Stop and examine

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The Stop and Examine rule [1] was a United Kingdom Rulebook rule which applied on the former British Railways. It required the traincrew to stop a train and investigate the cause if they became aware of any unusual conditions which might endanger the safety of the train .

The Stop and Examine rule was made defunct after the privatisation of the railway, when the modular format rulebook was introduced. Rules are no longer given names, but instead are referred to by their location within the rulebook. In this instance it is Module TW1 (Preparation and movement of trains) which states:[2]

43.3 When your train is put in danger

If you become aware of something which could put the safety of your train in danger, you must stop your train as soon as possible.

You must, if possible, avoid stopping the train:

  • on a viaduct
  • in a tunnel
  • in any other place where it might be difficult to deal with the emergency.

(Guard) - You must tell the driver why you have stopped the train.


In the Norton Fitzwarren rail crash (1940), the stop and examine rule was applied, but no problem found.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ le Vay, Benedict, "Britain from the Rails: A Window Gazer's Guide", Bradt Travel Guides, 2009. Cf. p.127. "Under the 'stop-and-examine' rule, he applied the brake and the train halted perhaps half a mile further on".
  2. ^ "Rulebook Master: Module TW1. Section 43.3 "When your train is put in danger"" (pdf). Network Rail. Retrieved 2017-04-12. 

Further reading[edit]