Assessment and improvement of safety at finnish railway-road grade crossings

Veli-Pekka Kallberg, Matti Anila, Kirsi Pajunen, Mikko Kallio, Jouni Hytönen

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    2 Citations (Scopus)


    A method for determining whether the safety of a railway–road grade crossing is reasonable was assessed by examining the results of its application to 360 Finnish grade crossings. Safety was considered reasonable if the conditions at the grade crossing were such that road users have available all the information necessary for safe crossing. At passive grade crossings, this condition is usually met when a road vehicle can cross the railway in less time than it takes for a train to arrive at the crossing from the farthest point at which the road user can see it. In the application of the method, crossing times for a car, a truck, and a trailer truck were calculated with an advanced vehicle-movement simulation model, taking into account the gradient of the road. These times were frequently too short. In such cases, measures for quick implementation were suggested. Most frequently these measures concerned clearing of sight-restricting vegetation, improving the vertical profile of the road, banning long vehicles from using the grade crossing, and reducing the speed limit of trains. Vehicle type-specific bans and reduced speed limits can usually be removed later if the crossing is equipped with barriers.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)54-60
    JournalTransportation Research Record
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2002
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


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