Remote Train Crossings at Unmanned Loops Before CTC

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Terry Shipman
Posts: 1
Joined: 25 May 2016, 16:49
Location: East Grinstead, West Sussex, England

Remote Train Crossings at Unmanned Loops Before CTC

Post by Terry Shipman »

I was always fascinated bt the ritual witnessed many dozens of times years back when travelling through the Karoo and other remote areas where train crossings took place at remote unmanned loops consisting of just the main line, a passing loop with manual points and mechanical indicators at each end.

I'm hoping that somebody who was footplate crew or a guard can shed some light on this procedure.

1) What was the convention on which train entered the loop and which train used the main?

Was it done by direction, or the first train to arrive?
How were the points set and locked after the crossing was completed?

2) How did the tablet exchange take place?
Was it done directly between engine crews or was the guard involved in the exchange?

3) What part did the guard play in the process?

I can remember seeing guards walking up the train to the engine many times while waiting
for the other train to arrive at the crossing.

4) Did faster trains such as the Orange Express or BlueTrain get priority to overtake
slower trains at loops?

Any information that can shed some light on this would be well appreciated.
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John Ashworth
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Posts: 22264
Joined: 24 Jan 2007, 14:38
Location: Nairobi, Kenya

Re: Remote Train Crossings at Unmanned Loops Before CTC

Post by John Ashworth »

Welcome to the FOTR Forum, Terry. I'll leave it to some of the current footplate crew and guards to answer this. If there's no reply in a while I'll root out my old manuals and see if I can give you an accurate answer.
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