Node request - Leading Car Number

Would it be possible to expose the leading car number on tube trains? It is currently impossible to accurately track a single train as the set number changes if the train is reformed.

Many thanks.

Is the “Train No” in the Working timetable what you are after?

No sorry. I’m after the leading car number, which is the true unique identifier of a physical train. The Train No in the timetable, which is already available as vehicleId, isn’t reliable. For example the controller might change Train No 313 into train 320 in order to recover the service. I’m trying to monitor the location of a specific train.

I know with the National Rail services this information isn’t easy to get: it is the depots that match the units onto the allocated service (nominally using the headcode but these get reused during the day).

A wild stab in the dark that the message “check destination on front of train” suggests that the information you seek might not be yet available.

What are you intending to use it for?

What are you intending to use it for?

I run an app for drivers who use it to see where their next train currently is. I know the leading car information is available on the internal facing systems and was hoping it could be made available on the public API.

The leading car number (LCN) is available within the TfL TrackerNet system, which I believe is the underlying source of data for the public API. I suspect it’s not exposed because, on some lines, it’s pretty unreliable. As more lines become computerised then maybe that will change.