assenger safety is of the utmost importance to the rail industry. All rail operators are keen to avoid accidents that result in passengers being trapped, injured or killed.
Over the years, many devices have been developed to reduce the risk of an accident, but none have had as much impact as these three.
Internal and External Automatic Doors
Automatic external doors help to ensure the safety of passengers by keeping them inside the train while it is in motion. These doors close automatically before the train starts to move, eliminating the risk of passengers or luggage falling out of the train through an open door. Meanwhile, internal doors separate the carriages of the train, helping all passengers to have a comfortable journey.
Compared to manually operated doors, automatic doors offer many safety benefits. The best automatic doors can detect when they are closing on a person and spring back open again to avoid causing a crushing injury. Compared to manual doors, they also reduce the risk of a passenger getting their hand trapped in the door while trying to operate a hinge or handle.
Platform Screen Doors
Rail platforms are arguably the most dangerous parts of the railway network. A passenger who falls or jumps onto the tracks can easily be killed by an approaching train. Platform screen doors block passenger access to the tracks, opening only when a train has pulled into the station and is ready to receive passengers. These doors not only prevent accidental rail deaths, but also reduce the number of people using the railway as a means of committing suicide. A study in South Korea showed that installing full-height platform screen doors is an effective way of reducing subway suicide.
Emergency Brake Handles
When an emergency occurs, it is vital that railway employees or passengers are able to stop a train quickly. Emergency brake handles provide an easy way of halting a train. Imposing fines for the misuse of these handles ensures that passengers have a way of controlling the train in an emergency while discouraging misuse of the handles in a way that could interfere with the efficient operation of the rail network.