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Engineering Group welcomes new OLE training plan Monday October 10, 2022

A “hugely beneficial” plan to develop a training package on overhead line equipment (OLE) has been welcomed by members of the UKTram Engineering Group.

Organised to coincide with UKTram’s annual summit, which was held this year at the Manchester Chamber of Commerce building, the group’s September meeting was well attended by engineers from across the sector.

As well as discussing the potential of the training package to support the sector in raising levels of OLE competence, the group also welcomed UKTram’s recently-appointed Lead Engineer, Phil Terry, while Tony Marsden of Blackpool Tram took up the position of Vice-Chairman of the Group.

Following the meeting, Phil said: “Members saw the plan as hugely beneficial to Light Rail and we look forward to its further development over coming months.

“The September meeting also generated the highest turn-out of the year for what is already a well-attended group. Almost all of those taking part attended in person, with the remainder dialling in online.

“The gathering also gave an opportunity, after the flurry of guidance documents developed by LRSSB over the past year, for members to give feedback on their impact and discuss how this process can be further refined going forward.”

Other topics included the need to further explore the asset management aspect of light rail and to formulate a working group to share best practice. There were also further discussions and updates on UKTram’s rail renewals research project.

Two Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) reports were also put under the spotlight, with members considering the implications for the design of tram/highway interfaces.

Also highlighted was a recent trap-and-drag incident and members debated whether there should be an industry-wide remit for a project to explore improved object-detection.

Members also discussed whether further research was required into potential track defects following the detection of a fault on one network which could yet prove to be a ‘one off’ or a sector-wider issue.