Technical Reports

Extreme Conditions Impact on rapid Transit Systems: Effect on Automatic Train Control

  • 01
  • Dec
  • 1982
AUTHOR: M. Muradaz, G. Mouchchoir, A. Yen
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: TR-82-05
SUBJECT: Emergency Preparedness
KEYWORDS: Automatic Train Control, Emergency Evacuation, Environmental Conditions, Fires, Overloading, Rapid Transit Systems, Safety
ABSTRACT: Automatic Train Control (ATC) has gained wide acceptance and is presently used in all aspects of rapid rail operations. Because ATC has a limited range of detection, conditions outside those limits might present hazards to transit system operation. With a trend toward less human involvement in the actual operation of rapid rail vehicles, questions have been raised about train safety under ATC failures and especially under extreme environmental conditions. This report examines the impact of extreme environmental conditions and ATC failures on rapid rail system safety and makes recommendations to lessen their impact. The environmental conditions covered in the report are: high winds; floods; lightning; heavy ice and snow; and sub-freezing temperatures. Fires and emergency evacuation procedures were analyzed in this investigation and recommendations were developed to lessen the consequences of fires and to expedite passenger evacuation procedures. Overloading, a situation frequently faced by rapid rail transit properties, was also examined to determine its impact on train safety and operation.

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