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System rule: do not route a train down a single track without asking for clearance


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We have had plenty of lockups around Sosnowiec Główny and Sosnowiec Południowy to come to the conclusion that rookie dispatcher keep stuffing trains down a single track irrespective of clearance. I think we need a system rule that prevents setting a route to such a single track without having obtained clearance first from the other dispatcher. Hopefully this will prevent a lockups, at least it'll teach rookies how single line operation should work.

The system rule message must be descriptive enough to ensure people understand what they have done wrong and how to correctly proceed.

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As far as I know once you electronically request a signal and the AI accepts it becomes binding.  In other words if you accepted a train you have to wait for that train to arrive and indicate that it has arrived for the blocking to become available.  I know there are overrides for this but I find a verbal request is actually not necessary in chat to an AI dispatcher.

Thanks

Sean

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According to the Ir-1 instruction manual:

Quote

Instrukcja o prowadzeniu ruchu pociągów Ir-1
§ 23 Zasady zapowiadania pociągów
3. Przy prowadzeniu ruchu jednotorowego dwukierunkowego dyżurny ruchu posterunku zapowiadawczego wyprawiający pociągi żąda pozwolenia na wyprawienie każdego pociągu, a dyżurny ruchu posterunku zapowiadawczego przyjmujący pociągi daje pozwolenie na wyprawienie każdego pociągu (§ 24 ust. 8-9).

So there. 😁

Well according to Google it translates as:

Quote

In the case of single-track, two-way traffic, the signaller of the announcing post dispatching trains requests permission to dispatch each train, and the signaller of the announcing post receiving trains gives permission to dispatch each train (§ 24 sections 8-9).

§ 24 sections 8-9 are the telephone instructions that go with it. See https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1g-uorn6BElwUeoPNBQ-GZ-z9GR6mE9Y2l46X8VIvZZA/edit

SimRail is a consumer version of the SimKol training simulator so every regulation is taken / implemented literally.

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I'm not going to read the link.  I'm just curious if it's electronically interlocked or not.  Most single track signal systems with dispatching at either end would be interlocked.  I remember seeing the term relay in another post here recently describing the difference interlockings.

If there is a relay, they are in place to protect any routing against the flow of traffic that as is set without acceptance.  Like I said I haven't read it but I believe the telephone procedure is a formality to give a dispatcher a heads up that they can request this and be prepared to accept it or advise them it's not possible for whatever reason.

Thanks

Sean

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As I read Ir-1, the usage of telephone is mandatory to control the traffic flow (for at least single track operation). The usage of the interlocks is only to ensure safety but not traffic flow. It is not deemed a mere formality hence my suggestion to have the system rule.

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On 1/24/2023 at 1:32 PM, Skully said:

According to the Ir-1 instruction manual:

So there. 😁

Well according to Google it translates as:

§ 24 sections 8-9 are the telephone instructions that go with it. See https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1g-uorn6BElwUeoPNBQ-GZ-z9GR6mE9Y2l46X8VIvZZA/edit

SimRail is a consumer version of the SimKol training simulator so every regulation is taken / implemented literally.

Setting the junction in the computer is technically asking permission.  The AI accepts it.  So if an AI asks, and an AI accepts...

 

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22 hours ago, Cyclone said:

Setting the junction in the computer is technically asking permission.  The AI accepts it.  So if an AI asks, and an AI accepts...

It's not. Requesting direction of the lineblock is explicitly to set the direction in the interlocking. It has nothing to do with the trains running. You may have gotten the direction accepted, but you have still not agreed at all on which train is coming if any. The other station can simply just reverse the direction again.

The question of coordinating which train is coming is maybe not so obvious in Poludniowy. But at a station like Kazimierz it will be really important.

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23 hours ago, lund456 said:

But at a station like Kazimierz it will be really important.

And at that station there are blocks similar as the one that happens in Poludniowy WITHOUT any player being involved (only AI-stations) and I hope the AI is following protocols if we should.

And devs have also said that block happens even when players have asked and gotten permission.

So this isn't solved by forcing players to follow protocols. Because then it would not happen at Kazimierz where AI is the only one that have access to sending trains down the single track. And if the AI sends a train because a player sent it without seeing if it can be sent then it is AI, not player, that is the problem.
 

(And yes I i know that some people blame players for Kazimierz as well but if players are to blame for everything that happens at AI-only stations, then why is the game in Early Access if its not for testing and finding errors?)


And yes: Players also make errors (I have to say that since some people thinks that "Players are not always to blame" means that i say "AI is always to blame"). But players making errors isn't solved by forcing them to do something that isn't solving the issue.

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OK lets be clear on someting.  The AI has an advantage in that it actually knows what train is heading their direction.  If you look carefully at the trains in an area you will see the semaphore and the signal indication.  That being said despite being protocol for a reason, the AI system WILL accept a block and WILL NOT take it away from you because they have to request it electronically through the interlocking first.  As far as a player to player signal box if not a protocol a verbal understanding is required and can help. 

Thanks

Sean

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1 hour ago, SurvivorSean said:

OK lets be clear on someting.  The AI has an advantage in that it actually knows what train is heading their direction.  If you look carefully at the trains in an area you will see the semaphore and the signal indication.  That being said despite being protocol for a reason, the AI system WILL accept a block and WILL NOT take it away from you because they have to request it electronically through the interlocking first.  As far as a player to player signal box if not a protocol a verbal understanding is required and can help. 

Thanks

Sean

Problem is that it doesn't
Have seen Kazimierz happily accepting a train from adjacent station while having two trains in the station. That has two tracks. And both of these heading towards the other train.
And then if you manage to remove one of the trains at the platform, then what does the AI do? Of course accept train to fill up the track with a new train heading towards the train on the single line. And this has happened not just once. It also happens at Poludniowy as it accepts trains from Dandówka to its already full station.
So the problem is that the AI does not know or for some reason does not care.

But it does know in the way that it asks the next station before the train approaches in some cases. But in some case it doesn't know or don't care

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Yeah I was noticing while running SG tonight the cornfield meet as I brought a train around the bend.

So I'm trying to understand something because I have been on the beiner server and it seems to be running fine and has plenty of players.  What I do like in one of the previous updates was the AI asking what train just left.  So it enforces the procedure of verbally advising of the train.

What needs to happen is a logic issue.  If SG is electronically letting me send a train around the bend (I think it screwed things up as well on that server) then it should put a similar restriction where it DOESN'T accept a train that has no track available.  It also has to apply that same logic to the AI handshaking if SG is under AI control.

The rule of thumb for dispatching an entire mainline is clearing a train every 15 minutes for 30 minutes of track to a point where the direction of the opposite track is capable of receiving a train in the opposite direction.  The overlap is a check sum method that I use in order to create redundancy in dispatching and avoid cornfield meets.  Of course my example here is for North America dispatching (so while some things apply as far as track open and opposing movements) obviously you can only control one tower and set it up accordingly.

The AI from what I've witnessed will refuse a request for single track verbally (I guess I should be doing this moving forward).  It should also NOT blindly accept anything without this verbal request.  In other words that is what the procedure says, so the AI needs to go by it and have a command line option "what train are you looking to send?".  This also has to be checked by AI to AI signal boxes regardless of the schedule.  Schedule should only be used for priority purposes in dispatching not preventing cornfield meets.

For those that do not know a cornfield meet is when a train faces one another at a red signal on single track.  It can also be used when more than 1 track is blocked and there is no exit available because both tracks have opposing trains (or 1 train needs a particular track that is occupied in the opposite direction).

Thanks

Sean

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The AI is still flawed, yet it will tell you if track is available or not if you ask for it.

image.png.5dca8cbd81bcc461998eb3437def12ca.png

To find those flaws we need to ensure proper procedure (https://tutorials.simrail.eu/index-en.html#section30) is used.

Quote

When dispatching on the semi-automatic interlock, you need to use end- and starting blocks, as well as to communicate with your neighboring dispatcher in order to agree if the line is clear.

But as long as players (admittingly) do not use proper procedure then flaws can not be unequivocally be attributed to the AI.

Even on a layout as "SG - SP - SK - DGS - DGZ" you can easily create a scenario in which it would appear SK made the foul while in actuality it would have been SG.

image.png.aa3377d11df89bea5bd2dd238fe208f1.png

So in order to find those AI flaws every external influence needs to be contained, hence the suggestion of the system rule.

Edited by Skully
Improved diagram
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