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Yokohama Keikyu express train crashes and derails, leaving 30 people injured, September 5, 2019

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Sheffie

Mainichi makes it sound like the train driver was at fault—as if he should have applied emergency brakes immediately upon seeing the obstruction light. I think that’s an easy call for a newspaper to make; not so much for a train driver. 

 

I have no idea how often those obstruction detection systems light up, nor how often the obstruction is cleared before the train reaches the crossing. But I would think that the risks to passengers of applying the emergency brakes automatically need to be weighed.

 

And surely the signal needs to be further from the crossing. 

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katoftw

Yes it would be rude to place blame on a dead 60 something year old person whom is really the cause. So why not blame a 30 something train driver that is already in physical and emotional pain?

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Welshbloke

The train coped with the impact pretty well if there were only 30 injuries and no deaths on board. Obviously I have no idea how heavily loaded it was but that's strong bodywork and good brakes. Compare to some of the horrors seen in the days of wooden carriages, when it wasn't uncommon for a crash to leave four bogies from two vehicles under the same pile of matchsticks...

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railsquid
5 hours ago, Sheffie said:

I have no idea how often those obstruction detection systems light up, nor how often the obstruction is cleared before the train reaches the crossing. But I would think that the risks to passengers of applying the emergency brakes automatically need to be weighed.

 

I've experienced enough emergency stops (including ones triggered by crossing blockage detection or the emergency button being pressed) to say it's alarming but not dangerous, unless I suppose you're very unlucky and happen to be unable to grab on to something, but I haven't seen anyone actually injured as a result as of an emergency stop. Certainly prefereable to being involved in a collision.

 

As to what actions the driver took when, we'll have to await result the official investigation...

Edited by railsquid

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ben_issacs

Folks, 

Looking at the shots of the front of the train and the truck wreckage, the train front seems to be almost undamaged, which suggests that it didn't hit anything solid.

I suspect that the truck had a 'curtain body', which has rollup fabric curtains on a light frame, allowing rapid loading and unloading.

When the train hit the truck, its ripped through the curtain and ridden up over the truck frame which is at an angle, which has tipped the leading car over to its right.

Only speculation, of course, but if the train had hit the truck cab, I would have expected to see much more damage to the train front.

Here in Australia, EMU set fronts are often plastic, would  the Keikyo set have had a plastic or metal front?

Regards, 

Bill, 

Melbourne.

 

 

 

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bikkuri bahn
6 hours ago, Sheffie said:

Mainichi makes it sound like the train driver was at fault—as if he should have applied emergency brakes immediately upon seeing the obstruction light. I think that’s an easy call for a newspaper to make; not so much for a train driver. 

 

I have no idea how often those obstruction detection systems light up, nor how often the obstruction is cleared before the train reaches the crossing. But I would think that the risks to passengers of applying the emergency brakes automatically need to be weighed.

 

And surely the signal needs to be further from the crossing. 

Quite a few news outlets were subtly implying some kind of fault with the driver, a preposterous notion, and if online comments are any indication, there has been considerable push back and declarations of support for Keikyu and the driver of the train.  Once again, media tends to be sensationalist/ignorant and making assumptions too early in these incidents.

I am quite familiar with the location of the accident, been there numerous times while railfanning as well as using the station nearby (Kanagawa Shinmachi), and it is very hard to install fool proof detectors/indicators- the station spacing is quite close, any further out and probably it intrudes into the Keikyu Koyasu's block.  Furthermore, there is a curve on the approach to Kanagawa Shinmachi, so a Kaitoku service going at 120km/h leaves very little margin for error in terms of emergency braking.

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railsquid

As someone posted on Twitter:

 

 

(not an exact translation, but words to the effect of "if you think you could do a better job than the driver, watch this").

 

 

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railsquid

I haven't found an online reference, but on the TV news they said it took until 5am to clear the tracks.

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bikkuri bahn

Service has been restored on all sections of the Keikyu network as of 1:15pm  JST.

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Sacto1985

YouTube member (and JNS Forum member) ayokoi just posted a video of the track testing and resumption of service at the crossing where the accident occurred. Trains started opearting against at 1315 hours JST, as noted above.

 

 

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Welshbloke

Just came here to post the same video! Judging by the rattle of camera shutters in full auto it brought all the local railfans out.

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ben_issacs

Folks, 

Some thoughts on this accident.

The boom gates are automatically actuated by the train, through an inductive system with a fixed receiver between the rails and a transmitter on the train (actually two such, one at front, one at rear) 

As the train passes over the receiver, this closes a circuit to bring the booms down, then when the train is past the crossing, another receiver is actuated to bring the booms up.

All this is out of the control of the train driver.

The track receivers are located at such a distance that with the train travelling at line speed, the booms will be down before the train gets to the crossing.

Then there is usually a lineside system, of visual warning signals.

These on JR, are hexagonal boards, with five lights, and are controlled by what I think are infra-red systems looking across the road at the crossing, to detect any vehicle that stops on the crossing for a certain length of time.

If this time is exceeded, as far as I can remember, the five lights blink as a warning to the train driver that the crossing is obstructed.

A similar 'Obstruction Warning' system must be in place on the Keikyuo.

Now, I'm not a signal engineer, but the above explanation would seem to stand up.

So, it seems that for some reason the truck has stopped on the crossing, the approaching train has actuated the booms which have fallen onto the truck, but the train is already past the 'Obstruction Warning' signal, and the driver can only rely on line of sight, which one poster has said is not great enough to bring a train travelling at 120 kph to a halt before it gets to the crossing.

All the above is pure supposition on my part, and is quite open to dissection by people who are more knowledgeable than I!!

Regards, 

Bill, 

Melbourne

 

 

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katoftw

One of the pictured linked to by earlier posters showed 3 obstruction indicators leading up to the crossing. These answer your gaps in understanding and so forth regards this situation.  Worth going back through the thread and looking at the pics to fill in the missing peices.

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ben_issacs

Folks, 

From the scans, the Keikyo obstruction warning signals are of different form to those of JR, being square, with four lights.

Interesting to see the diagram showing the locations of these signals, perhaps the train was past the outermost of these signals before the truck go stuck,and so had less time from the second outermost  signal showing 'obstruction',, to apply the brakes.

Regards, 

Bill,

Melbourne.

 

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