ECoR guidelines for coping with foggy weather

Bhubaneswar: To ensure passenger safety during poor visibility conditions, the East Coast Railway has asked loco pilots and guards to run trains at a reduced speed, even if it affects punctuality.
As per instructions issued by the Safety Department of the ECoR, the guards have been asked to keep a watch so that loco pilots do not exceed the prescribed speed limit during fog.
In an automatic signal territory, the maximum speed of a train is restricted to 30 kmph and in absolute block territory it is 60 kmph during dense fog.
The highest priority should be accorded to passenger safety for which train running staff are being counselled by Railway Officers and Safety Counsellors to cope with poor visibility conditions, ECoR sources said.
The instructions also said that station managers should assess whether visibility was impaired badly enough in foggy weather to warrant the use of detonators, to provide an audible indication to the locomotive crew that the train was approaching a signal.
These detonators are flat, disc-shaped metal containers, usually red in colour, which contain an explosive mixture that detonates with the application of pressure when the wheels of the locomotive pass over it.
The Railway staff posted at stations, cabins and gates have also been instructed to place detonators in case of thick fog to warn the loco pilots, according to laid down rules & regulations.
In areas prone to dense fog, luminous and fluorescent strips are painted on OHE (Overhead Equipment) masts, level crossings and at busy traffic areas before an approaching "Stop Signal" to warn the loco pilot that the train is approaching a stop signal and running in sensitive areas.
This device is of great help to loco pilots who can spot these luminous strips even during fog and be extra careful, the sources said.
At night as well as in thick foggy or tempestuous weather impairing visibility during day, a Red Tail Lamp of approved design displaying a flashing Red Light to indicate last vehicle check and device should be lit on the last vehicle as per provisions.
Guards have been advised to use flasher lamps during day time also during fog, they said.