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mediccjh

The Schoolcar Experience

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28 minutes ago, staffspm1 said:

to train a train driver is 12 months in the UK give or take, but we are not nearly as strict as what I have read here!! I've been studying your rules to see the differences and that can be interesting as well!!

In those 12 months, what kind of training or learning is it? and what are the time frame for each phase?

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Ok here goes - it is not standard across the UK (any parts that are are BOLD)

Week 1 - Monday to Wednesday - Company welcome and induction, forms filled etc

week 1 - Thursday and Friday - Personal track safety (qualification to walk on railway tracks)

Week 2 + 3 - Mon - Fri Intro to Operations. Theory rules-based and visits to control centres, signal boxes (towers I think to you) visit stations. Basics of the rulebook and a gentle intro to the job. Test at the end 80% pass mark.

Week 4 + 5 - shift hours Front end Turns. This means just shadowing a driver and watching what they do - NO DRIVING for the trainee.

Week 6,7 + 8 - Rules Part 1 - back in the classroom Mon to Fri for more rule book training. Mostly recapping Intro to operations but also getting into more details. Signalling is covered extensively here as well.  Test at end 80% pass.

Week 9, 10 + 11 -- Basic traction course. Each depot has a main type of train they drive. This three course is to learn the insides and outsides of the train BUT not how to drive it fully. You will do some yard shunting at very low speed and practice coupling and uncoupling. Test on day 8 and 11 of this course 80% pass rate. Mon - Fri usually

Week 12 + 13 - Return to classroom Mon - Fri for last theory training. You cover the previous rules courses and recap but also learn the last bits which mostly cover out of course working and emergencies. At the end of this course, there is another 80% pass test and also a review by a driver manager to ascertain whether they are competent or not.

If you pass this test and driver manager is happy then you are technically a competent driver. However, you still cannot drive!!

For the next 255 hours (40 in darkness) you are assigned a driving instructor who watches you drive and teaches you how to drive. 

During these weeks you get pulled aside for the odd day courses such as Signal Passed at Danger awareness (teaching you the risks of red signals and how you can avoid passing one) also seasonal awareness and principles of route learning.

At the end of this, if all is well you qualify and become a Post Qualified Driver and can drive on your own. During the first two years, as you are considered higher risk you cannot have anyone else in the cab with you and you are subject to more assessments.

Hopefully that answers the questions, anything else please ask.

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Posted (edited)

Thank you for the very insightful overview! Your training is a lot better paced than the MTA. You're not introduced to basic traction course to get the feel for the train to do slow speed yard movement until week 8 whereas we're told to do that on the 2nd week. Also, you don't get to fully drive a train until week 14-15 (presumably) whereas we're thrown into the main line going 25-30 mph doing station stops on the 3rd week!! It's utterly insane and sheer madness at the MTA. It also explains the attrition rate of induction classes. It's like 50%.

I'm currently wrapping up week 1 of 8 of yard operations (what we call YX) by myself with no trainers. Today I had a former military and police veteran as a supervisor and he was just up on my ass the entire time while I was moving that train in the yard, it was nerve-wrecking. TEN HUT!

Edited by nipaaaa

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sorry to ask odd questions but some of your terminology I don't understand.

 

What are relays?

what is cutting?

puttins? 

 

thanks

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, staffspm1 said:

sorry to ask odd questions but some of your terminology I don't understand.

 

What are relays?

what is cutting?

puttins? 

 

thanks

a relay is moving a train from a northbound track to the southbound track and vice versa

cutting is the act of separating a train into 2 halves (you cut or uncouple a train)

"Put in" is short for putting a train into service. The opposite would be putting a train out of service or a lay up. I jokingly refer to them as "Putin" like ... vladimir putin lol

Edited by nipaaaa

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Third week of Road posting, had the A 3 days so far and the C next 2 days. Been getting good reviews from trainers everyday, feel like overall operation is good! Understand how to approach timers and blind spots! Station stops of course get better daily, miss one or 2 here n there, but I think that’s from not knowing the location of the station car stop signs, so it’s easy to misjudge a brake here n there! Gotta stay positive and keep the confidence in knowing you can control your train and stop it! Hope everyone else who is YX doing their thing, forum been dry lol. 

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Posted (edited)

4 more weeks of YX... can't wait til hitting the road. Been doing the PM tours and now I'm starting AMs. As I'm writing this, I'm supposed to be in bed winding down in my sleep but my body is so used to the PMs that I couldn't fall asleep at all. For example, I have to report to 207 yard at 0600 so I tried going to sleep at 1900. I give myself 2 hours to take the subway since I live all the way down in Brooklyn by the verazzano bridge, and 1 hour to eat breakfast so I have to wake up at 0300. This first day of AM is gonna be rough going in with no sleep. Just have to bite the bullet and hopefully I'll be exhausted by the end of the shift so I can fall asleep around 6-7pm.

Edited by nipaaaa

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On 3/12/2019 at 3:03 PM, staffspm1 said:

Ok here goes - it is not standard across the UK (any parts that are are BOLD)

Week 1 - Monday to Wednesday - Company welcome and induction, forms filled etc

week 1 - Thursday and Friday - Personal track safety (qualification to walk on railway tracks)

Week 2 + 3 - Mon - Fri Intro to Operations. Theory rules-based and visits to control centres, signal boxes (towers I think to you) visit stations. Basics of the rulebook and a gentle intro to the job. Test at the end 80% pass mark.

Week 4 + 5 - shift hours Front end Turns. This means just shadowing a driver and watching what they do - NO DRIVING for the trainee.

Week 6,7 + 8 - Rules Part 1 - back in the classroom Mon to Fri for more rule book training. Mostly recapping Intro to operations but also getting into more details. Signalling is covered extensively here as well.  Test at end 80% pass.

Week 9, 10 + 11 -- Basic traction course. Each depot has a main type of train they drive. This three course is to learn the insides and outsides of the train BUT not how to drive it fully. You will do some yard shunting at very low speed and practice coupling and uncoupling. Test on day 8 and 11 of this course 80% pass rate. Mon - Fri usually

Week 12 + 13 - Return to classroom Mon - Fri for last theory training. You cover the previous rules courses and recap but also learn the last bits which mostly cover out of course working and emergencies. At the end of this course, there is another 80% pass test and also a review by a driver manager to ascertain whether they are competent or not.

If you pass this test and driver manager is happy then you are technically a competent driver. However, you still cannot drive!!

For the next 255 hours (40 in darkness) you are assigned a driving instructor who watches you drive and teaches you how to drive. 

During these weeks you get pulled aside for the odd day courses such as Signal Passed at Danger awareness (teaching you the risks of red signals and how you can avoid passing one) also seasonal awareness and principles of route learning.

At the end of this, if all is well you qualify and become a Post Qualified Driver and can drive on your own. During the first two years, as you are considered higher risk you cannot have anyone else in the cab with you and you are subject to more assessments.

Hopefully that answers the questions, anything else please ask.

Hey bro. So are you RR proper or more like the Metro? Even the US RR aren't as strict as we are and that includes LIRR and MNRR and they're owned by our same parent company. Different guidelines different lvls of discipline I suppose.

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Been reading this thread since the beginning good to see folks are learning and people are getting posted..

Just REMEMBER there is no stupid question ask ask ask.. 

Over here in the B Div there are lots of knowledgeable folks who are more than willing to help.....

Oh and be very Mindful what is said on the radio they are sending TSSs out there to check up on those who "should know" and act on the radio like they do not know..

Never get RCC involved with things that are simple and easy to figure out....

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On 4/10/2019 at 1:28 PM, RTOMan said:

Been reading this thread since the beginning good to see folks are learning and people are getting posted..

Just REMEMBER there is no stupid question ask ask ask.. 

Over here in the B Div there are lots of knowledgeable folks who are more than willing to help.....

Oh and be very Mindful what is said on the radio they are sending TSSs out there to check up on those who "should know" and act on the radio like they do not know..

Never get RCC involved with things that are simple and easy to figure out....

Just to add...

When you are out on your own, always be mindful of your partner and communicate.  Communication helps a lot and solves 99% of the problems.

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On 4/8/2019 at 5:48 PM, IronboundNJT said:

Hey bro. So are you RR proper or more like the Metro? Even the US RR aren't as strict as we are and that includes LIRR and MNRR and they're owned by our same parent company. Different guidelines different lvls of discipline I suppose.

RR I assume you mean railroad? We use the term railway here so I get confused. Yes I am a mainline railway driver trainer. The rules for our metros (London) are much the same though!

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Posted (edited)

Heres another hint.. For those doing Mikey Lay Ups to D3 Parsons when you get to Briarwood go into the station(The Homesignal will always be at danger so do not bother to call the tower asking for the line up) and Punch at the ten car not eight car marker.. Parsons Tower cant see you in the camera if you punch at the 8 car marker.

Edited by RTOMan
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For those of you doing Road Ops after your second signal exam, if you get a 68A or 160 on the Brighton line, very important you practice going in hard and taking a strong brake last minute.

Yes, I am telling you to slide out of the station, particularly at Ave M and Ave J.  Know what it feels like to have no control in a controlled environment.  It will help you later on when you take a train in inclement weather.

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On 4/20/2019 at 9:04 AM, Dave2836 said:

For those of you doing Road Ops after your second signal exam, if you get a 68A or 160 on the Brighton line, very important you practice going in hard and taking a strong brake last minute.

Yes, I am telling you to slide out of the station, particularly at Ave M and Ave J.  Know what it feels like to have no control in a controlled environment.  It will help you later on when you take a train in inclement weather.

Lmao what the hell? You can’t be serious, are you? You do that and best believe you will have a nice conversation with a superintendent! How about you just come in the station under control and stop your train accordingly, it’s not that serious, are you on the job? 

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On 4/21/2019 at 11:59 PM, Imhim said:

Lmao what the hell? You can’t be serious, are you? You do that and best believe you will have a nice conversation with a superintendent! How about you just come in the station under control and stop your train accordingly, it’s not that serious, are you on the job? 

You won’t have a nice conversation with a superintendent. Road ops is a control environment. That’s the perfect time to do it. It’s just you and your school car TSS in an empty train. 

If you do that during road posting then that’s a different story lol 

 

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21 minutes ago, Elfamoso2020 said:

You won’t have a nice conversation with a superintendent. Road ops is a control environment. That’s the perfect time to do it. It’s just you and your school car TSS in an empty train. 

If you do that during road posting then that’s a different story lol 

 

You’re correct, my fault he did say Road Ops, I read Road Posting, my apologies, still it’s not that serious to do that, especially if you’ve been having trouble operating already through school car, you know your TSS will tell the others and you put a target on ya back. 

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14 minutes ago, Imhim said:

You’re correct, my fault he did say Road Ops, I read Road Posting, my apologies, still it’s not that serious to do that, especially if you’ve been having trouble operating already through school car, you know your TSS will tell the others and you put a target on ya back. 

I don’t think they would be telling others because that’s would make them look like a bad TSS that couldn’t train his student well enough to Operate a train. It would make them look like a bad trainer. You get what I’m saying right?! 

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8 hours ago, Elfamoso2020 said:

I don’t think they would be telling others because that’s would make them look like a bad TSS that couldn’t train his student well enough to Operate a train. It would make them look like a bad trainer. You get what I’m saying right?! 

I understand but I’m telling you it happens because I seen it first hand! Had a guy in my induction class who failed the customer prep practical and his TSS gave us our practical same day and he was saying he knows dude is gonna fail and already told my TSS who was giving his class their practical like yeah this dude is shaky and he most definitely failed. But you know what honestly that’s not all on the TSS, some ppl just can’t get the concept of operating down. It happens the job isn’t for everyone. 

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8 hours ago, Imhim said:

I understand but I’m telling you it happens because I seen it first hand! Had a guy in my induction class who failed the customer prep practical and his TSS gave us our practical same day and he was saying he knows dude is gonna fail and already told my TSS who was giving his class their practical like yeah this dude is shaky and he most definitely failed. But you know what honestly that’s not all on the TSS, some ppl just can’t get the concept of operating down. It happens the job isn’t for everyone. 

Well that’s understandable. That happens all the time. That’s another TSS telling your school car TSS that that person is shaky and is going to fail. 

In that other post,  you made it sound like your own TSS will tell other TSS’s that your operating is horrible thus putting a target on your back. 

Thats the part I was saying, they wouldn’t do that because it’s gon make them look like a bad trainer. 

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1 hour ago, Elfamoso2020 said:

Well that’s understandable. That happens all the time. That’s another TSS telling your school car TSS that that person is shaky and is going to fail. 

In that other post,  you made it sound like your own TSS will tell other TSS’s that your operating is horrible thus putting a target on your back. 

Thats the part I was saying, they wouldn’t do that because it’s gon make them look like a bad trainer. 

lol that’s not the same thing? Again training someone doesn’t make them a good operator. You can train a person to know all the procedures and signals, but if someone is just shaky in the cab how does that make the TSS a bad trainer? It’s not just knowing definitions and getting high scores on test, once you’re operating all that is out the window. The TSS isn’t holding your hand, taking brake, power, reading grades, etc. 

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Here's the real when it comes to school car. The TSS there are knowledgeable but not all of them have the ability and or the patience to teach. Combine that with the way the syllabus is designed you don't really move trains often. and as such a typical person doesn't know if this job is for them or not until around yx roughly 4-5 months in. Plus classes are too big and in the beginning whether it's intentional or not you end up in this study to pass instead of study to know. It's not impossible but there are too many hiccups in it's design.

But then there's the individual person, because of that whole study to pass ideal, when they do they seem to let all that knowledge fall out their brain to the wayside.

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14 minutes ago, IronboundNJT said:

Here's the real when it comes to school car. The TSS there are knowledgeable but not all of them have the ability and or the patience to teach. Combine that with the way the syllabus is designed you don't really move trains often. and as such a typical person doesn't know if this job is for them or not until around yx roughly 4-5 months in. Plus classes are too big and in the beginning whether it's intentional or not you end up in this study to pass instead of study to know. It's not impossible but there are too many hiccups in it's design.

But then there's the individual person, because of that whole study to pass ideal, when they do they seem to let all that knowledge fall out their brain to the wayside.

Perfectly put!

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Almost 6.5 years later, and my thread is still going strong.

Those of you in the IRT on the midnights, you'll see me.


Like @RTOMan says, don't be afraid to ask the questions. You're only as good as your last move. My job is to provide a school of instruction as needed, so feel free to pick my brain. I like sharing my knowledge. 

Good luck, and be careful out there. 

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On 4/23/2019 at 1:22 AM, Elfamoso2020 said:

You won’t have a nice conversation with a superintendent. Road ops is a control environment. That’s the perfect time to do it. It’s just you and your school car TSS in an empty train. 

If you do that during road posting then that’s a different story lol 

 

Exactly.  Put the train in full service and feel it slide.  It will help. You will know how dangerous it is when done, but the experience is worth the finger pointing by the TSS.  Then if you really understand the train, you might feel the flat on the wheel you made when you take off, coast, or take brake.

 

When you posting or out on your own, that's gonne be a G2 and they will blame the TO for failure to have the train under control.  You can slide out at any given moment, 40mph or 3mph.

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