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
            train.

            (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
            instructions.

      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
                  affected trains.

                  (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
                follows

                      (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
                is recalled.

                (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
            delayed train.

            (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
            detached

                  (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
                  parting.

                  (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
                      provided, and

                  (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
                  front portion.

            (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
            stationary.

            (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
            charge.

            (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
                circumstances.

            (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
            directed.

            (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.

      6.10 Fire

            (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.

            


The material on this page is extracted from Indian Railways General Rules (Open Lines), 1976, published by the Government of India.
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