yourself while waiting, but the older the vehicle the less chance it may start again which may explain drivers leaving vehicles running.
Totally agree with that RG. However, it is possible on our new vehicles (& probably yours) the driver CAN manually override the start/stop with the doors open.  However, as this overrides a safety feature, it's best I don't how explain how... Many of our drivers know this.  Slightly speeds up the time stopped.
Yes, older vehicles you switch off in traffic at your peril, despite perhaps a very long stop.  Even with new vehicles it's best not to switch off in traffic just in case.
It's easy for an outsider to say "Come on driver, it's a new bus, it's bound to restart instantly".
Yeah, right. (Only been driving for 9 years, so what do I know)
11  Sideshoots - associated subjects / News, Help and Assistance / Re: Papers prepared for the Coffee Shop / Planning and Constitution meeting 9.2.19 on: February 10, 2019, 09:41:02 am
A great day out.
Again, as said, lovely to meet members in real life.
My first trip in an IET, and to experience door issues with the return run, so a later arrival home.
Left at 5am, home by 9pm.
Well worth the day out; thank you one and all
12  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Buses - dirty-feeling engines ticking over. on: February 08, 2019, 01:11:25 pm
The stop start also only works if certain criteria are met in the bus operating conditions. I don’t know how to override it, but they often restart before I shut the doors.
Engine stop when doors open is a safety feature of course. Like many safety items, it can be manually over-ridden by the driver at any stop. This is, of course, against First requirements!
13  All across the Great Western territory / Buses and other ways to travel / Re: Buses - dirty-feeling engines ticking over. on: February 08, 2019, 06:52:56 am
Most of First Kernow's fleet now have stop/start which is a improvement. They are physical dirty but I think you have to expect that at this time of year considering some of the lanes they go down...
Start/stop only works when the doors are opened. Even that can be manually overridden if the driver wishes.
If the driver stops in a bus stop to wait time (or when stuck in traffic), the engine will continue to run.
All FK vehicles now have Adblue additive so the days of thick black smoke are considerably reduced; more like thinner light grey exhaust.
As OO says, the backs will always be in a dreadful state.  Camborne has a bus wash; Truro has a manual hose pressure washer.
Overnight cleaner(s) at other depots do not have enough time to clean the vehicles properly as they come off the road, let alone wash them as well.
14  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: Penzance local services - May 2019 on: February 05, 2019, 11:33:44 am

December 2018
There was a concentrated effort to complete as much of the tank works as possible before the Christmas break.  Backfilling around the structure was completed before the shutdown, manholes installed and a first layer of protection laid on top of it (see photo below).  Further basecourse surfacing and car parking plots were laid in the south car park.

Image showing the first layer of protection laid

There were no traffic or safety incidents reported during the Christmas and New Year site closure.

November 2018
November has seen a lot of work done on the drainage system for the north car park and adjoining area.  The tank to manage the outflow of water has almost been completed.  Despite the inclement weather, sheet piles have been installed (see below, top left photo), the ground excavated and a reinforced concrete base laid (right), and almost all of the pre-cast tank units installed (bottom left).  The final few units will be installed in early December.

There has also been continued work on other areas around the north car park, the south car park and to entrances and footways along the A30.

A30 Completion delayed - Following extensive challenge and discussion it has been agreed between Cornwall Council, Highways England and Wills Brothers that it would not be safe to commission the new A30 signals until the permanent car park entrance has been constructed.  This has the impact of postponing the completion of A30 works until 3 March 2019.  The Council instructed changes to the drainage (including the large tank) which will be beneath the access road leading to the level crossing and north car park entrance.  The current temporary car park entrance would exit within the signalised junction area, adjacent the station access, and is not considered to be safe to operate in that situation as it could cause traffic to queue back onto the A30.

All site works are expected to be completed in the first week of April 2019 with the south car park opening, after safety audit and handover to GWR, to operate from mid May 2019 to coincide with the new two trains per hour main line train service and the completed St Ives Bay platform works.

15  Journey by Journey / Plymouth and Cornwall / Re: Derailment at Penryn 28 January 2019 on: February 03, 2019, 09:29:14 am
Been on a reccy as hourly service continues .... Photos taken at around 5.30pm tonight.

Lovely shots RC. Thank you for them  Grin
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