Passenger Protection in Rail Transit Vehicles

Statistically, light rail systems have higher injury rates on a per passenger-mile basis than heavy rail and commuter rail, because light rail transit systems in most cities operate on city streets with at-grade crossings. Occupants can be injured or killed as a result of two main mechanisms that arise from the sudden acceleration or deceleration of a vehicle, or because of a mechanical damage to the vehicle structure. These can arise from: (1) Primary collision of the vehicle against another vehicle or obstacle, and (2) Secondary impacts between the occupant and the interior of the vehicle at some time following the initiation of the primary collision. This research is expected to identify the injury mechanisms to LRV passengers and to propose future areas of research that will lay the foundations necessary to generate transit rail vehicle interior design guidelines that will enhance the level of safety to passengers during collisions. The objective of this rsearch project is to identify the injury mechanisms to Light Rail Vehicle (LRV) passengers and generate transit rail vehicle interior design guidelines that will enhance the level of safety to passengers during collisions.