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Customer behavior relative to gap between platform and train : final report, July 2009.
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    NTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-Rail SafetyNTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-Rail Planning and Policy ; NTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-High Speed Ground Transportation ;
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  • Abstract:
    Managing gap safety at the train platform interface has been an on-going concern for passenger

    rail systems. The major questions this research seeks to answer are what customer behaviors are

    associated with the risk of gap injury incidents and what are potential ways to reduce these

    behavioral risks. To answer these questions, the research approach is two pronged. The first

    prong analyzes and reviews the NJ TRANSIT Rail accident data and reports to gain a clear picture

    of the accidents in relation to demographic, seasonal, and temporal characteristics. The second

    prong involves observational studies of passengers boarding trains to identify behavioral patterns

    that are associated with risk of gap accidents.

    An analysis of gap injuries on NJ TRANSIT Rail found that for 2005 to 2008, gap injuries accounted

    for 25 percent of passenger injuries on NJ TRANSIT Rail. The majority of gap injuries occur during

    the AM and PM peak periods. For gap injuries the percent of injuries peaks for the very young,

    under 10 years old. For both gap and non-gap injuries, the majority of the injured were women.

    Sixty-six percent of gap injuries occurred while passengers were boarding. The study indicates that

    young children were particularly vulnerable to gap injuries while detraining. Seventy-eight percent

    of detraining passengers and 88 percent of boarding passengers were observed to look down while

    detraining or boarding. Based on the analysis of the data, recommendations on strategies for

    reducing gap accidents include additional Passenger Information, Platform and Train Treatments,

    Training and Public Awareness Campaign.

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