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Crown Internationals Gantry Pole

Crown supports rail engineers to improve safety

Thursday, May 4th, 2017

Crown International, which manufactures innovative road and rail-side safety equipment, has completed a training programme for Network Rail to help its team manage the maintenance of gantry poles across its network.

The business has over 400 gantry poles in use across the UK rail network, the majority of which can be found along the West Coast Mainline.

The gantry poles use a unique, counterbalanced design to give the train driver a clearer sighting of the signal while allowing the pole to be wound up to the gantry for easy maintenance and cleaning.

Mark Stacey, managing director of Crown International, said: “The poles were designed specifically for Network Rail and have proved particularly popular across the network.

“Like many of our products, they were designed with ease of maintenance in mind, and contain a number of safety features to protect personnel during maintenance procedures.

“The training involved more than 40 of Network Rail’s in-house maintenance team, bringing them up to speed with how the equipment works to make sure they are equipped to manage the maintenance of the signals safely and with minimum disruption to passengers and operators.”

Crown’s gantry pole uses a special mounting bracket that has a number of location points, allowing the height to be adjusted vertically to achieve the ground to signal head clearance required for easy signal sighting. A chain and sprocket and counterbalance weights ensure that minimum effort is required to raise or lower the signal head into position, and a door allows access to the counterbalance mechanism. When this is fully closed and locked after maintenance, it ensures the signal head remains in its fully lowered operation position.

Mark continued: “With network upgrades underway across the country, the biggest challenge facing rail operators is delivering upgrades and maintenance services in a safe and efficient manner, without disrupting what is a tightly-scheduled service. Not only does the Crown gantry pole enable Network Rail’s maintenance teams to provide regular signal maintenance with minimal disruption to services, but it is also designed to allow new gantries to be installed behind existing signals, allowing a smooth transition between the old and new signal equipment.”