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The Schoolcar Experience


mediccjh
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Yes it is but it's to my understanding that the last group to go into the program just went in. We'll know a little more in the coming weeks. School car seems to be remaining hush about it.

 

Looks like that *Failed experiment* from some higher Up is over with..

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Looks like that *Failed experiment* from some higher Up is over with..

The funny part is this. If the last of them went into the 3 month yard posting that means they will come out of school car about the same time as a recently inducted class of T/Os.

 

Hence there will be a flood of new T/Os hitting the rails at that time. Too many for all of the TSS' to keep up with. An increase of new road T/O incident numbers by double. Ticked off line Supts and school car Supts and maybe an increase in the number of those hitting the streets just from a lack of patience.....

 

As Jim Ross used to say "Things are about to pick up."

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The funny part is this. If the last of them went into the 3 month yard posting that means they will come out of school car about the same time as a recently inducted class of T/Os.

 

Hence there will be a flood of new T/Os hitting the rails at that time. Too many for all of the TSS' to keep up with. An increase of new road T/O incident numbers by double. Ticked off line Supts and school car Supts and maybe an increase in the number of those hitting the streets just from a lack of patience.....

 

As Jim Ross used to say "Things are about to pick up."

 

 

Yeah peaks and valleys thats how i see it. Things will work out fine.

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RTOMAN & RTOPRO  what are some of the types of things newbies are getting hammered with and something that ppl like us ready to come in should be more aware of??

 

Also appreciate your guys insights and info for us ready to make the leap of faith hahaha

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RTOMAN & RTOPRO  what are some of the types of things newbies are getting hammered with and something that ppl like us ready to come in should be more aware of??

 

Also appreciate your guys insights and info for us ready to make the leap of faith hahaha

 

 

All i gotta say is *Follow instructions*. Thats where Incidents happen.

 

Also dont be afraid to question, or ask two three for four times as well.

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I completely agree with the above statement. It's not a matter of focusing on what everyone else is doing. It's focusing on what you can do to remain safe and keep others around you safe. In regards to the yards. Communicate constantly. It's the key to what you don't know.

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Good luck and congratulations to anyone who is starting Monday. It's going to be very overwhelming in the beginning just stick with it. Everyone I speak to says its a great job and the advice I always get is don't assume anything if you don't know ask questions and the most important thing is know your job. I am 2 months into school car and so far I love it. 7 more months to go.

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RTOMAN & RTOPRO  what are some of the types of things newbies are getting hammered with and something that ppl like us ready to come in should be more aware of??

 

Also appreciate your guys insights and info for us ready to make the leap of faith hahaha

 

-Signal overruns. Learn where the signals are and familiarize yourself with the line's timers. Always know where home signals are, and don't challenge ANY signal. If you're unfamiliar with an area, learn to really respect the yellow signals. They'll keep some distance between you and the reds if you use them. If you go bombing by a yellow since you don't see a red signal yet and are thinking "I got this", you probably don't.

 

-Station overruns. Respect the fast stations. You can fly into stations but grab brake early, and don't grab it all. If you're taking more than 40-50 pounds on SMEE equipment, and are going into or very near full service on NTT equipment, you're doing it wrong. If you find you have long brakes, or the train delays when you go to apply, you want to be able to take more. If you just fly into the station and throw it into full service, you just blew your wad...because if you need more brake, there's no more to be gotten. Come in hot, but brake early and moderately, and adjust based on how the train is handling.

 

-Wrong routes. Know your lineups. Utilize the route indicator signs found at the stations before points of no return. Question any lineup that differs from what you expect, and communicate. Sometimes you are legitimately being rerouted...sometimes you are lined up wrong. It's not a wrong lineup until you pass the homeball.

 

-Yard "snafus". Read the iron (especially trailing point switches) and get permission before you do anything. If you're not familiar with the move, ask the YD for a spot...they can do it watching you move on the board. When laying up trains, pull tight so as not to overhang. Always walk around your train when moving it, and be alert for signals you might be overhanging while you check your train (and if so be sure to check them for a clear aspect before you ask for permission to move). Make all safety stops and secure SMEE trains with handbrakes. Remember when moving out of the shop the first place you go is the car desk, not the train, and remember to communicate with the bug man AND get permission from the YD before moving out (after you've checked the train of course). Remember when moving into the shop that you cannot enter unless invited in. Always check the doors are above clearance markers.

 

-Speeding. Comply with speed restrictions. 5+ MPH over a speed restriction is grounds for a write up. 10+ MPH over a speed restriction is grounds for being taken out of service on the spot.

 

-Stupid stuff. Wear the uniform, be where you're supposed to be whether it's on the train or in the crew room, don't mouth off to supervision, don't try to pad your payroll, don't lie about things (especially with those NTT's), no drugs ever and no alcohol before work, and be humble.

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Subwayguy thanks for the info that's good stuff. I know they will go over all this is schoolcar but good to know what guys aren't paying attention too. I'm lookn forward too learning the rules and that smooth operation through those yellows ;)haha

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-Signal overruns. Learn where the signals are and familiarize yourself with the line's timers. Always know where home signals are, and don't challenge ANY signal. If you're unfamiliar with an area, learn to really respect the yellow signals. They'll keep some distance between you and the reds if you use them. If you go bombing by a yellow since you don't see a red signal yet and are thinking "I got this", you probably don't.

 

-Station overruns. Respect the fast stations. You can fly into stations but grab brake early, and don't grab it all. If you're taking more than 40-50 pounds on SMEE equipment, and are going into or very near full service on NTT equipment, you're doing it wrong. If you find you have long brakes, or the train delays when you go to apply, you want to be able to take more. If you just fly into the station and throw it into full service, you just blew your wad...because if you need more brake, there's no more to be gotten. Come in hot, but brake early and moderately, and adjust based on how the train is handling.

 

-Wrong routes. Know your lineups. Utilize the route indicator signs found at the stations before points of no return. Question any lineup that differs from what you expect, and communicate. Sometimes you are legitimately being rerouted...sometimes you are lined up wrong. It's not a wrong lineup until you pass the homeball.

 

-Yard "snafus". Read the iron (especially trailing point switches) and get permission before you do anything. If you're not familiar with the move, ask the YD for a spot...they can do it watching you move on the board. When laying up trains, pull tight so as not to overhang. Always walk around your train when moving it, and be alert for signals you might be overhanging while you check your train (and if so be sure to check them for a clear aspect before you ask for permission to move). Make all safety stops and secure SMEE trains with handbrakes. Remember when moving out of the shop the first place you go is the car desk, not the train, and remember to communicate with the bug man AND get permission from the YD before moving out (after you've checked the train of course). Remember when moving into the shop that you cannot enter unless invited in. Always check the doors are above clearance markers.

 

-Speeding. Comply with speed restrictions. 5+ MPH over a speed restriction is grounds for a write up. 10+ MPH over a speed restriction is grounds for being taken out of service on the spot.

 

-Stupid stuff. Wear the uniform, be where you're supposed to be whether it's on the train or in the crew room, don't mouth off to supervision, don't try to pad your payroll, don't lie about things (especially with those NTT's), no drugs ever and no alcohol before work, and be humble.

Lots of good stuff in what was said here. The best thing for you Justin is to pay attention in schoolcar, pay attention to the tss's and also pay attention to people you post with. You'll learn the right things in schoolcar and you will hear a lot of crap from the "crew room attorneys", but you'll be able to weed out the good from the bad. Oh yeah...ask questions....ask again....and ask again if you're not sure. Then ask again to make sure!! Lol. Some people(rcc, dispstchers etc) might get annoyed with the questions, but let them. Best to ask and be sure than to not ask and mess up

 

As was said by someone else, learn from other peoples mistakes! You will make some mistakes....EVERYONE DOES, but learn from them! You'll learn all about signals, fast stations, where you should brake, lineups etc. when you get out there and you'll develop your own method.

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A word to the wise for those yard posting, whenever possible be caught reading your rule book &/ manuals. Besides supervision, many others ie coworkers take note on how wise or unwisely probies use their time in the crew rooms.

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A word to the wise for those yard posting, whenever possible be caught reading your rule book &/ manuals. Besides supervision, many others ie coworkers take note on how wise or unwisely probies use their time in the crew rooms.

First week of schoolcar. So much information!!! HELP..

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Thanks! How long would you say before someone can start to get acclimated and truly begin to understand it all?

 

Depends on the person. Just take as much time as you can, and on your way to work, if riding trains in your division, hang out near the T/O position (not in the cab or all up in their space) and observe their operation. If it feels safe and comfortable, take notes. If it feels rough and reckless make a note to not operate that way. Observe what the signals do, and pay attention to lineups, etc.

 

Learn the rules, learn the signals, learn procedures, etc. and all the stuff they will actively teach in schoolcar. That should be your primary focus the first few months of schoolcar until you're comfortable. And learn the way we speak down here. If a TD comes up to you and says "that's you on the stand" or "your layup in the east pocket" you need to know what they mean. The sooner you get comfortable with the vocabulary the more time you can spend learning the important stuff

 

...but also make a note to observe and learn physical characteristics of the lines. They will never test you on this, and you will pick *some* up from posting, but particularly after month #3 in schoolcar you need to be doing this on your own. It will help you immensely when you're on your own if you are familiar with areas.

 

There's a saying that says in order to truly master a line you have to learn it twice.

 

You start out slow and kind of cautious, then you learn how all the signals work in time that it becomes second nature. And then you gain speed in your operation (from control and knowledge, not recklessness).

 

Then you have to learn it all over again for how to operate when you're right behind your leader xD because the signals behave completely differently of course in that case.

 

That said, also recognize that things can change. New timers are constantly added, so practice the right things and you won't have a problem. But the knowledge will help you an awful lot.

Edited by SubwayGuy
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A word to the wise for those yard posting, whenever possible be caught reading your rule book &/ manuals. Besides supervision, many others ie coworkers take note on how wise or unwisely probies use their time in the crew rooms.

 

Spot on the are watching the New folks Close (too many incidents)... MTA is a "reactive agency"..

 

So who ever screws up the ones behind them feel the brunt, it is what it is.

 

Ask ask ask questions! There is never a stupid question. RTOPRO and Subway guy are spot on with the postings.

 

One thing me and my classmates did was each one of us (on our own time) rode a line and just "noticed" anything particular about the line Fast station slow timers etc etc. Then we all shared the information to be honest it helped up a lot a heck of a lot. Well it helped that i started in the Red Bird Era too so we just looked out the Window up front.

 

Take your time learn the Job never let any one rush you. You stick to the rules and you can never go wrong. BTW the Code of Conduct read and understand what it means...

Edited by RTOMan
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Depends on the person. Just take as much time as you can, and on your way to work, if riding trains in your division, hang out near the T/O position (not in the cab or all up in their space) and observe their operation. If it feels safe and comfortable, take notes. If it feels rough and reckless make a note to not operate that way. Observe what the signals do, and pay attention to lineups, etc.

 

Learn the rules, learn the signals, learn procedures, etc. and all the stuff they will actively teach in schoolcar. That should be your primary focus the first few months of schoolcar until you're comfortable. And learn the way we speak down here. If a TD comes up to you and says "that's you on the stand" or "your layup in the east pocket" you need to know what they mean. The sooner you get comfortable with the vocabulary the more time you can spend learning the important stuff

 

...but also make a note to observe and learn physical characteristics of the lines. They will never test you on this, and you will pick *some* up from posting, but particularly after month #3 in schoolcar you need to be doing this on your own. It will help you immensely when you're on your own if you are familiar with areas.

 

There's a saying that says in order to truly master a line you have to learn it twice.

 

You start out slow and kind of cautious, then you learn how all the signals work in time that it becomes second nature. And then you gain speed in your operation (from control and knowledge, not recklessness).

 

Then you have to learn it all over again for how to operate when you're right behind your leader xD because the signals behave completely differently of course in that case.

 

That said, also recognize that things can change. New timers are constantly added, so practice the right things and you won't have a problem. But the knowledge will help you an awful lot.

Appreciate the words of wisdom. Thank you! Will definitely take heed to your advice.

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Spot on the are watching the New folks Close (too many incidents)... MTA is a "reactive agency"..

 

So who ever screws up the ones behind them feel the brunt, it is what it is.

 

Ask ask ask questions! There is never a stupid question. RTOPRO and Subway guy are spot on with the postings.

 

One thing me and my classmates did was each one of us (on our own time) rode a line and just "noticed" anything particular about the line Fast station slow timers etc etc. Then we all shared the information to be honest it helped up a lot a heck of a lot. Well it helped that i started in the Red Bird Era too so we just looked out the Window up front.

 

Take your time learn the Job never let any one rush you. You stick to the rules and you can never go wrong. BTW the Code of Conduct read and understand what it means...

 

Yup my thing when I was brand new was OCD style notes (and, side note, I do still update them when things change). Every timer and posted speed restriction on every line in my division (as well as, for timers, the speed they actually clear comfortably at), along with other miscellaneous notes (wheel detectors, fast stations, points of no return, green diverges, areas with no restriction you should operate slower, etc.).

 

I used to think I was overdoing it, but two things about it: writing everything down helped me remember it since I'd write it twice...once on a piece of paper I had handy, then once when I got home when I put it in the computer. And second, the amount of TSS's and Superintendents who told me they did exactly the same thing when they first started down here.

 

Also - irregular moves, be sure to remember them however you do that. You may not see it for a while, and then will be expected to do it again in a few months. And if you're unfamiliar with a move, don't be afraid to let RCC or local supervision know.

Edited by SubwayGuy
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RTOMan I'm jealous you were in the redbird era =p haha I loveee the redbirds those are the trains I used to ride when I was small lookn out the window..that started my dream hahaha

 

Thanks as always for the info

Just think about a guy like me who started out looking out the windows of BMT Standards, Triplexes, and Myrtle Avenue El cars. I ended up in the "A" Division instead before the redbirds. Looking back on it today I can honestly say that I learned a lot from my motor instructors and the oldtimers in the yards. As someone pointed out earlier much of what you hear in crew rooms is BS but in time you will learn whom to listen to. Keep your eyes and ears open and you'll be fine.

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One big key especially for me is never allowing myself to become content with my operation no may how much time I have under my belt and no matter how good I know I am.

 

I've made trains dance to the tune of 50+ in Joralemon tube. I've made a 6 train fly into 77th n/b & s/b and 96th n/b at 40+ and stopped the train on the mark every time with the smoothness of a cat. I've had some of the best partners out there and fed off of them making the trip as smooth, quick and pleasant as you could ask for.

 

But none of that matters because as we say down here you're only as good as your last move. So I remind myself that yesterday was yesterday and even if I was at my best I try to replicate it but many factors keep that from happening. Different partner, different train, different weather, different mood (you), different passenger load, etc.

 

You'll learn to deal with these various factors. You'll learn quickly how to determine if your train has dead motors and how it compares operating one trip versus the next and it will annoy you to no end when you work the 1 & 6 because you take that train downtown and you take that same train back uptown. Poor performance the whole trip.

 

The key to becoming as some would say a "M/M" as oppose to just a "Train Operator" as some refer because they consider the train teachings today to be cookie cutter compared to the old days, is to pay attention to the details from day one. The key to this job is the details.

 

At first you'll worry about moving the train and hope you're doing it right, then you'll worry about bring it into the station and making it stop as close to the mark as possible and all of this while keeping a strong eye on the signals, then you'll gain confidence and you'll learn how to manipulate the timers to your advantage, but one of the biggest pieces of them all and mind you I'm not mentioning a whole host of other things, is keeping an eye on that road bed for obstructions, especially entering the stations and keeping an eye on the people on the platform.

 

Getting used to those who love to pretend to jump will be humbling for you but as I tell everyone else, you see it you take a brake. Why you ask? You say you know they're only faking right? Well I ask you this. Give me the statistics on the number of people who were faking the jump and for some reason ended up slipping and falling unintentionally in front of and now under the train. Don't have the stats you say? Well that makes sense because if the person is dead how can they tell you their side of the story? So simply put they're a jumper.

 

Details.....this job more than any other you might have had is about the details. Their clues are your keys to surviving 25+ years in the meat grinder.

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RTOPRO I love your posts man so much info. If I get the A Div I hope I get to roadpoast with you and see you operate and learn some tips of the trade. Especially with the timers I've seen several ppl post they learned valuable info from there roadposting from vets about the timers. Good stuff as always man much appreciated

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