Accidents and unusual occurrences
(Extract from IR General Rules : Chapter 6)
6.01 Accident or obstruction
(i) When report of any accident or obstruction is received by
the Station Master, he shall see that all necessary precautions
are taken by the most expeditious means possible, for the
protection of traffic.
(2) If an accident happens to a train , the Station Master
shall arrange for all necessary assistance to be sent to the
(3) The Station Master shall, as soon as practicable , report
each accident in accordance with special instructions.
6.02 Working in case of accident or failure of communications
In case of accidents to the line or to any train, or of failure
or interruption of communications, or in an emergency, trains
shall be worked between stations in accordance with special
6.03 Protection of trains stopped between stations
(1) When a train is stopped between station on account of
accident, failure, obstruction or other exceptional cause and
the Driver finds that his train cannot proceed, he shall
apprise the Guard of the fact by sounding the prescribed code
of whistle or through other means and exchange Stop hand
signals with him.
(2) The Guard and the Driver shall then immediately take the
following action in the rear and the front.
(a) if the stoppage has occurred on a portion of the line
adjacent to which are one or more parallel lines, whether
of the same or different gauges , the primary duty of the
Guard shall be protect or depute a competent railway
servant to protect the obstruction on the adjacent line
or lines on which trains run in the direction of the
affected train unless it is quite apparent and clear that
such adjacent line or lines are not obstructed.
(b) Similarly, the primary duty of the Driver shall be to
protect the obstruction on the adjacent line or lines on
which trains run in the direction opposite to that of the
(c) after the obstruction on the adjacent line or lines
has been protected, or when it has been ascertained that
the adjacent line or lines is or are not obstructed, the
line on which the train has stopped shall then be
protected both in the rear and the front and
(d) if subsequently the adjacent line or lines are found
to be free of obstruction, the protection may be removed
except where it is desired to stop an approaching train
to obtain assistance.
(3) (a) The Guard shall either himself go back or send a
competent person back to protect the train, if the Guard has
deputed a competent railway servant to protect the train, he
shall go to the Driver for consultation.
(b) The person going to protect the train shall continuously
show the Stop hand signal to stop any approaching train, and in
addition to his hand signals, shall take detonators and place
them upon the line on which the stoppage has occurred, as
(i) one detonator 400 metres from his train to be placed
on the way out: and
(ii) three detonators, 10 metres apart not less than 800
metres from his train or at such distance as has been
fixed by special instructions:
Provided that on the broad gauge the first
detonator shall be placed at 600 metres and the
three detonators at 1200 metres about 10 metres
apart, from the place where the train has stopped.
(c) If a person other than the Guard has gone to protect the
train, he shall, after taking action as per clause (b) continue
to show the Stop hand signal to stop any approaching train
until he is recalled.
(d) When the Guard has himself gone to protect the train , he
shall, after taking action as in clause (b) , depute a
competent railway servant , if available , to show a Stop hand
signal to stop any approaching train until he is recalled, and
shall himself return to his train to ascertain the cause.
(e) Unless the Guard has succeeded in getting another railway
servant to show Stop hand signal as in clause (d) he shall
after consultation with the Driver , once again returns to the
place at which he placed three detonators showing the Stop hand
signal to any approaching train and continue to do so until he
(f) When the Guard or the railway servant deputed by him is
recalled, he shall leave the three detonators and on his way
back pick up the intermediate detonator.
(g) On a section of double or multiple lines, if assistance has
been asked for, or on a single line section or during temporary
single line working on a section of double or multiple lines,
the Driver shall at once show a Stop hand signal to the front,
and proceed to protect the train in the manner prescribed in
clause (b) and (f) either by going himself or by sending his
Fireman or some other competent railway servant.
(4) In case of a train without a Guard , the duties of the
Guard, as laid down in this rule, shall devolve on the Driver
or on a railway servant deputed by him.
6.04 Trains unusually delayed
(1) If a train carrying passengers does not arrive within 10
minutes or if a goods train does not arrive within 20 minutes
after allowing for its normal running time from the station in
rear, the Station Master at the station in advance shall
immediately advise the station in rear and the Control of the
fact. There after on double or multiple lines, the Station
Masters at either end of the black section shall immediately
stop all trains proceeding into the block section on adjacent
line or lines in either direction and warn the Drivers and
Guards of such trains by issue of suitable caution orders and
shall also ascertain the whereabouts and the condition of the
(2) The action mentioned above shall be taken earlier, should
the circumstances so require.
6.05 Sending advice of accident or break down
If the engine is, for any reason unable to proceed, the Guard
or in his absence the Driver, shall convey, by the most
expeditious means, advice to the nearest station, stating the
location, nature and cause of the accident, and if assistance
has been asked for the train shall not be moved until such
assistance arrives, provided that if the train is subsequently
able to move, it may do so at walking pace, but not unless a
competent railway servant has been sent with hand signals and
detonators to protect the train, such railway servant keeping
at least 400 metres in advance of the train, the other end of
the train being protected in a similar manner.
6.06 Train in a block section without authority to proceed
(1) When a Driver becomes aware in a block section that he does
not have an authority to proceed or a proper authority to
proceed, he shall immediately stop the train.
(2) The train shall be treated as an obstruction in the block
section and protected as such, in accordance with Rule 6.03
(3) The Guard, or in his absence the Driver, shall convey the
report of the occurrence to the nearest block station by the
most expeditious means and the train shall thereafter move only
in accordance with the instructions which may be issued by the
Station Master to whom the occurrence has been reported:
Provided the when a proper tangible authority to proceed is
lost on the run, the Driver may proceed to the next station and
report the occurrence to the Station Master.
6.07 Report of conditions likely to affect running of trains to
Controller or Centralised Traffic Control Operator
(1) Drivers, Guards and Station Master shall advise the
Controller or the Centralised Traffic Control Operator of any
known conditions or unusual circumstances likely to affect the
safe and proper working of trains.
(2) The Controller or the Centralised Traffic Control Operator
, on becoming aware of such defect or failure , shall inform
the same to the railway servant responsible for the maintenance
of the equipment and other railway servants concerned.
6.08 Train parting
(1) If any portion of a train should, while in motion, become
(a) The Driver shall use his judgement to keep the front
portion in motion, if possible, until the rear portion
has been brought to a stand so as to avoid the chance of
a collision between the two options; and sound the
prescribed code of whistle to inform the Guard of the
(b) the Guard or Guards in the rear portion shall:
(i) do all they can to prevent a collision with the
front portion, and
(ii) promptly apply their hand-brakes, where
(c) The Driver of a banking engine, if any shall bring
the rear portion to a stand and sound the prescribed code
of whistle to attract the attention of the Driver in the
(2) As soon as the rear portion of a train has been brought to
a stand, the Guard of the train shall protect that portion in
accordance with Rule 6.03 both in the front and the rear, and
take steps to secure the vehicles in stationary position by
pinning down hand brakes and wherever necessary and prescribed
by special instructions by use of sprags and chain also.
(3) The Guard shall indicate parting of the train, by waving in
repeated motions as green flag by day, or a white light by
night, up and down vertically as high and as low as possible.
(4) When both portions of a parted train are brought to stand
within sight of each other and it is possible and safe to
couple them, the train shall be coupled with due caution under
hand signals from the Guard provided necessary precautions have
been taken to secure the rear portion in the manner described
in sub-rule (2)
(5) If the Driver of the parted train has already reached the
block station in advance before he could bring the front
portion to a stop, he shall instantly warn the Station Master
of the parting as also the railway servant in charge of a
cabin, if passed on the way, and shall not give up the tangible
authority to proceed, if any, till the block section is cleared
of all the vehicles of his train.
(6) The duties of the Guard specified in this rule shall
devolve on the Driver in the absence of the Guard.
6.09 Portion of train left in a block section
(1) When a train stopped in a block section has to be devided
in consequence of an accident or the inability of the engine to
take the whole train forward, the Guard of the train shall
immediately take steps to protect the rear portion of his train
in accordance with Rule 6.03
(2) If the engine is capable of proceeding either with or
without vehicles, the Guard shall, after taking action as
provided for in sub-rule (1) and before uncoupling, put down
the brakes and shall, if necessary, otherwise carefully secure
the rear portion of the train to ensure its remaining
(3) When the Guard has taken action as provided for in sub-rule
(2), he shall give a written permission to the Driver to
uncouple and proceed to the next station and may, if he thinks
fit, give him written instructions to return on the same line.
(4) On sections of the single line where token working is in
force, the Driver shall before leaving any portion of his train
in a block section, hand over the token to the Guard from whom
he shall obtain a written receipt. The Guard shall retain the
token until the block section has been cleared of all vehicles
of his train.
(5) At night or in thick, foggy or tempestuous weather
impairing visibility, as soon as the engine, whether with or
without vehicles is drawn forwarded, the Guard shall-
(a) protect his train in the front also in accordance with
Rule 6.03, and
(b) also see that a red light is shown on the front vehicle
of the rear portion of the train.
(6) When the front portion of the train is taken forward, no
tail lamp or tail board shall be placed on the rear vehicle of
the portion of the train but the Guard shall give its number in
full in the written permission referred to in sub-rule (3).
(7) On entering a station with the knowledge that the block
section in rear is obstructed, the first duty of the Driver is
instantly to warn the Station Master of this fact. If a cabin
is passed on the way to the station, the railway servant in
charge of the cabin shall also be informed of the fact.
(8) When under written instructions referred to in sub-rule(3),
the engine is to be brought back , the Guard shall, until the
arrival of the engine continue to remain in rear of the portion
of the train left in the block section and shall not permit a
following train, if any to move any of the vehicles under his
(9) (a) The Driver shall not bring his engine, with or without
vehicles, back on the same line unless he has received written
instructions under sub-rule (3) from the Guard to do so.
(b) In addition, on a multiple line section, the Driver
shall also have a written authority from the Station
Master, who shall ensure that no train is diverted on to or
crossing the same line on that portion of the track over
which the said Driver would be returning.
(c) The Station Master, before giving such written
authority , shall obtain necessary assurance as prescribed
by special instructions from the Station Masters having
diversion facilities and also inform the Controller of the
(10) On double a multiple line sections, the Driver may, under
instructions from the Station Master, take the train back on
the proper line, according to the system of working, until he
can cross on to the line on which he has left the rest of his
train and may then proceed by that line and after attaching the
engine shall work the train to the station to which he is
(11) When moving under written instructions against the
direction of traffic on a double line, or against the
established direction of traffic on a single line, the Driver
shall proceed cautiously and make frequent use of the
prescribed code of whistle.
(1) A railway servant noticing a fire, likely to result in loss
of life or cause damage to property, shall take all possible
steps to save life and property, to prevent it from spreading
and to extinguish it.
(2) In case the fire is on or adjacent to any electrical
equipment, the railway servant shall, if he is competent in
handling electrical equipment and specially trained for the
purpose, have the affected part immediately isolated from its
source of supply of electrical energy.
(3) The occurrence of a fire shall, in every case, be reported
to the nearest Station Master by the most expeditious means and
the Station Master shall take such action as may be prescribed
by special instructions.
6.11 Vehicles escaping from station
If any vehicle escapes from a station, the Station Master shall
take immediate steps to warns the other stations or persons
concerned, as far as practicable , to prevent an accident.