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The Warning (W) signal

Current and future British signalling (UK except Northern Ireland)

The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Chris Rideout » Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:20 pm

In semaphore days, if there was a route set across the overlap of the signal ahead (leaving a very short overlap) the signal in rear would sometimes have a "W" arm below it. Examples of this could often be found approaching stations where a train would be leaving a platform while another would be signalled into an adjacent platform.

With colour light signalling, what method of warning is given? Would it be a Draw Ahead with no route shown, or would there be a delayed yellow?
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby S&TEngineer » Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:36 pm

On the WR since the first panels in 1960, the WARNING aspect has been given by the main signal showing a 'delayed' yellow aspect (i.e. the berth track circuit to the signal must be occupied for time). This control, in theory, should bring the train proceeding to the exit signal under control, but of course the driver has no idea why. This is also the current national method.

In earlier days I have seen installations where the WARNING aspect was given by a subsidiary signal showing two white lights at 45° with an associated 'W' letter displayed in the aperture used for the red light in a conventional subsidiary shunt signal. In some cases the subsidiary signal could show the 'W' or alternatively 'C' if it was being used to signal a CALLING ON aspect. I would need to dig out a few documents to find out where the latter arrangement was used (but have a feeling it was an early LNER thing).
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Roger Bell » Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:57 pm

In earlier days I have seen installations where the WARNING aspect was given by a subsidiary signal showing two white lights at 45° with an associated 'W' letter displayed in the aperture used for the red light in a conventional subsidiary shunt signal. In some cases the subsidiary signal could show the 'W' or alternatively 'C' if it was being used to signal a CALLING ON aspect. I would need to dig out a few documents to find out where the latter arrangement was used (but have a feeling it was an early LNER thing).


March South had a miniature semaphore "Down Main Warner" with W stencil bearing out your LNER thought.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby S&TEngineer » Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:18 pm

Roger Bell wrote:
In earlier days I have seen installations where the WARNING aspect was given by a subsidiary signal showing two white lights at 45° with an associated 'W' letter displayed in the aperture used for the red light in a conventional subsidiary shunt signal. In some cases the subsidiary signal could show the 'W' or alternatively 'C' if it was being used to signal a CALLING ON aspect. I would need to dig out a few documents to find out where the latter arrangement was used (but have a feeling it was an early LNER thing).


March South had a miniature semaphore "Down Main Warner" with W stencil bearing out your LNER thought.
Roger

Yes, but the original post was about colourlight signals.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby alancolq » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:00 pm

The LNER era colour-light signalling at Edinburgh Waverley which survived until 1977-78 featured subsidiary signals in the form of power operated discs mounted on the signal post below the main aspects. Design-wise they were more like banner repeaters, with the moving "bar" of the disc mounted in front of a white background and all encased behind a glass cover. Warning signals, e.g for entry to an already occupied platform had a "W" fixed behind the bar of the disc. Others had "S" or "C" as appropriate for Shunt or Calling-on.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby scarpa » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:31 pm

At Barking station down tilbury line the platform starter in advance of the platform 7 due to TFL line running adjacent BK 58 searchlight with position I and 4 route indicators had a Position light signal with a W stencil where the red aspect would have been.This was provided for the Down Goods line .
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby scarpa » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:36 pm

I should add the position 4 route indicator with a main aspect BK58 was the signal for the Down Goods with the Warning signal provided .It was rarely used if at all.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Richard Pike » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:20 am

Roger Bell wrote:
In earlier days I have seen installations where the WARNING aspect was given by a subsidiary signal showing two white lights at 45° with an associated 'W' letter displayed in the aperture used for the red light in a conventional subsidiary shunt signal. In some cases the subsidiary signal could show the 'W' or alternatively 'C' if it was being used to signal a CALLING ON aspect. I would need to dig out a few documents to find out where the latter arrangement was used (but have a feeling it was an early LNER thing).


March South had a miniature semaphore "Down Main Warner" with W stencil bearing out your LNER thought.
Roger


The March South warner isn't shown here..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/pwayowen/7340930244/ or here..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/31918291666/

The latter shows the St Ives marked up for recovery. I wonder how old the MS warning arm was? I have it and it's lamp.

20 at WJ is shown as lettered 'C' but was it a warner?

https://www.flickr.com/photos/pwayowen/8538675233/
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Roger Bell » Sat Feb 17, 2018 10:14 am

Perhaps we should start a new thread ......
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Chris Rideout » Sat Feb 17, 2018 5:37 pm

S&TEngineer wrote:
Yes, but the original post was about colourlight signals.

To add to the fun, at Southampton Central, the semaphore Up Local and Up Through home signals had colour light Calling-on signals (2 white lights at 45 degrees) and a Warning signal for trains entering platform 2. The indications would show a C or W depending on whether the track circuit at platform 2 was occupied or clear.

I have seen a ground signal disc on the post immediately under colour light signals but colour light signals under semaphore arms seem quite unusual. No doubt some of you know places where I have not visited and will tell us all.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby StevieG » Sat Feb 17, 2018 5:57 pm

alancolq wrote:The LNER era colour-light signalling at Edinburgh Waverley which survived until 1977-78 featured subsidiary signals in the form of power operated discs mounted on the signal post below the main aspects. Design-wise they were more like banner repeaters, with the moving "bar" of the disc mounted in front of a white background and all encased behind a glass cover. Warning signals, e.g for entry to an already occupied platform had a "W" fixed behind the bar of the disc. Others had "S" or "C" as appropriate for Shunt or Calling-on.
Was the W really for entering an occupied platform alancolq? Seems unlikely if there were also C's for Calling-on there.
There were plenty of S's in the KX resignalling of similar vintage, no W's, but only one C, which was on the same main signal as an S.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby scarpa » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:56 pm

Another site where miniature arm and a W stencil was at the down platform starting signal operated by Westcliff -On Sea signalbox. This was in regular use throughout the day .Interestingly the next signal was Southend Central Distant signal .Its strange what regulation prompted the regular use of the Warning signal
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Sun Feb 18, 2018 1:59 pm

StevieG wrote:Was the W really for entering an occupied platform alancolq? Seems unlikely if there were also C's for Calling-on there.
There were plenty of S's in the KX resignalling of similar vintage, no W's, but only one C, which was on the same main signal as an S.

The rules are quite clear about the distinction between Warning and Call-on. For multiple occupancy of platforms Warning would be proper provided there is a stop signal half-way along the platform and another train was standing beyond it. I would expect a Warning signal to be locked to require the relevant part of the platform to be clear, whereas a Call-on would commonly be locked to require it occupied. The Warning has the advantage of assuring the driver that there is enough space to accommodate his train assuming it is of no more than normal length, so it is preferable in very long platforms. Strictly speaking it would be incorrect to use a Call-on if the train in advance is clear of the next stop signal.

One could conceive of a situation where long trains stood foul of such a second signal whilst short ones were clear, yet I've never come across a situation where both types of subsidiary are provided under the same running signal. Presumably that would be considered bad practice? A driver could interepret a subsidiary without a W or C either way, but I am not aware of such signals being provided to cover both situations, that would be ambiguous. Route knowledge presumably includes which type each subsidary is.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Chris Osment » Sun Feb 18, 2018 4:06 pm

>>>... I've never come across a situation where both types of subsidiary are provided under the same running signal.

The Down Homes at Westbury North had subsidiary arms which could show either 'C' or 'W'. AIUI the 'C' was used for a train/light engine to go onto the back of an existing train in the platform, whereas the 'W' was used if the platform was clear but the line in advance of the its 'starting' signal (worked by Westbury Middle as its Down Home) was blocked.
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Re: The Warning (W) signal

Unread postby Chris L » Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:37 pm

At one time, the Down Starting/Section signals at Bolton East Junction had subsidiaries which were capable of functioning as (and displaying) the full "Co-op" - 'C', 'W' & 'S'.

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