India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

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Mark D
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India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Mark D » Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:50 pm

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2018/04/09 ... oided.html

One would think that at least one of all those people aboard would have the sense to walk through the cars and set a mess of hand brakes. Oh, that's right - This is India. They have no clue, but I'm certain the cars had hand brakes.

Mark D.
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John Bohon
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby John Bohon » Thu Apr 12, 2018 9:56 am

What does this being from India have to do with passengers who would not think of the cars having hand brakes? I see plenty of our tourist passengers who can barely find the steps to get on the trains much less know where the hand brakes would be or even if there are any. As amazing as it seems to those of use who work with equipment of any kind regularly the world has moved away from people having any mechanical sense whatsoever. Those are the facts and we are left to deal with them. As for stopping passenger cars with hand brakes I can tell you it is not as easy or fast as with freight cars. Having gravity switched both types of cars many times in my career you had better have a lot of room to stop a passenger car with a hand brake if there is any grade at all. If there were any crewman on any of these cars I would hope they had the sense to set the hand brakes. Perhaps that is one reason the cars went so far without derailing. If no crew was on the cars all bets are off.

John Bohon

Mark D
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Mark D » Fri Apr 13, 2018 9:24 am

Ok, strike the comment about Indian people. I agree that it takes a long distance to stop a passenger car that's moving and no air. In this case, they had many miles, which gave someone who might know about it (maybe even a conductor on the train?) would have had time to stop the train after a few miles - or many kilometers. in the end it stopped and no harm done except nobody got to where they planned to go.
What I don't get is why the cars don't have air tanks so when the line pressure drops air should be applied to the brakes from that. If they don't have that, they surely should. The only thing I can think of is the engineer did a lot of braking beforehand and ran the reservoirs down to nothing. That would imply an idiot engineer barring a mechanical failure that I can't comprehend.
Mark D.
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John Bohon
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby John Bohon » Sat Apr 14, 2018 5:49 pm

I have no idea what kind of brakes they have in India. The video is in the dark so I could not see any air hoses so they may not be air. Regardless the most frequent cause of runaways like this would probably be not having the brakes tied into the locomotive to start with. That could be from the original terminal or a valve like an angle cock could have somehow closed under way. From my experience gravity switching passenger cars there are definitely limits to how steep the grade can be in order for the cars to stop. We would drop cars knowing we had to ride to a flat spot in the track. These cars are creeping along for a run away and have a red marker at both ends. I do not know if this is the beginning of the runaway or the end but it would seem the people could just step off at the speed they are moving. Without more information it is hard to determine what was really going on here. At least nobody got hurt. Airplanes that get out of control seldom have this good a conclusion.

John Bohon

Mark D
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Mark D » Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:14 am

Good reasoning John. I agree that it's difficult to discern what really was going on from here.
I do think they had to have some sort of hand brake control. Otherwise how do they put trains together or shunt cars here or there? I suppose they can just bang them into other cars and hope the couplers lock because if they don't the car can roll back, and what stops the whole cut of cars from rolling away other than maybe a few wedges or skates under a few wheels?
Anyway, like you said, it was going so slowly people could have gotten off on their own if they thought they had to. Most likely they weren't thinking at all. just waiting for some railroad worker to come and 'save' them.

Mark D.
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Charles T. McCullough
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Charles T. McCullough » Sun Apr 15, 2018 5:13 pm

If you get off, you lose your spot!

"No way I'm gettin' off, you get off!"
"No, YOU get off!"
"Not me! I had to knock 3 people off to get this spot, I'm not giving it up!"
Semper Vaporo,
Charles T. McCullough


Pkgs.

Mark D
Conductor
Posts: 3137
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 5:01 pm
Location: Sort of between Litchfield and Forest City, MN.

Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Mark D » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:48 am

Good one Charles. Looks to me like you've been there, done that. And above all, you are probably most correct.

Mark D.
Mark D. - The bottom of the information curve

Charles T. McCullough
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Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Charles T. McCullough » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:18 am

The only real train ride I have ever had was one where the passengers fought tooth and nail for a window seat... then promptly closed the window shade and went to sleep. My son and I had to sit at opposite ends of the car, (IN THE DARK because all the window shade were down), and wait until some station where one of the sleepy-heads got off, so one of us could commandeer the seats together so we could at least visit while traveling. This was on Amtrak, Raleigh to DC and DC to Newark. At least on the second leg, we learned to NOT "be nice" and let someone shove us out of the way, without shoving (HARD!) back (it sure seemed to shock them that the obvious tourist would fight back!)
Semper Vaporo,
Charles T. McCullough


Pkgs.

Mark D
Conductor
Posts: 3137
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 5:01 pm
Location: Sort of between Litchfield and Forest City, MN.

Re: India Pass Train Runaway No Brakes

Postby Mark D » Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:04 am

Ahh, the wonderful life of riding the trains.
I have only ridden on a passenger train twice. Once when I was quite young, maybe 10 years old, with my grand parents and my older sister. We left Mpls. on the Zepher to Chicago where we got onto the James Whitcomb Riley to Indianapolis. Same thing in reverse two days later. All went well, the conductor on the Zepher let my sister and me ride in the vista dome. Cool!

The next, and at this point last, train trip was from Minneapolis to Seattle on the #7 and a week later back on #8. We had a sleeper. The conductor had an empty roomette so my wife had one room and I the other right next to each other. That was great because those roomettes are not very spacious. All was well for us, including the meals in the dining car. But I walked back through a few passenger cars to get to the car with big windows and tables and chairs, I forget what they called it. I would call it a lounge car. It had a closed snack bar. I never saw it open. My wife and I played domino's at one of the tables. Later I got tired of it after three games, and a guy came along and taught my wife how to play Prison Domino's. He learned it in prison.
The one nasty part of riding that train was the stench in the coaches that we walked through. Good Lord, how it stunk!

We tipped the conductor that let us have two roomettes very well. Oh, he also showed me where they kept the bottles of orange juice and said I could take one when I wanted to.

But the best thing of all was that none of those trains lost their braking! They always stopped where they were supposed to stop.

Mark D.
Mark D. - The bottom of the information curve


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