Level Crossing Timer

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by frequent flyer, 7 Nov 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. frequent flyer

    frequent flyer New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Joined:
    16 Sep 2011
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    In some European cities I have visited traffic lights have count down timers that tell drivers how long they have to wait until the lights turn from red to green. Do you think a similar thing could be used at level crossing barriers so drivers would know how long they have to wait until the barriers lift? I'm guessing it might stop a few impatient people trying their luck.
     
  2. Registered users do not see these banners - join or log in today!

    Rail Forums

     
  3. ainsworth74

    ainsworth74 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    18,345
    Joined:
    16 Nov 2009
    Location:
    Redcar
    I think it would do the exact opposite, if a driver pulls up to a level crossing and sees that there is a minute or even just 20 seconds or so until the barriers go up then I think that would encourage them to cross.
     
  4. silvermachine

    silvermachine Member

    Messages:
    42
    Joined:
    18 Feb 2010
    another reason why this would be a dangerous thing to implement is that a timer could only give you the time before a single train has cleared the crossing.

    If a second train in the other direction strikes in before the first train has cleared then the timer would be counting down to zero while a train was still approaching or, more likely, would reset to a new value probably annoying those who are waiting, who might then be more likely to make a risky effort to cross.

    and thats only with 2 lines, never mind 3 or 4.
     
  5. 90019

    90019 Established Member

    Messages:
    6,497
    Joined:
    29 May 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh/Leeds
    On top of the safety aspects, it also can't take into account different speeds and acceleration/decelertion of trains approacing, meaning the predicted time would keep changing.
    The pededstrian crossong ones work because they're on a set sequence, and the time is predetermined, the times a level crossing would be down for fluctuates too much for it to be effective.
     
    Last edited: 7 Nov 2011
  6. 142094

    142094 Established Member

    Messages:
    8,770
    Joined:
    7 Nov 2009
    Location:
    Newcastle
    That is a good point, but of course depends on the temprament of the driver.

    Best thing to do is have a a deterrent (full width barrier) and a punishment (CCTV with ANPR or similar) to reduce the numbers who'd either chance it or would consider driving round the barrier on a half-barriered crossing.
     
  7. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

    Messages:
    6,818
    Joined:
    28 Sep 2010
    Best thing is to have no crossing at all!
     
  8. 142094

    142094 Established Member

    Messages:
    8,770
    Joined:
    7 Nov 2009
    Location:
    Newcastle
    Most probably (unless something like what happened at Great Heck was repeated) - however much easier and cheaper to but in two extra barriers and CCTV compared to the cost of a bridge etc.
     
  9. NSEFAN

    NSEFAN Established Member

    Messages:
    3,105
    Joined:
    17 Jun 2007
    Location:
    Southampton
    Exactly. My understanding is that network rail will do all they can to axe crossings during major engineering works.
     
  10. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

    Messages:
    6,818
    Joined:
    28 Sep 2010
    Easier, yes. Cheaper - no in most cases, not when whole life costs taken into account. Full barrier crossings are cmpletely different behind the scenes so to speak and upgradign an AHB to full barrier CCTV costs well over £1m.
     
  11. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

    Messages:
    11,506
    Joined:
    13 May 2008
    Can I use this space for another moan about Granham Road crossing, south of Cambridge/just north of of Shelford railway station? Sits just south of the junction between the Kings Cross and Liverpool Street routes. Often I've sat for over five minutes with nary a sign of a train. This evening was one of the special occasions where I got to watch a southbound train take the line towards Shepreth- meaning that despite there being no clear route through the crossing, the barriers were down. Joy.
     
  12. 142094

    142094 Established Member

    Messages:
    8,770
    Joined:
    7 Nov 2009
    Location:
    Newcastle
    I'd be very suprised if installing barriers is more expensive than hard engineering such as bridge or flyover, even if looking at the whole life costs.
     
  13. Bald Rick

    Bald Rick Established Member

    Messages:
    6,818
    Joined:
    28 Sep 2010
    Be surprised then ! The £worth of time savings for motorists can be substantial.

    The only reason it isn't happening is that there is no money.
     
  14. frequent flyer

    frequent flyer New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Joined:
    16 Sep 2011
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    Getting rid of the crossing all together is the best solution by far for everyone, I have to agree. I guess there are huge variables at a crossing that would make the countdown unreliable, but unfortunitely there are a few impatient drivers on the road and perhaps letting them know they've got either 30 seconds of 5 minutes to wait might stop their blood pressure rising, seeing red and driving round the barrier. When a train is delayed its far less stressful when you know by how much than when no time is given.
     
  15. 142094

    142094 Established Member

    Messages:
    8,770
    Joined:
    7 Nov 2009
    Location:
    Newcastle
    Take that out of the equation then you'll find the opposite I bet. Even the small benefit to road users in this case would be greatly outweighed by the cost of congestion not caused by level crossings (which has been put at about £20bn per annum by the CBI).
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page