It’s almost mid-winter season and people are looking to cover themselves up to avoid cold breezes. As winters arrive the nature also covers itself from fog. This fog ruins plans made by some to spend their vacation as the trains run late and most of the vacation is spent up in travelling.
Actual cause of the delay
The loco-pilot is to see signals and speed limits that are about the tracks and has to simulate the train accordingly. As the fog covers up the visibility decreases comprehensively and makes it difficult for the loco-pilots to see the upcoming signals, speed-limits etc. which even can cause accidents. To avoid this they have run the Train in a speed slower than desired by the Time-Table and makes the train late.
What is Indian Railways doing to speed-up the trains in fog?
It’s really not that the railways are not working to speed-up trains. They have taken several steps but they weren’t successful enough to continue as they did not really made trains faster.
Some of the effective steps are mentioned:
- GPS based Fog Safe Device: The device GPS and satellite navigation to predict the upcoming signals.
- Accurate dimension
- The system has below 2% Failure Rate Percent Per Year. It has been tested extensively in Northern, North Western and North Eastern Railway since 2010 and proven its reliability and utility
- Several Improvements have been made in consultation with RDSO and the device is now RDSO Approved
- Improvement in section through-put during fog with improved safety
- Greater confidence to loco-pilot
- Driver is per-alerted about approaching signals
- Marked reduction in over shooting cases
- Road-user safety at unmanned LC gates during dense fog as driver is alerted to blow the horn on
The Power of Simplicity:
- Fog safe has been designed for easy comprehension by Loco-pilot
- Its simplified Display Format and clear human voice announcement minimizes driver involvement allowing him to concentrate on piloting the locomotive
- The system is not unpleasant as it avoids buzzers while reducing Pilot’s overall stress
- The system is self managing and Driver only has to select the section of operation at start of journey and thereafter the system is self managing
But as the system was expensive so it is still not completely installed due to which some of the trains are still slow. Also this system tends to lag when the weather goes bad.
- TRI-NETRA – Terrain imaging for diesel dRivers Infra-red, Enhanced Optical & Radar Assisted system
TRI-NETRA system is made up of high-resolution optical video camera, high sensitivity infra-red video camera and additionally a radar-based terrain mapping system.
These three components of the system shall act as three eyes (Tri-Netra) of the Locomotive Pilot.
TRI-NETRA is designed to “see” the terrain ahead of the running locomotive during inclement weather by combining the images captured by the three sub-systems and to create a composite video image which shall be displayed in front of the Loco Pilot on a computer monitor.
The TRI-NETRA system is still in its early use so it is difficult to say anything about it.