Friday 12 Jun 2020
New West Midlands training facilities help develop future railway signallers
New training facilities have opened in the West Midlands to train railway staff to keep the rail network running safely.
The signalling simulators, which reflect real-life scenarios faced on the railway every day, have been installed at Walsall training centre and Birmingham’s New Street signal box. They are already being used to deliver Network Rail’s 12-week signaller training for new recruits and refresher training for current staff.
The facilities in Network Rail’s North West and Central region were completed ahead of schedule to increase the region’s signaller resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, working with Hitachi Information Control Systems (HICSE).
The operational simulator replicates the type of incidents and experiences that signallers would face on the railway, giving delegates the opportunity to get hands-on, practical experience to test their reactions in a safe environment.
Martin Colmey, head of operations for Central route, said: “This is an invaluable facility which will train hundreds of future signallers who will help to keep the railway safe and operational for millions of passengers in future.
“The simulator means our trainees can learn everything they need to know to confidently run the railway in a safe environment. The fact we can use it now to provide resilience during the ongoing coronavirus crisis is another success from this investment.”
Tim Gray, Managing Director of HICSE said: “I am really pleased that Hitachi have been able to help Network Rail in keeping the UK railways running for key workers and freight customers and to provide a new training facility for future resilience. This was as brilliant collaboration and I’m grateful for the dedication and innovation shown by the HICSE staff who were involved”
To find out more about Network Rail’s training, please visit https://www.networkrail-training.co.uk/.
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About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Usually, there are almost five million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.