This paper presents considerations regarding conventional signal systems that should be helpful to people planning a light-rail system. Attention is first directed to establishing the need for a signal system, including a discussion of its advantages and disadvantages on the basis of the technical, operational, economic, labor, and regulatory elements involved. A definition of conventional signal systems is provided, and the various types of systems are explained on the basis of their capabilities. Safety and failure modes are addressed as the key issues in any signal-system design. To illustrate the importance of all these factors, a comprehensive description of the new San Francisco Municipal Railway's subway signal system is presented, and conclusions are then drawn as to the general design concepts required for other future light-rail systems. /Author/

  • Record URL:
  • Availability:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. This paper appeared in TRB Special Report No. 182, Light-Rail Transit: Planning and Technology.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board (TRB)

    Washington, DC   
  • Authors:
    • Burgin, Edward A
  • Publication Date: 1978

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Pagination: pp 119-123
  • Monograph Title: Light rail transit: planning and technology
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00301318
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Oct 17 1981 12:00AM