Latest facts and figures:
- London Overground Rail Operations are now live on GSM-R
- CA15 Goes live, this concludes South of the Severn-Wash GSM-R network
- Steam locomotives - Flying Scotsman and Olton Hall are now GSM-R ready
Our library of useful documents covers a number of subjects. It is updated regularly to help you keep up to speed with the GSM-R project.
NEW Training videos
Network Rail has produced a range of training videos for GSM-R users that show details on how to use the fixed terminal.
8 December 2011
Training programme picks up the pace
Training for passenger train and freight operating companies is picking up the pace as the end-2012 deadline for southern delivery of GSM-R draws nearer. Latest figures for the cab mobile programme show that over 2,000 drivers and over 900 maintenance staff have now been trained. The Driver Train-the-Trainer or ‘cascade’ system in conjunction with RODL is proving a particularly effective tool in delivering the programme, enabling skills and knowledge to be passed down through the workforce.
Phase 2 driver training has started at National Express East Anglia (NXEA) and East Midlands Trains (EMT). Train-the-Trainer courses are up and running at NXEA’s Ipswich depot and once complete trainers will be able to cascade their knowledge to drivers at the Crown Point depot in Norwich. Most EMT drivers are being trained in Nottingham, but if more convenient travel-wise, they can use the Crown Point depot. “NXEA has kindly agreed to share their facility when they aren’t using it, which has saved the time and cost involved in setting up training materials and cab mobile training simulators at another location,” says Jim Raymen, NRG Project Manager (Training).
Training locations and resources are currently being prepared for Cross Country’s 1,054 drivers and the 615 drivers and 462 guards at London Midlands, with Train-the-Trainer courses for both operators scheduled to start at the end of this year and early 2012.
In other news, Chiltern Railways training is on schedule with 110 drivers trained to date (read the full story in this bulletin).
Freight Operator Company (FOC) training
In FOC training news, a ‘multi-operator’ scheme is being piloted with DB Schenker, Europe’s leading freight train operator. Training for FOCs has presented a number of challenges, not least finding convenient training locations for drivers which tend not to be based in one place. “Freight operators don’t work to fixed routes like TOCs, so we’ve had to take a different approach to ensure that we maximise resources,” explains Jim Raymen. “Rather than training small groups in lots of different places we’ve been working with FOCi to provide multi-operator courses at strategic locations around the country. This gives FOCs much more flexibility and optimises course occupancy,” he says. And this flexibility could now be extended to Yellow Plant driver training. “Negotiations are currently underway with representatives from this sector to see if they can share training locations with FOCs,” adds Jim Raymen.
The Maintenance Training Working Group (MTWG), which developed the initial maintenance training programme, has been re-formed to manage introduction of the new Version 2 cab software. The MTWG, made up of representatives of the NRG, TOCs, and equipment manufacturers, has been tasked with amending the existing course to reflect the new software changes. Says Jim Raymen: “We’re designing V2 modules to meet the needs of trained maintainers and for new users.”
National rollout of GSM-R involves training 5,362 signalling staff on the Fixed Terminal System. Since July 2010 this training has been a one day course with maximum hands on experience, including portable simulators. 1,025 operations staff have been trained to date, putting the programme on track for completion by 31 March 2014.
A number of enhancements to assist the training process have been introduced since the programme started, says Debbie Pendry, Project Integration Manager for Professional Training & Development. “These include a Fixed Terminal training DVD,” she says, “to enable Operations Managers to refresh their knowledge on individual elements or functionality of the system once they’ve completed their training. We’ve also developed an A5 user manual and crib cards for all those who attend courses.”
According to Debbie Pendry, feedback from areas where GSM-R is already operational has been highly positive, with signallers commenting on how the system has enabled them to reduce delays and expedite recovery of service. “Controls at Birmingham, Liverpool Street, York, East Midlands, Cardiff, Swindon, and Glasgow are now GSM-R operational, along with signal boxes at 46 locations,” she says. Signalling staff at a further 46 locations are currently being trained ready for December 2011 and January 2012 Go-Lives, including Marylebone, Leamington Spa, and Bury St Edmunds.