Locomotive cab occupant protection

Locomotive cab occupant protection

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  • Alternative Title:
    Proceedings of the 2003 International Mechanical Engineering Congress & Exposition
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  • Abstract:
    The effectiveness of fitting a locomotive cab with a passive inflatable restraint system utilizing inflatable structures, and interior padding to protect the operator has been evaluated for the in-line collision scenario. It is a challenge to design a system that increases protection for the locomotive operator within the cab during accidents, while allowing that operator to react to a specific situation by choosing either to leave or remain in the seat or cab. Numerous strategies have been proposed to increase locomotive cab occupant protection; however, most of these proposals have either required an active response from the cab occupants, e.g., getting into a refuge, or inhibited the potential for fleeing the cab, e.g., seatbelts. In this study, the occupant protection of a typical locomotive cab interior with a vertical console-stand style control is compared with the occupant protection of an interior modified with the addition of two tube-shaped inflatable structures for secondary impact injury mitigation. The crashworthiness performances of these two interior arrangements are compared for in-line train-to-train collision scenarios that approximate a locomotive-led train collision with another locomotive or cab car-led train. The analysis uses, as a basis, accident data and information on the crashworthiness performance of the locomotive interior in a train-to-train collision between a standing locomotive-led consist and a moving cab car-led consist conducted on January 31, 2002 at the Transportation Technology Center in Pueblo, Colorado. An analysis model is developed and validated using the full-scale train-to-train test locomotive interior/occupant experiment. The interior/occupant model then serves as a means of interpolating to different crash pulses, and with the alternative protection method using inflatable tube-like structures and interior padding. A range of locomotive operator sizes is investigated, as well as a range of selected initial seating positions for the locomotive operator.
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