(2) When the crew pulls up to the west end, it is delayed 5
minutes more by another crew making a long double. Upon getting off
track 5, the crew heads up to cross the main track to pick up the
four cars for the head end of track 5. The yardmaster had planned on
the crew's crossing at 2120, just ahead of first-class train No. 87.
However, the conductor calls the dispatcher at 2130 and discovers
that No. 87 is late. The dispatcher grants permission to cross only
after No. 87 clears.
When it clears, the engineer whistles out a
flagman, the switches are opened, and the crew waits the 5 minutes
prescribed by the rules for block signal territory.
the conductor again calls the dispatcher to inquire if it is
permissible to leave the switches open because he will want to
recross to the yard in about 5 minutes--just as soon as he can couple
the four cars.
(3) The dispatcher refuses this request.
He has a through
tonnage train, waiting on a siding 3 kilometers east of the yard,
that had previous permission to head out and proceed west just as
soon as No. 87 passed.
When the yard crew opened the main-track
switch, a block signal close to the road train displayed a signal
meaning: "Slow, proceed with caution." If the switch were permitted
to remain open, the road train would receive a red (stop) block after
it had gone about 1 1/2 kilometers, and it would be forced to stop.
In the light of this, the dispatcher orders the switches closed and
instructs the yard conductor to wait until the road train clears.
(4) Meanwhile, the yardmaster sends his other west-end crew
almost to the opposite end of the yard before discovering the
predicament of the crew on the other side of the main. To start the
air inspectors on track 5, he must now have them hook up a temporary
airhose line over 100 feet long to reach from the air plug to the
When the crew arrives with the four cars, approximately
40 minutes have been lost, according to the yardmaster's original
Now a blue light, discussed in chapter 4, on track 5
prohibits entry and the four cars must be inspected and air tested
before being ready for movement.
All inspection personnel are
working on track 5 and when they finish, 5 minutes more are lost
inspecting and setting the four cars against the outbound train.
Fortunately, the road engine has no trouble in making the road air
test, and the train eventually departs 30 minutes late.
minutes might easily develop into 60 minutes if, out on the road, the
train were forced to take siding because of a first-class train
behind it. A first-class train is a scheduled train so designated by
Had the train departed on tine, it might have
been able to go to a yard where it had a scheduled stop and where it
would enter the yard to clear the train behind it.