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Old January 16th, 2016, 09:25 AM   #2901
AlexNL
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A train can be badly damaged even if you can't see it. For example, the electric connections on/in the coupler could have been damaged in such a way that this ICE no longer can be coupled to another set. That is pretty bad from an operational point of view.
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Old January 31st, 2016, 04:31 PM   #2902
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Here is yet another farewell tour with the CityNightLine train.
Deutsche Bahn has putting some rumours out that the Zurich - Berlin sleeper train could be chopped as early as June 2016. Of Course, Swiss Railway SBB is not going to be interested in taking over running the service.
I purchased a sleeper surcharge for a Double cabin for EUR 60.



























Video of the journey:





If the video does not load correctly here is the direct link to the video:

http://youtu.be/AcT0PgSTVZE



Enjoy!
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Old February 9th, 2016, 10:46 AM   #2903
Baron Hirsch
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Major Train Accident in Bavaria

Initial reports claim 8 dead and over 100 wounded as two EMUs operated by BOB/Meridian crashed head-on on a single track line near Rosenheim. There is no information yet as to why signaling failed to prevent both trains from operating on the line at the same time. http://www.focus.de/regional/muenche...d_5270469.html
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Old February 9th, 2016, 02:00 PM   #2904
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The death toll has risen to 9 at this moment.

Even though German signalling in general is pretty well designed it has a few major downsides:
  1. PZB is only partly fail safe. Most failures will result in a brake penalty, but a missing/failed magnet isn't detected at all.
  2. PZB is a point based system. You can't influence trains between these points. Especially on single track sections the distance between these point can be very long.
  3. A driver can pass a signal at danger just by pulling a lever. The procedure assumes drivers will only do that when instructed to because there is no technical protection from misuse.
  4. The interlocking allows the signaller to override the system without any safety checks by the interlocking
One thing that could happen with the PZB system (and I am not claiming nor speculating that this has happened at Bad Aibling!): When a train approaching a red signal has passed both a 1000 Hz and 500 Hz 'magnet' and is slowed down to below 10 km/h for a short period of time, the PZB system will go into restricted mode, limiting it to 25 km/h. If the driver then fails to observe the red signal while restarting (distracted by someone or something) and passes the still red signal, the train gets a brake penalty when passing the signal. Because modern trains are quick, the driver however thinks he was stopped because he exceeded 25 km/h (you can't tell the difference from the indicator panel), confirms the brake penalty and continues on.
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Old February 9th, 2016, 02:13 PM   #2905
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Reports in English.

http://news.sky.com/story/1638493/at...rain-collision
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-35530538
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Old February 10th, 2016, 08:42 AM   #2906
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The (final?) death toll has risen to 10.

First investigation by the authorities indicates that it was the signaller that made an error (see bullet 4. in my previous post!).
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Last edited by M-NL; February 10th, 2016 at 01:20 PM. Reason: Reports of a 11th casualty have been refuted
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Old February 10th, 2016, 01:54 PM   #2907
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Yes. If leaks from the investigation to the press are correct, the signaler intended to let one of the two EMUs, which was running late, through and let it head to a double-track section to wait for the approaching train to pass. However, the EMU did not manage to reach that spot in time, as the second train had progressed further than assumed.
http://www.rnd-news.de/Exklusive-New...m-Versagen-aus
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Old February 10th, 2016, 04:35 PM   #2908
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What kind of interlocking allows such operation? It must be a not fail-safe device, or he must have operated unlocking several safety controls.
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Last edited by Wilhem275; February 10th, 2016 at 05:22 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old February 10th, 2016, 04:45 PM   #2909
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The latter. PZB is what it is called in German (see above).
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Old February 10th, 2016, 04:53 PM   #2910
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I could try to explain it here myself, but linking to Wikipedia is probably easier:
Interlocking
PZB
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Old February 10th, 2016, 05:22 PM   #2911
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This is why positive train control, in some way or other, should be compulsory EU-wide for all passenger operations!
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Old February 10th, 2016, 08:15 PM   #2912
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PZB is not an interlocking system, it's a train protection system. PZB simply prevents trains from passing a signal at danger, while the interlocking system (IXL) ensures that no conflicting routes can be set.

The interlocking ensures that a route from A to B can only be set if the route is guaranteed to be safe, i.e. no conflicting moves are planned. This influences the signalling system: signals will show red aspects when another train is (planned to) use the route.

When a train approaches a signal at danger, the PZB system enforces a braking curve on the train, ensuring that it will not pass the signal (a "SPAD") and enters into the path of a different train. As with each system, it is possible to override the system in case of faults.

On his control panel, the signaller has some buttons to authorise a driver to wilfully pass a signal at danger. When the signaller operates this override, a white light illuminates next to the signal at danger, telling the driver that he can proceed at low speed. This is called an "Ersatzsignal" (or Zs1), and it more or less replaces phone calls or written forms from the signaller.

When passing the signal at danger, the driver also has to push a button to tell the PZB system "Yes, I know that I am passing a signal at danger, but I intend to do so." As the signaller basically says to the IXL "You are wrong, I know that the track is safe", procedures must be followed when operating the Zs1. The signaller must check that no conflicting routes are planned, and so on.

What has happened in Bavaria is a mystery. Judging by the rumours, it looks like the signaller (or: one of the signallers*) made a mistake and did not properly ensure that the section ahead was clear.

* Germany still has a lot of old-fashioned control boxes that control a small area
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Old February 10th, 2016, 08:28 PM   #2913
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From what I read, the Bad Aibling interlocking also controls the nearby station(s), so it should be a decently modern device (well, no actual guarantee of this).

I'm also hearing that today Police is firmly denying the hypothesis of a signaller's mistake, after the many rumors by the press.
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Old February 10th, 2016, 08:34 PM   #2914
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Is it only my impression that Germany has had more serious train accidents during the last 30 years than any of the other big West European countries?
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Old February 10th, 2016, 08:53 PM   #2915
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I'm not sure. UK had some serious disasters in the 1990s. Highest death toll I believe to be in Spain, if you include terrorist attacks
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Old February 10th, 2016, 09:08 PM   #2916
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
I'm not sure. UK had some serious disasters in the 1990s. Highest death toll I believe to be in Spain, if you include terrorist attacks
I'm not sure either, however including terrorist attacks would be unfair. It wouldn't say anything about inherent safety cultures of railways themselves.
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Old February 10th, 2016, 09:16 PM   #2917
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The Eschede accident (an ICE derailing at 200 kmh and some coaches hitting a pillar) with 100 dead is to my knowledge the worst accident in Europe for quite some time. It was caused because the wheels of ICE 1 had been making excessive noise, an insulation was used on them that had only been used on S-Bahns before, but that insulation then caused tears on the wheels and inspections just by the naked eye (rather than infrared) failed to spot the tears in time. A whole chain of neglect parred with a really bad spot for derailing.
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Old February 11th, 2016, 08:57 AM   #2918
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
This is why positive train control, in some way or other, should be compulsory EU-wide for all passenger operations!
That's already in the works. ERTMS works on the basis of 'movement authorities'. Except for the short period of time and distance after a cold start when a train doesn't exactly know where it is yet (which is called 'staff responsible'), a train can only be moved when authorised to so.
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Old February 12th, 2016, 01:34 PM   #2919
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So who is to blame? Negligence of staff? Or equipment failure?
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Old February 12th, 2016, 01:35 PM   #2920
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Too soon to get an accurate answer
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Well, sir, there's nothing on earth like a genuine, bona fide, electrified, six-car monorail!

Marchionne means never having to say you're sorry.

Due to Photobucket f*cking up, most images won't be visibile in my old posts. If you need anything specific, please write me.
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