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Potential scenarios of concern for high speed rail operations
  • Published Date:
    2011-03-16
  • Language:
    English
Filetype[PDF-945.52 KB]


Details:
  • Publication/ Report Number:
    JRC2011-56074
  • Resource Type:
  • NTL Classification:
    NTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-High Speed Ground Transportation ; NTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-RAIL TRANSPORTATION ; NTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-Rail Planning and PolicyNTL-RAIL TRANSPORTATION-Rail Safety ; NTL-SAFETY AND SECURITY-Rail Safety ;
  • Format:
  • Abstract:
    Currently, multiple operating authorities are proposing the

    introduction of high-speed rail service in the United States.

    While high-speed rail service shares a number of basic

    principles with conventional-speed rail service, the operational

    requirements on a high-speed rail system are typically more

    demanding than those for conventional-speed operations. The

    operating environment will require specialized maintenance

    and inspection procedures, enhanced protection or gradeseparation

    of highway-rail crossings, effective separation of

    other rail traffic, and detection of potential hazards along the

    track to help ensure the safety of the system. With the required

    implementation of positive train control (PTC) by passengercarrying

    rail operators, the frequency and/or severity of several

    types of railroad accidents can be decreased. While all of these

    measures will contribute to the overall system safety, incidents

    that pose a threat to passenger and crew safety may still occur

    that cannot be prevented through the design of the operating

    environment alone. It is important to consider these types of

    incidents when selecting the rail vehicles for use in a particular

    operation, and include appropriate crashworthiness and

    occupant protection measures.

    This paper presents a series of example scenarios of some of

    the potential hazards that may affect the safe operation of highspeed

    passenger trains in the United States. These situations

    are drawn from actual accidents that have occurred in the U.S.

    and abroad. The scenarios provide a starting point for

    discussing system safety features, which includes vehicle

    crashworthiness and occupant protection features.

    As an operating environment may be designed to limit the

    likelihood of certain types of incidents from occurring, three

    different hypothetical high-speed operating environments are

    discussed in this paper. While the number of potential

    scenarios varies with each operating environment, in all

    environments it is important to consider the need for a train’s

    crashworthiness features to mitigate the consequences of

    potential incidents.

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