Grant talked to us on 24 July. He comes from a ‘railway family’ – in all, he and other family members worked on the Tasmanian rail system for a total of 136 years!
Grant’s lengthy railway service enabled him to experience the changes in management style, from the early days when ‘you could get away with anything’ to nowadays, where everything is laid down in great detail and woe betide you if you don’t follow the rules – which is how it must be to avoid litigation.
Grant was asked if he had killed anyone. He replied “No”, but he had had several “messy” incidents, which clearly still trouble him today. He decided to voluntarily visit schools and talk to Year Ten classes about the dangers of rail crossings. Those students would soon have driving licences, he said, and he felt it was important to impress on them what to look out for near rail crossings.
What about suicides? Grant described one incident where he managed to stop his engine just feet away from a man standing unflinchingly in the middle of the train track.
For the last ten years Grant was TasRail’s chief trainer of new drivers, a position that gave him much satisfaction.
Grant was thanked by acclimation.
[At right, Grant is shown with his book A Train Driver’s Story. ]