What is "three-step protection?"

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harleyfiremedic
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What is "three-step protection?"

Post by harleyfiremedic » Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:33 am

While listening to the scanner while fanning, I hear the phrase "three step". Now I know this is when the conductor is coupling/uncoupling cars in the yard, but what does it really mean?

Thanks all

DutchRailnut
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Re: Operation question

Post by DutchRailnut » Wed Sep 24, 2008 10:21 am

step one= Brakes set
step two = reverser centered
step three = Generator field off.

all will prevent movement of train, so a person can go under or betweeen cars.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

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scooterz66
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Re: Operation question

Post by scooterz66 » Thu Sep 25, 2008 1:20 am

And it's not just in the yard. Anytime that the plane of the train is broken, closing angle cocks, hanging an eot, setting or releasing hand brakes, the conductor MUST get 3 step. And the engineer can't release 3 step until the conductor tells him to and that he is in the clear.

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GOLDEN-ARM
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Re: Operation question

Post by GOLDEN-ARM » Thu Sep 25, 2008 1:58 am

If he was listening to Amtrak, the steps would look like this:
Step one: brakes applied, movement fully stopped
Step two: reverser centered (possibly removed)
Step three: HEP shut down, verified on IFD/control panel

The gen field doesn't apply on Amtrak........ :wink:

BoilerBob
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Re: Operation question

Post by BoilerBob » Sun Sep 28, 2008 7:59 am

What is meant by generator field off and HEP shut down?
Bob

DutchRailnut
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Re: Operation question

Post by DutchRailnut » Sun Sep 28, 2008 8:13 am

Generator field is control switch for propulsion circuit, with it down the train cant move, if brakes are also set.
The HEP is shut down so person who has to go between cars would not get blasted by a chaffed cable carrying 480 volt AC.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

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gp9rm4108
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by gp9rm4108 » Sat Oct 18, 2008 2:30 pm

3 step protection is something that CN does not have and I find to be overkill.

scooterz66
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by scooterz66 » Sat Oct 18, 2008 6:11 pm

gp9rm4108 wrote:3 step protection is something that CN does not have and I find to be overkill.
Till your engineer starts moving the train with you between the cars.

Rockin' Roller

Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by Rockin' Roller » Sat Oct 18, 2008 8:40 pm

CN and UP just don't shut off the generator field. They are just "set and centered."

gp9rm4108
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by gp9rm4108 » Sun Oct 19, 2008 10:07 pm

CN doesn't even have set and centred. Cndr just says that'll do I'm cuttin' em in.

DutchRailnut
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by DutchRailnut » Mon Oct 20, 2008 7:31 am

please note that north of the Canuck border the FRA rules no longer apply.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

Retired Triebfahrzeugführer. I am not a moderator.

Rockin' Roller

Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by Rockin' Roller » Mon Oct 20, 2008 10:29 pm

gp9rm4108 wrote:CN doesn't even have set and centred. Cndr just says that'll do I'm cuttin' em in.
It must be a Canadian thing, because down here you tell the engineer you need to go between and they tell you set and centered.

lbshelby
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by lbshelby » Mon Oct 20, 2008 10:47 pm

It depends on what railroad you are on and what rulebook they use, as well as what their safety personnel dictate.

All US railroads *must* comply with SOFA rules, which includes verifying that the reverser is centered and the brakes are set before any person goes in between cars. The methods vary. Some roads allow a visual acknowledgement of a hand sign, some allow an acknowledgement of a hand or lantern sign with a whistle signal. Others require a verbal interchange over the radio. The method varies, the meanings and purposes are the same.

"Three step protection" is one of a number of ways to do it. UP uses "Red Zone". Other carriers still use "in-between" responded to with "set and centered". I do agree that "three step" is overkill, as some places were teaching it as "conductor requesting three step protection" with a response of "three step protection is applied". I swear some of the younger managers/trainers just don't understand what "radio overload" is. Yet.
Last edited by lbshelby on Wed Oct 29, 2008 2:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Engineer Spike
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by Engineer Spike » Tue Oct 28, 2008 10:57 am

3 point is used in Canada. I work on the D&H, and I am on run into ST. Luc yard. It is used. When a carknocker is involved it is 3 point plus remove the reverser handle.

Hoosier Joe
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Re: What is "three-step protection?"

Post by Hoosier Joe » Mon Nov 03, 2008 8:04 pm

"Brakes set" does that mean the train brake or just the independent brake ? Joe

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