WOLO's or Extreme Heat operation

 
  historian Deputy Commissioner

One way to limit creep is to use anchors which clip around the rail between the sleepers.
Not sure what happens with concrete sleepers.

The Pandrol clips hold the rails tightly enough that separate anchors aren't necessary. One of the many advantages of Pandrol clips.
The all-Pandrol RRL lines have regular creep markers. Is this standard?
potatoinmymouth

You'll notice that I didn't say the rails didn't creep; just that the Pandrol clips hold the rails tightly enough that separate anchors aren't necessary.

All rails creep. The main cause of the creep is the forces exerted by the wheels when the loco is powering or the train is braking. Sometimes it's the phase of the moon. The vibration and wave motion as a train passes over the track assists creep by weakening the friction between the track components. Sometimes the rails creep on their own, sometimes they take the sleepers with them. In CWR the effect of creep is to change the local stress in the rail. The creep monitors allow the track inspections to monitor track creep over the length of the line over time.

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  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Extreme HEAT blast this week to start off Summer 2019-20, commencing with the Bendigo line from Tuesday... all lines later this week.

https://www.weatherzone.com.au/vic/northern-country/bendigo

Bendigo's 45c forecast for Friday is 2c ABOVE its hottest ever December day...and we still have climate change/global warming deniers in Canberra Exclamation

Mike. (stepping down off soapbox)
  Carnot Minister for Railways

Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.
  Crossover Train Controller

Location: St. Albans Victoria
Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.
Carnot
  Crossover Train Controller

Location: St. Albans Victoria
Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.

Crossover
Dare I ask what happens in countries such as the USA that operate class 1 railways in hot climate zones in these conditions ?
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.
Crossover
Jereon Weimar from PTV was on 774 with Virginia Trioli earlier this week .

Old codger from Gippsland rang up re welded rails compared to old jointed rails and asked where does the expansion go if no joints .  Jeroen waffled on and made the statement something like we run so many trains these days that they caused the rails to heat up and then risk of buckling so trains ran slower as a safety measure.

Rails would actually expand traditionally across the width, in height and lengthwise. The public remembers jointed track with gaps and therefore thinks that rails only expand longitudinally on hot days.

With CWR  the idea is to control how the rail expands .  So height wise one would not think an issue, width wise not generally an issue till risk the gauge is too loose or too tight. Longitudinally the idea is to control the expansion by tieing the track down hard with specific pandrol clips and spring fasteners, and with concrete sleepers and well packed ballast.

The old codger was not convinced and preferred the good old days with jointed rails and no WOLOS.  In that rsepect he was right for yonks we ran at 115kmh on jointed 94lb rail all year round - 15C to  40 + C and we seem to still be here.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.
Jereon Weimar from PTV was on 774 with Virginia Trioli earlier this week .

Old codger from Gippsland rang up re welded rails compared to old jointed rails and asked where does the expansion go if no joints .  Jeroen waffled on and made the statement something like we run so many trains these days that they caused the rails to heat up and then risk of buckling so trains ran slower as a safety measure.

Rails would actually expand traditionally across the width, in height and lengthwise. The public remembers jointed track with gaps and therefore thinks that rails only expand longitudinally on hot days.

With CWR  the idea is to control how the rail expands .  So height wise one would not think an issue, width wise not generally an issue till risk the gauge is too loose or too tight. Longitudinally the idea is to control the expansion by tieing the track down hard with specific pandrol clips and spring fasteners, and with concrete sleepers and well packed ballast.

The old codger was not convinced and preferred the good old days with jointed rails and no WOLOS.  In that rsepect he was right for yonks we ran at 115kmh on jointed 94lb rail all year round - 15C to  40 + C and we seem to still be here.
kuldalai
Weimar, PTV, the government, along with Vline and Metro simply treat the public both as complete ignoramuses and with contempt. Sadly the incompetent opposition (who ?) let them get away with every time.
  C2 Junior Train Controller

The process of taking legal action, we are run by lawyers , what's your insurance value on Vline.
  Carnot Minister for Railways

Without a doubt Shepparton V/line customers were treated with contempt yesterday:
  Contrillion Junior Train Controller

Location: Geelong, Victoria
It appears V/Line have introduced the concept of 'partial extreme heat' timetables on some lines, being used for what I believe is the first time today on the Bendigo Lines - with only the Swan Hill corridor forecast to reach 36 degrees today (34 for Echuca and 33 for Bendigo).

The timetable appears quite hastily thrown together, with a few Epsom-Bendigo replacement taxis arriving before the connecting train departs, and an Up service travelling back in time to reach Southern Cross before arriving at Footscray just from a quick glance.

Is there any information out there that identifies any prerequisite conditions for these 'partial' WOLOs? Or maybe they are just ad-hoc?
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
It appears V/Line have introduced the concept of 'partial extreme heat' timetables on some lines, being used for what I believe is the first time today on the Bendigo Lines - with only the Swan Hill corridor forecast to reach 36 degrees today (34 for Echuca and 33 for Bendigo).

The timetable appears quite hastily thrown together, with a few Epsom-Bendigo replacement taxis arriving before the connecting train departs, and an Up service travelling back in time to reach Southern Cross before arriving at Footscray just from a quick glance.

Is there any information out there that identifies any prerequisite conditions for these 'partial' WOLOs? Or maybe they are just ad-hoc?
Contrillion
There are/were a series of instructions in one of the official documents (Rule and Regs, General Appendix, Working Timetable) all of which have fancy titles these days but they didn't read English or make sense thereby allowing anybody to do almost anything.
  Lockspike Deputy Commissioner

Probably a bit early to predict 45c this Friday. It'll be hot though.

People around here are a bit fed up with a railway that goes slow over summer.  It never used to be the case.

The old codger was not convinced and preferred the good old days with jointed rails and no WOLOS.  In that rsepect he was right for yonks we ran at 115kmh on jointed 94lb rail all year round - 15C to  40 + C and we seem to still be here.
kuldalai
As a person who has maintained track with short rails, long welded rails, and continuous welded rails, I'd choose CWR every time, it's just a damned sight easier. There's no real reason for heat related speed restrictions, modern track can stand compressive forces better than jointed track on timber. WOLO provision has been around for a long time, it's just that over the years risk averse management have lowered the threshold.
  Lockspike Deputy Commissioner

It appears V/Line have introduced the concept of 'partial extreme heat' timetables on some lines, being used for what I believe is the first time today on the Bendigo Lines - with only the Swan Hill corridor forecast to reach 36 degrees today (34 for Echuca and 33 for Bendigo).

The timetable appears quite hastily thrown together, with a few Epsom-Bendigo replacement taxis arriving before the connecting train departs, and an Up service travelling back in time to reach Southern Cross before arriving at Footscray just from a quick glance.

Is there any information out there that identifies any prerequisite conditions for these 'partial' WOLOs? Or maybe they are just ad-hoc?
Contrillion
It seems to me that our modern rail managers would be happier running a bus (or taxi) company. It seems as though running trains is all just too hard.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
It appears V/Line have introduced the concept of 'partial extreme heat' timetables on some lines, being used for what I believe is the first time today on the Bendigo Lines - with only the Swan Hill corridor forecast to reach 36 degrees today (34 for Echuca and 33 for Bendigo).

The timetable appears quite hastily thrown together, with a few Epsom-Bendigo replacement taxis arriving before the connecting train departs, and an Up service travelling back in time to reach Southern Cross before arriving at Footscray just from a quick glance.

Is there any information out there that identifies any prerequisite conditions for these 'partial' WOLOs? Or maybe they are just ad-hoc?
It seems to me that our modern rail managers would be happier running a bus (or taxi) company. It seems as though running trains is all just too hard.
Lockspike
Largely because they go out of their way, often due to corporate ignorance, to make it too hard.
  Lockspike Deputy Commissioner

Largely because they go out of their way, often due to corporate ignorance, to make it too hard.
YM-Mundrabilla
Pearls of wisdom
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Last night on the Ballarat line we had the ludicrous situation of heat speed restrictions (WOLO's) long after the cool change had arrived and the temperature in Ballarat was a mild 21c with around 2 hours to go before the 80km/h speed restrictions were lifted.

Indeed as the 16:32 DOWN Wendouree progressed through the heavy rain around Caroline Springs and the driver, seemingly religiously maintaining 80km/h to the point of braking when the train looked like it would exceed that speed on the slightest decline, the journey was a ludicrous farce.

Surely the drivers of trains have some leeway in which...heaven forbid, they could actually be trusted to make a decision about whether the temperature has exceeded 36c or has dropped back to the low 20's and if WOLO's really need to be observed, instead of the nanny state situation be someone with an extreme nervous condition in V/Line's head office who deems speed restrictions are necessary after midday and that's the way it will remain on that day...regardless.

Combined with the usual, obligatory signal outage during a time there is any lightning in the vicinity and the train becomes a glacially slow moving mass of humanity, especially when half of the train is missing and the remaining three cars are full and standing room only.

Mike.
  potatoinmymouth Chief Commissioner

Mike, last night there was also the contributing factor of my unfortunate steed, the down Wendouree/Maryborough, striking storm debris on the Bungaree loop, delayed 30 minutes there for train inspection in the pelting rain and making a terrible mess of everything as far as Melton.

On a more general note, from the point of view of most passengers, a predictable WOLO timetable is far preferable to “discretion”. If I’d diligently checked the website and found the train departing 15 minutes later from, say, Melton, and then arrived at the station to find it already gone because the driver had been told to drive to whatever schedule he wanted, I’d be pretty bloody annoyed.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Mike, last night there was also the contributing factor of my unfortunate steed, the down Wendouree/Maryborough, striking storm debris on the Bungaree loop, delayed 30 minutes there for train inspection in the pelting rain and making a terrible mess of everything as far as Melton.

On a more general note, from the point of view of most passengers, a predictable WOLO timetable is far preferable to “discretion”. If I’d diligently checked the website and found the train departing 15 minutes later from, say, Melton, and then arrived at the station to find it already gone because the driver had been told to drive to whatever schedule he wanted, I’d be pretty bloody annoyed.
potatoinmymouth
When I was working as a driver years back, and later on a trip to Broken Hill for a couple of nights, the driver was given a Wollo for west of Parkes, it was certainly a hot day but with 2 422's on trial for the 3 carriage train he was able to maintain the new allowed speed. As soon as the temp dropped, he was notified by control that the speed had been lifted back to normal but as we were approaching darkness the usual caveat with Wollo's applied and that was you had to be vigilant especially if the first train over the section that had been affected, to ensure no track damage was found.  

Under our Wollo conditions, when they were called off with the temps dropping below their level, it was our responsibility to notify control at each station regarding the condition of the track we had just gone over, that was the regulations that applied for the first train over a Wollo affected line to notify the lines condition, if no problems then following trains, in either direction were able to run at normal speeds.  Other allowances though, included if there were minimal number of trains, a ganger was called out to run the sections to give them the all clear.

In this day and age, while it may sound a silly idea, if a Wollo is introduced and the temp drops below the level of it needing to have been introduced, why not with modern technology if in daylight hours surely something akin to a drone could check the track conditions and be able to send the info to the train control and crews.
  jakar Assistant Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Last night on the Ballarat line we had the ludicrous situation of heat speed restrictions (WOLO's) long after the cool change had arrived and the temperature in Ballarat was a mild 21c with around 2 hours to go before the 80km/h speed restrictions were lifted.

Indeed as the 16:32 DOWN Wendouree progressed through the heavy rain around Caroline Springs and the driver, seemingly religiously maintaining 80km/h to the point of braking when the train looked like it would exceed that speed on the slightest decline, the journey was a ludicrous farce.

Surely the drivers of trains have some leeway in which...heaven forbid, they could actually be trusted to make a decision about whether the temperature has exceeded 36c or has dropped back to the low 20's and if WOLO's really need to be observed, instead of the nanny state situation be someone with an extreme nervous condition in V/Line's head office who deems speed restrictions are necessary after midday and that's the way it will remain on that day...regardless.

Combined with the usual, obligatory signal outage during a time there is any lightning in the vicinity and the train becomes a glacially slow moving mass of humanity, especially when half of the train is missing and the remaining three cars are full and standing room only.

Mike.
The Vinelander
Hi Mike,

The WOLO speed restriction for your line (and most others) is 90km/h. Its also a lot harder to drive a Vlocity at a slower maximum speed than it is at 130 or 160. When going down small declines or through undulating terrain wind resistance at high speeds will slow you down when its in notch 1 or off and there is no need to touch the brakes, at slower speeds though the train will continue to gain speed and require a bit of braking to avoid going over speed.

Just on that, in railway land the maximum speed is the maximum speed, and although there is a tiny tolerance, if you remain overspeed for any more than a very short period it can result in disciplinary action. The speed of the train can be checked via data logger, gps in both a live and historical view, and other equipment such a level crossing approach times. Rather than describe it as a farce, the fact that they had to brake often tells me the driver was trying to keep the train on its maximum speed as much as possible without dawdling along taking longer to get you home.

Drivers have no say in decision making such as WOLO's. Apart from the obvious timetabling issues PIMM has pointed out, everyone feels temperature differently. If there was an incident during a WOLO I don't think the coroner would consider it acceptable if a driver replied that it felt cool enough to go faster when he stuck his hand out the cab window. The current procedures say that WOLO's can be cancelled if the threshold temp (36 degrees) has not been reached by 1630 but at that stage there is no point in cancelling them as everyone would/should know its a WOLO timetable and have adjusted their schedules accordingly.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

It seems to me that our modern rail managers would be happier running a bus (or taxi) company. It seems as though running trains is all just too hard.
Lockspike
We have the opposite problem in Adelaide.

The managers run the trains the way they want to run the trains, regardless of whether that is appropriate for the circumstances or not. There's no room for flexibility or problem solving, it either runs as planned or the passengers are chucked off to fend for themselves.
  Daryl Junior Train Controller

Location: Carrum Downs
did you mean the 3 white posts?
Seems to be standard, how can you tell if creep is a problem unless you have a baseline?
This was late ‘80s stuff, before then, creep was probably not measured.
Perhaps a local ganger might know but they got rid of them.
Daryl
There is a mark on the side of the rail hit with a punch (well a small hole anyway), years later you'd see how far it's moved.
  Daryl Junior Train Controller

Location: Carrum Downs
It appears V/Line have introduced the concept of 'partial extreme heat' timetables on some lines, being used for what I believe is the first time today on the Bendigo Lines - with only the Swan Hill corridor forecast to reach 36 degrees today (34 for Echuca and 33 for Bendigo).

The timetable appears quite hastily thrown together, with a few Epsom-Bendigo replacement taxis arriving before the connecting train departs, and an Up service travelling back in time to reach Southern Cross before arriving at Footscray just from a quick glance.

Is there any information out there that identifies any prerequisite conditions for these 'partial' WOLOs? Or maybe they are just ad-hoc?
It seems to me that our modern rail managers would be happier running a bus (or taxi) company. It seems as though running trains is all just too hard.
Largely because they go out of their way, often due to corporate ignorance, to make it too hard.
YM-Mundrabilla
The ideology is to run a rail system without using the word "train" they are called "the service".
I recall a driver saying over the PA that smokers "will be removed from the service"

Seems awkward as some of the announcers try not to say "train". Seems to have eased in recent times. Common sense always prevails.
  KRviator Moderator

Location: Up the front
Just on that, in railway land the maximum speed is the maximum speed, and although there is a tiny tolerance, if you remain overspeed for any more than a very short period it can result in disciplinary action. The speed of the train can be checked via data logger, gps in both a live and historical view, and other equipment such a level crossing approach times
jakar
One thing I noted in the ATSB report into the Richmond buffer stop collision was this quote:

The only area of concern was the previously described over-speeding events where the driver exceeded the maximum speed for the  section of track on two occasions. These infractions were for a few kilometres per hour above the limit for a few seconds
The ATSB
Those overspeed events were 3km/h over for less than 5 seconds, and 2km/hr over for less than 2 seconds - both had no bearing on the ensuing accident yet they were both mentioned in the report...

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