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Author Topic: Tram overturns in Croydon - 7 killed, 51 injured - 9 Nov 2016  (Read 11766 times)
ChrisB
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« Reply #105 on: March 15, 2017, 09:13:20 AM »

The DLR seems to manage....
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chrisr_75
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« Reply #106 on: March 15, 2017, 09:33:22 AM »

The DLR seems to manage....

Exactly. Strikes me as a clear situation where some technology or other could have completely prevented this incident. It's not like we're dealing with an antiquated system either.

London Underground has had speed controlled signals (with tripcocks) on manually driven lines for a long, long time. Tesla cars also mostly manage not to crash - the only incidents I'm aware of involving a 'driverless' car would've been stopped by it being on rails! Time to remove control from humans if they cannot be trusted to follow simple instructions (this wasn't the first overspeed incident on this tram system was it?).
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Adelante_CCT
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« Reply #107 on: March 15, 2017, 09:53:29 AM »

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I'm surprised no one has mentioned 'driverless' trams -

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The DLR seems to manage....

Yes, but, the DLR has no level crossings to entertain (other than just the one I believe, at Beckton Depot whereby the road only has access to the depot so not a major thoroughfare), Croydon has numerous level crossings and spaces whereby people walk across the track, East Croydon station for one. All it takes is for one broken down car or one fallen over old lady and its not worth thinking about, a computer wont notice these things, a driver on the other hand will do.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #108 on: March 15, 2017, 09:56:54 AM »

I think that's why 'driverless' was in quotes?

Similar to the DLR, a member of staff could pilot it through the street running, where speed limits are necessarily slow, in order that they can stop easily. Leaving the computer to drive in the 'country' lengths.
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chrisr_75
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« Reply #109 on: March 15, 2017, 10:40:36 AM »

Quote
I'm surprised no one has mentioned 'driverless' trams -

Quote
The DLR seems to manage....

Yes, but, the DLR has no level crossings to entertain (other than just the one I believe, at Beckton Depot whereby the road only has access to the depot so not a major thoroughfare), Croydon has numerous level crossings and spaces whereby people walk across the track, East Croydon station for one. All it takes is for one broken down car or one fallen over old lady and its not worth thinking about, a computer wont notice these things, a driver on the other hand will do.

I recently saw a dashcam video from inside a Tesla which correctly predicted (you hear the warning tone before anything visible happens, quite spooky) a car spinning and overturning on a motorway directly infront. The Tesla managed to stop itself quickly enough to avoid any further collisions with debris or the crashed car. A computer can avoid unexpected collisions/obstructions given the right sensory inputs and algorithms and will likely respond quicker and more effectively than any human controller.

ChrisB - yes, that was indeed why I put driverless in quotation marks to infer a system such as what we see currently on several tube lines, but in my opinion having that human being there is frankly overkill with how technology has come along in the last few years.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #110 on: April 24, 2017, 10:08:56 AM »

From the BBC

Quote
Croydon tram crash: Drivers 'fell asleep' on fatal line

Four drivers have admitted falling asleep while operating trams in Croydon, where seven people were killed after a tram derailed in November 2016.

Drivers said a safety device, known as "a dead man's handle", failed to activate and stop their trams.

Tram Operations Ltd, which runs the line, said driver fatigue was monitored and controls were "fully functional".

An interim report into November's crash suggested the tram was speeding and the driver may have "lost awareness".

It found there was no emergency braking and the tram had been travelling at 46mph before it crashed in a 13mph zone, near the Sandilands Junction area of Croydon.

However, a BBC investigation for the Victoria Derbyshire programme, has found that at least three trams have been recorded speeding on that same line since the derailment.

One was travelling at 40mph in a 25mph zone. Another is understood to have been speeding near the crash site.

'Very fortunate'

Four current and former drivers have also admitted they have fallen asleep while driving a tram.

Konrad Turner, who retired last year after driving trams in Croydon for 16 years, said he woke up 10 metres after passing the line's George Street stop, adding: "A person was very fortunate that I didn't run them over."

Mr Turner said his tram's driver safety device - which is used on different types of tram across the UK and Europe - failed to work.

Drivers have to apply 1.5lb of pressure on a lever and push it forward for the tram to accelerate.

If pressure is not maintained, a safety device inside the lever should activate - sounding an alarm and then applying an emergency brake.

There is no suggestion a problem with this device was responsible for the derailment at Sandilands.

Cost their jobs

Guidance from the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) safety regulator says the driver safety device should activate "in the event of driver collapse".

Further guidance also states the device should be designed "so that it cannot be kept in the operating position other than by a vigilant tram driver".

But six drivers said the device was not "fit for purpose".

One said drivers were afraid to tell management about safety device failures because they feared being sacked over falling asleep.

"You're asking somebody to come forward and admit to something that could cost them their job," he said, adding that he believed most drivers had fallen asleep at some point in the career.
The BBC has uncovered three incidents in the past decade where drivers were incapacitated.

They include a near head-on collision, a collision with buffers, and a driver failing to slow down at the line's Morden Road stop.

On that occasion, the driver was only woken when he was spotted by ticket inspectors on the platform, who radioed his cab.

In November, footage released by the Sun showed a driver who appeared to be asleep for at least 30 seconds continuing to power a tram on the line.

Transport for London told the BBC the driver safety device failed to work because the driver had not completely lost consciousness.

"If he were to completely pass out and lose consciousness then he would relax his grip," director Leon Daniels said when shown the footage.
Another driver told the BBC of a dead man's handle failure in May 2016.

He said a spring in the device had broken, causing the alarm and emergency braking to be initially delayed, before failing altogether.

The driver told the BBC he reported it immediately. He said he was told it was safe to continue.

"[I said] if I have a heart attack or become unconscious this tram will go through the buffers at Beckenham junction at 50mph and kill more than likely myself, the majority of people on board and around the tram.

"Only when I said that [did they say], 'Take it out of service straightaway.'"

In a statement, Tram Operations Ltd, said there was not "a full failure" of the driver's safety device and passengers "were not at risk".

'Operating safely'

It says the tram was later "examined" and the fault was rectified the next day.

Transport for London said the "tram was still operating safely".

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) safety regulator said it was not made aware of the incident, but a "failure should be reported".

When questioned on allegations of trams exceeding speed limits in Croydon, Tram Operations said it had increased speed checks across the tram network since the crash.
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #111 on: April 24, 2017, 12:24:23 PM »

1.5lb of pressure doesn't sound very much. Is it possible that a sleeping driver with their hand on the lever would prevent the deadman's handle activating, without it actually being faulty? I know someone who was involved in a near head-on crash with a car driver who had fallen asleep and whose sleeping foot was exerting enough pressure on the accelerator pedal for the car to carry on at about 40mph uphill, so such things do happen.
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chrisr_75
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« Reply #112 on: April 24, 2017, 12:36:02 PM »

1.5lb of pressure doesn't sound very much. Is it possible that a sleeping driver with their hand on the lever would prevent the deadman's handle activating, without it actually being faulty? I know someone who was involved in a near head-on crash with a car driver who had fallen asleep and whose sleeping foot was exerting enough pressure on the accelerator pedal for the car to carry on at about 40mph uphill, so such things do happen.

I was surprised about the pressure required. I'm quite certain my arm (and I'm far from being heavily built) weighs somewhat in excess of 1.5lb...unless of course there is some mis-quoting/-understanding going on in terms of units or something, that wouldn't surprise me in the least.
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richwarwicker
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« Reply #113 on: April 24, 2017, 06:27:29 PM »

Quote
I'm surprised no one has mentioned 'driverless' trams -

Quote
The DLR seems to manage....

Yes, but, the DLR has no level crossings to entertain (other than just the one I believe, at Beckton Depot whereby the road only has access to the depot so not a major thoroughfare), Croydon has numerous level crossings and spaces whereby people walk across the track, East Croydon station for one. All it takes is for one broken down car or one fallen over old lady and its not worth thinking about, a computer wont notice these things, a driver on the other hand will do.

I recently saw a dashcam video from inside a Tesla which correctly predicted (you hear the warning tone before anything visible happens, quite spooky) a car spinning and overturning on a motorway directly infront. The Tesla managed to stop itself quickly enough to avoid any further collisions with debris or the crashed car. A computer can avoid unexpected collisions/obstructions given the right sensory inputs and algorithms and will likely respond quicker and more effectively than any human controller.

ChrisB - yes, that was indeed why I put driverless in quotation marks to infer a system such as what we see currently on several tube lines, but in my opinion having that human being there is frankly overkill with how technology has come along in the last few years.

My Zafira has an automated collision avoidance system. A car stopped suddenly in front of me and it reacted quicker than I did. The problem with the system - I live down a narrow lane, with hedge growing across the road and it brakes to the hedge getting close as well,
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ChrisB
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« Reply #114 on: April 24, 2017, 07:02:44 PM »

So overtaking is a no-no on a crowded motorway for yours, then? How often do you find it reacts wrongly?
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basset44
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« Reply #115 on: May 19, 2017, 02:15:35 PM »

Hi All,

It just dose not get any better!

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/transport/shocking-footage-emerges-of-croydon-tram-driver-asleep-at-controls-a3542661.html

Basset
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #116 on: May 19, 2017, 08:38:07 PM »


Scarcely believable and incredibly worrying  - is "ability to stay awake at work" not part of First Groups recruitment process?
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ellendune
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« Reply #117 on: May 19, 2017, 10:09:42 PM »

Scarcely believable and incredibly worrying  - is "ability to stay awake at work" not part of First Groups recruitment process?

Or are the shift patterns of a nature that means that staff do not get adequate sleep, as some have alleged.

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GBM
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« Reply #118 on: May 20, 2017, 05:54:25 AM »

Scarcely believable and incredibly worrying  - is "ability to stay awake at work" not part of First Groups recruitment process?

Or are the shift patterns of a nature that means that staff do not get adequate sleep, as some have alleged.


Certainly in the bus world, the shifts are horrible.  Half to two thirds of new entrants leave not being able to take the relentless pace of them and that goes with the lack of family time.  Further years progression ease up the pace (but that takes quite a while).
Very long discussions to be had on that issue alone.
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Personal opinion only.  Writings not representative of any union, collective, management or employer. (Think that absolves me...........)
TaplowGreen
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« Reply #119 on: May 20, 2017, 03:35:07 PM »

Scarcely believable and incredibly worrying  - is "ability to stay awake at work" not part of First Groups recruitment process?

Or are the shift patterns of a nature that means that staff do not get adequate sleep, as some have alleged.



If that's the case, maybe it'd be a worthwhile issue for the Trade Unions to take up.....I'm surprised they haven't already?
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