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50430 Incorrectly displayed speed restriction signage

March 2012 in London Underground

tagged Rules and procedures Equipment Signalling South East

A reporter is concerned by the incorrect display of temporary and emergency speed restriction signage on the District Line, west of Putney Bridge to Wimbledon. The concern is that Drivers may be travelling too fast over a section of track, because they are unaware of the correct speed.

This particular section of track is signed, signalled and controlled by Network Rail and operated under their rules; however, the section is actually maintained by London Underground. The reporter believes Network Rail contractors may be responsible for erecting the signage.

Examples of incorrect signage include:

Temporary speed restriction boards: Warning boards set up, but no speed indicator board and sometimes no termination board either.  

Emergency speed restriction boards: Emergency speed indicator boards set up in exactly the same location as the warning board. 

In some locations, Drivers are also finding the mix of London Underground and Main Line railway speed restriction signage confusing. On the section of track in question, London Underground signage should not be used at all.

Could RSSB:

  • Comment on the correct set-up of temporary and emergency speed restrictions - specifically, where the signs should be placed? Clarify if the set up in the photograph is ever permitted?


Could Network Rail:

  • Explain who is responsible for setting up signage for speed restrictions and brief them if necessary?


Could Network Rail and London Underground work together to:

  • Ensure speed restriction signage is correctly displayed?
  • Set up a monitoring system for the correct use of signage?


Response from London Underground

Regular meetings are held between Network Rail and London Underground, at corporate and local level where the infrastructure is shared.

Feedback from London Underground has been given to Network Rail about this incident, and assurances have been sought that Network Rail will ensure correct procedures are followed when displaying trackside signage.

The local London Underground Duty Managers have been reminded that the Planned General Inspections (PGI) conducted should monitor signage, and that when engineering or maintenance work takes place on shared infrastructure, maintained by Network Rail, a PGI takes place following conclusion of the work.



Response from RSSB

The correct set up for normal running is as shown in Rule Book Module SP Speeds.

However, there are occasions when the required distance is not attainable because of number of constraints. For example, if an emergency speed restriction was set up on the end of a terminal platform there would be no alternative than to put all the required boards as close as practicable to the required distance; in some cases the emergency speed indicator might have to be at the same location as the warning board. Because trains are accelerating from a stand, the requirements to have everything at 183m (200 yards) would not be necessary. The distance between the warning board and the commencement board also might not be the required distance.

Each speed restriction has to be calculated in accordance with Group Standard GK/RT0075 'Lineside Signal Spacing and Speed Signage' and there are occasions when the required distances cannot always be complied wit h. The question regarding the set up in the photograph would have the same answer.

 50430 RSSB