For many years, railways used signalling 95% for safety and 5% for operations or management; today, the proportions of these two uses are roughly equal. Railway signalling is now being integrated, not only electronically but also in terms of railway control and management. Safety still plays a central part in the future of railway management, so that positive help must be given to train drivers. Signal box staff have various devices to prevent them from making errors, but control of traction as well as signalling has not yet been applied very often. Visual display units have begun to supersede the large geographical control panels of major signal boxes. For a long time, US railways have been turning their signal boxes into control centres, which contribute to managing railways by centralised train control (CTC). Some form of management centre is needed to turn signalling into a tool for managing a railway system; for example, Railtrack intends to create six to eight such centres for the whole UK rail network. Such centres can operate the track effectively and efficiently, and integrate operational functions. Many countries have automatic train protection (ATP) systems, which help train drivers. There is a good future for systems like the European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS), with which ATP must be interoperable.

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Ian Allan Publishing, Limited

    Riverdene Business Park, Riverdene Industrial Estate
    Molesey Road
    Walton-on-Tham, Surrey  United Kingdom  KT12 4RG
  • Authors:
    • HOWKER, A
  • Publication Date: 1999-5


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 348-50
  • Serial:
    • Volume: 56
    • Issue Number: 608
    • Publisher: Ian Allan Publishing, Limited
    • ISSN: 0026-8356

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00767133
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport Research Laboratory
  • Files: ITRD
  • Created Date: Aug 6 1999 12:00AM