Technical Reports

Passenger Rail Train to Train Impact Test: Test Procedures, Instrumentation, and Data

  • 01
  • Oct
  • 2003
AUTHOR: Federal Railroad Administration
OFFICE: RPD
SUBOFFICE: RPD-30
REPORT NUMBER: DOT/FRA/ORD-03/17.III
KEYWORDS: Impact test; energy absorption; train collisions; railway accidents; crashworthiness testing of railway vehicles; commuter rail passenger car; computational and kinematic models; crash dynamics
ABSTRACT: A full-scale passenger rail train-to-train impact test was performed on January 31, 2002, at the Transportation Technology Center, Pueblo, Colorado. The actual speed of impact, as measured by the laser speed trap, was 29.9 mph resulting in a large amount of damage to the leading cab-car, which climbed up onto the nose of the locomotive at an angle of about 20 degrees and then fell off to one side. The end-frame of the cab-car became separated from the center sill, with about 1/2 the length of the cab-car being crushed. There was very little damage to the trailing passenger cars although all of them were derailed during the impact. The nose of the locomotive received very little damage but the roof and windshield of the locomotive received some superficial damage. The locomotive and hopper cars were also derailed during the impact.

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