As part of a major Australian Research Council funded Linkage research program we have been applying Cognitive Work Analysis to understand behaviour at rail level crossings and then design new safer rail level crossing environments.
In Australia since 2000 there have been well over 100 fatalities resulting from collisions at rail level crossings between trains and vehicles and trains and pedestrians. As well the tragic human costs resulting from such events, the problem brings with it an estimated annual financial cost of $100m.
We aim to develop and test a series of new rail level crossing environments that better consider and exploit the diverse capabilities and needs of all users. In addition, the project has developed a new sociotechnical systems design process that is intended for use in developing new infrastructure in rail and other safety critical systems.
The project is a collaboration between the Centre for Human Factors and Sociotechnical Systems at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Monash University, the University of Southampton, the Victorian Rail Track Corporation, Transport Safety Victoria, Public Transport Victoria, the Transport Accident Commission, VicRoads and V/Line.
You can get free access to our latest article based on this work, recently published in Applied Ergonomics.
Click here for free access to the article