Stealing A Locomotive Address
Digitrax systems do not allow more than one user to select and run the same locomotive address unless the loco is “stolen” (or shared) by the new user. When an address is receiving commands from more than one throttle, it may seem to be out of control.
Stealing is a safety interlock that prevents operators from automatically taking control of locos that are already selected and being run on another throttle. Occasionally you may need to override this interlock to gain control of a loco. This override is called stealing and will result in having a single loco address selected on two different throttles at the same time.
For example, if you are running a train on a particular loco address at 25% throttle and another operator is running the same loco address but sending a stop command you will see the train stop unexpectedly. From your perspective, the train is not behaving correctly so you would probably increase your throttle setting and the train would begin moving again. From the other operators perspective, the train is moving again so it is not responding to his/her commands.
Since the other operator wants to stop the train, they are likely to send the command again since the train is now moving again. As you can see, having two engineers on the same train can give strange operations. For this reason, Digitrax interlocks locomotive selection so that you can’t take control of a loco that is already selected on another throttle without “stealing” the address.