Control and Working of Stations

(Extract from IR General Rules : Chapter 5)


      5.01 Responsibility of the Station Master for working

            (1) The Station Master shall be responsible for the efficient
            discharge of the duties devolving upon the staff employed,
            either permanently or temporarily, under his orders at the
            station or within the station limits and such staff shall be
            subject to his authority and direction in the working of the
            station.

            (2) The Station Master shall see that all signals, points,
            gates and level crossings and the whole machinery of his
            station are in proper working order and shall immediately
            report all defects therein to the proper authority.

            (3) The Station Master shall also be responsible to see that
            the working of the station is carried out in strict accordance
            with the rules and regulations for the time being in force.

            (4) No person other than the Station Master shall ask for or
            give Line Clear, or give authority to proceed.

      5.02 Supply of copies of the rules and distribution or exhibition of other documents

      The Station Master shall see -
            
            (1) that every railway servant subordinate to him who should be
            supplied a copy of authorized translation of these rules under
            Rule 2.01 duly receives the same ;

            (2) that the Working Time Table in force together with all
            correction slips and appendices, if any, working rules and
            instructions, and other notices having reference to the working
            of the line, are properly distributed or exhibited in such
            manner as may be prescribed under special instructions ;

            (3) that both the sheet time tables and fare lists are
            correctly exhibited at the station if it is open for the
            booking of traffic ; and

            (4) that copies of the Act, and the Goods and Coaching Tariffs
            are available for inspection by the public.

      5.03 Obedience to orders and keeping of books and returns
            
            The Station Master shall see that all orders and instructions
            are duly conveyed to the staff concerned and are properly
            carried out, and that all books and returns are regularly
            written up and neatly kept.

      5.04 Special Cabins
            
            (1) The Station Master shall make himself thoroughly acquainted
            with the duties of the staff employed in the signal cabins, if
            any, at his station and shall satisfy himself that they perform
            their duties correctly, and in order to maintain an effective
            supervision over the said staff, frequently visit the signal
            cabins.

            (2) The Station Master shall ensure that the prescribed
            equipment is readily available in signal cabins and maintained
            in good working order.

            (3) Signal cabins shall be kept neat and clean and no
            unauthorized person shall be permitted to enter such cabins.

      5.05 Report of neglect of duty
            
            The Station Master shall report, without delay, to his
            superior, all neglect of duty on the part of any railway
            servant who is under his orders.

      5.06 Station Working Rules
            
            (1) In addition to the General Rules for Indian Railways and
            Subsidiary Rules of a Railway, each station shall be provided
            with Station Working Rules applicable to the station, issued
            under special instructions.

            (2) A copy of the Station Working Rules or relevant extracts
            thereof shall be kept at cabins and level crossings concerned.

      5. 07 Forms
            
            (1) All messages and written authorities mentioned in these
            rules shall be prepared on prescribed forms laid down in these
            rules or prescribed under special instructions and shall be
            stamped with the station stamp.

            (2) If the authorized printed form is not available for any
            reason or in exceptional circumstances a manuscript form
            containing all the particulars as contained in the prescribed
            form is issued as an emergency measure, reasons therefor shall
            be recorded in the station diary.

      5.08 Access to and operation of equipment
            
            No unauthorized person shall be permitted to have access to or
            operate signals, points, electrical block instruments and
            electrical communication instruments or any other appliances
            connected with working of the railway.

      5.09 Reception of a train on an obstructed line
            
            (1) In case of reception of a train on an obstructed line, the
            Station Master shall -
            
                  (a) whenever possible, intimate the Driver through the
                  Station Master of the station in rear that the train is
                  to be received on an obstructed line;

                  (b) ensure that the signal or signals controlling the
                  reception of the train are not taken 'off'; and

                  (c) ensure that all the points over which the train has
                  to pass are correctly set and the facing points locked.

            (2) After the train has been brought to a stand at the relevant
            Stop signal, it may be received on the obstructed line by -
                  
                  (a) authorizing the Driver to pass the Stop signal at
                  'on' by taking 'off' the Calling-on signal, where
                  provided; or

                  (b) authorizing the Driver on the signal post telephone,
                  where provided, to pass the Stop signal at 'on', in
                  accordance with special instructions; or

                  (c) authorizing the Driver to pass the relevant signal or
                  signals at 'on' through a written authority to be
                  delivered by a competent railway servant who shall pilot
                  the train past such signal or signals.

            (3) The train shall be brought to a stand at the facing points
            leading to the reception line until hand-signaled forward by a
            competent railway servant.

            (4) A Stop hand signal shall be exhibited at a distance of not
            less than 45 meters from the point of obstruction to indicate
            to the Driver as to where the train shall be brought to a
            stand.

            (5) The Driver shall keep his train well under his control and
            be prepared to stop short of any obstruction.

      5.10 Reception of a train on a non-signaled line
            
                  (1) Should it be necessary, in an emergency, to receive a
                  train on a line which is not signaled for reception, the
                  Station Master shall ensure that -

                      (a) the train is brought to a stand at the first Stop
                      signal;

                      (b) the line on which it is intended to receive the
                      train is clear upto the place at which the train is
                      required to come to a stand;

                      (c) all the points over which the train has to pass
                      are correctly set and the facing points locked; and

                      (d) the Driver is authorized to pass the approach
                      Stop signal at 'on' through a written authority to be
                      delivered by a competent railway servant who shall
                      pilot the train on to the non-signaled line.

                  (2) The Driver, while entering a non-signaled line, shall
                  proceed cautiously and be prepared to stop short of any
                  obstruction.

      5.11 Departure of a train from a non-signaled line
                  
            (1) In the event of a train having to be started from a line
            not provided with a Starter signal, the Driver shall be given a
            written permission to start : Provided that such permission may
            be dispensed with where a tangible authority to proceed is
            given to the Driver.

            (2) The written permission or the tangible authority to proceed
            referred to in sub-rule(1) shall not be given unless all the
            points for the departure of the train have been set and the
            facing points locked.

      5.12 Departure of a train from a line provided with a common departure signal 
            
            (1) In the event of a train having to be started from a line
            out of a group of lines provided with a common departure
            signal, the Driver shall be given a written permission to start
            in addition to the authority to proceed under the system of
            working.

            (2) The written permission and the authority to proceed
            referred to in sub-rule (I) shall not be given unless all the
            points for the departure of the train have been set and the
            facing points locked.

      5.13 Control of shunting 
            
            (1) Shunting operations shall be controlled by fixed signals or
            hand signals or by verbal directions.

            (2) The Driver shall not, however, depend entirely on signals
            and shall always be vigilant and cautious.

            (3) The speed during shunting operations shall not exceed 15
            kilometers an hour unless otherwise authorized by special
            instructions.

      5.14 Resposibility for Shunting 
            
            The station master shall see that the shunting of train or
            vehicles is carried on only at such times and in such manner as
            will not involve danger.

      5.15 Shunting at stations under Centralised Traffic Control
            
            (1) No shunting shall be performed at a station under
            Centralised Traffic Control without the permission of the
            Centralised Traffic Control Operator or when Centralised
            Traffic Control is not in operation, without the permission of
            the Station Master.

            (2) For the purpose of shunting, the Centralised Traffic
            Control Operator may, when required, hand over the local
            control of working of traffic at a station or part of a station
            to the Station Master who shall thereafter be responsible for
            the shunting at the station of that part of the station for
            which the local control has been made over to him in the manner
            prescribed under special instructions.

      5.16 Shunting during reception of trains
            
            When signals have been taken 'off' for an incoming train on to
            a line which is not isolated, no shunting movement shall be
            carried out towards points over which the incoming train is to
            pass.

      5.17 Shunting near level crossing
            
            The railway servant in charge of shunting near or across a
            level crossing, before giving permission to the Driver to move
            his train across it, shall ensure that the level crossing gates
            have been closed and locked against road traffic.

      5.18 Drawing of a train to an advanced position at night or in thick,
      foggy or tempestuous weather impairing visibility
            
            At night or in thick, foggy or tempestuous weather impairing
            visibility, a train waiting for an authority to proceed shall
            not be allowed to draw out to a Starter in an advanced
            position, or upto an Advanced Starter except where track
            circuits indicate the presence of the train in the advanced
            position.

      5.19 Obstruction of running line
            
            (1) No railway servant shall commence any loading, shunting or
            any other operation by which a running line may be fouled or
            obstructed without obtaining the previous sanction of the
            Station Master or of other railway servant nominated in this
            behalf under special instructions, who shall see that all
            necessary steps are taken for the protection of traffic while
            such operation is being carried on and the necessary signals
            are kept at 'on' until the obstruction is removed.

            (2) A sand hump or snag dead end shall not be obstructed for
            any purpose and when it has become obstructed, it shall cease
            to be a substitute for the adequate distance for the purpose of
            taking 'off' signals.

      5.20 Shunting on gradients 
            
            When shunting is being performed on a gradient, the railway
            servant in charge of the shunting shall ensure that -
            
                  (a) sufficient number of brakes are put on, sprags are
                  used, where necessary, slip siding points or traps, where
                  provided, are set to ensure safety and that all
                  precautions are taken to prevent vehicles getting out of
                  control, and

                  (b) in case of shunting over a portion of line on steep
                  gradients, neither isolated nor protected by slip
                  sidings, an engine is also attached towards the falling
                  side of the gradient.

                  Note: For purposes of this rule a steep gradient shall be
                  1 in 260 or steeper except in case of vehicles fitted
                  with roller bearings, when it shall be 1 in 400 or
                  steeper.

      5.21 Loose shunting 
                  
            Cranes, vehicles containing passengers, workers, explosives,
            dangerous goods or live-stock or any other vehicle that may be
            specified under special instructions, shall not be loose
            shunted and no loose shunting shall be made against them.


      5.22 Leaving vehicles in sidings outside station limits 
            
            No railway servant shall leave any vehicle in a siding outside
            station limits, unless the vehicle is clear of all running
            lines and, except under special instructions, unless the
            vehicless thereof are properly secured.


      5.23 Securing of vehicles at stations
            
            The Station Master shall see that vehicles standing at the
            station are properly secured in accordance with special
            instructions.



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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