colors, and signal-light aspects, to make certain that both read such
signals similarly; answering the whistle signals of main-track trains
with the appropriate whistle signals of the yard engine; complying
with timetable instructions in crossing main tracks; questioning a
signal when it is known to be, or reasonably believed to be, unsafe
to obey it; and periodically inspecting and lubricating the running
gear of the locomotive.
In military railroading, men of the car repair platoon of the
railway equipment maintenance company are assigned to yards as
inspectors. Car inspectors examine and make running repairs to cars
entering a yard.
Air inspectors test the airbrake equipment of
trains after they are built up and before their departure from the
The following subparagraphs further discuss these men and
a. Car inspectors.
One of the most important jobs involved in
the movement of trains is done by the car inspectors. If defects are
not noticed and corrected, serious consequences may follow.
defective car is dispatched in a train, it could cause a derailment
or a lengthy delay in setting the car off en route. A typical method
used by car inspectors to inspect long trains is outlined in chapter
2, paragraph 2.7a.
Each car must be checked for over 200 possible
defects. Inspectors are required to make close inspection of wheels
and flanges, journals and bearings, underframes, brake rigging,
and many other parts.
Roof sheets, ladders, and running boards on
closed-top cars must be inspected.
Experienced men can usually
inspect a car in less time than it takes to recount all the possible
defects for which it must be inspected.
c. Air inspectors. Inspectors, often qualified in all phases of
inspection, are sometimes detailed to air inspecting and testing
When a train is coupled, it is moved to a point where the
airhose on the first car is over the hose connected to the ground air
line. The inspectors couple air gages between these hoses and start
over the train, coupling the hoses between cars as they progress.
When all hoses are coupled and sufficient pressure is attained in the
trainline and reservoirs, a brake application is made on the train.
The inspectors examine the piston travel to determine if enough
braking force is being exerted on the wheels of each car.
adjustment to the linkage may be needed to cause