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RESULTS: SmartRail signalling & train control survey 2015

Posted by SmartRail World Staff on Aug 25, 2015
  • 21% see policy or legal changes as their biggest challenge.How_much_safer_do_you_feel_the_rail_network_is_today_than_when_you_began_work
  • 50% see Big Data as playing a minor or no role at all in their work.
  • 66% would like to see more professionals join rail from other industries.
  • 77% see the industry as safer or much safer than when they started.

SmartRail World invited our global community of rail and metro professionals to share their thoughts on a number of key topics in our industry including challenges, safety, training, Big Data and rail, purchasing decisions, learning from other industries and what excites them (or doesn’t) for the future. All the answers from the SmartRail signalling & train control survey survey 2015 are below so take a look now, some of them might surprise you….

Q1. How long have you worked in the industry?

  • 1-5 Years 24%
  • 6-10 Years 28%
  • 11-15 Years 15%
  • 15-20 Years 13%
  • 20+ Years 20%

Q2. Which of the following signalling, control and train protection systems do you currently work with?

  • European Train Control Systems (ETCS) 19%
  • Communications Based Train Control (CBTC) 28%
  • Automatic Train Control (ATC) 19%
  • Positive Train Control (PTC) 3%
  • None 4%

Others include: Chinese Train Control System, Level crossing & PLC interlocking, Auxiliary Warning System (ZUB 100 Siemens) and Conventional Signalling.

Q3. What provides the biggest challenge to you delivering results?


Q4. How much safer do you feel the rail network is today than when you began work?


Q5. Which of these is used for training at your workplace? (Tick as many as applicable)

  • On-site training by colleague 59%
  • On-site training by external trainers 28%
  • Off-site training 47%
  • Online 31%
  • Simulators 34%

Q6. How important a role does large-scale IT based performance data (“Big Data”) play in your department’s decision making and long-term planning?    


Q7. When making purchasing decisions which of these is the most important factor?

Written in answer: Overall Technical suitability and compliance to requirements

Q8. “The Rail Industry would improve if more of its professionals joined from our industries." (For example from aeronautics or automobiles).

  • Very much agree 11%
  • Agree 56%
  • Neither agree or disagree 30%
  • Disagree ZERO%
  • Very much disagree 4%

Q9. What most excites you about the future of the rail industry?

Written answers included…

Speed of development / it must be the rapidly grow up world communication / it is expanding, but the cost base is still too high / intelligence & security / Internet of Things / In the coming New World the railway network will act as economic artery around the world / development in Train Control systems / Simplicity and comparable standards / High Speed Global travel / further automation / LTE for CBTC / innovations and replacements for High density lines / Advances in Train Control technologies / Hyperloop / Better technology with reasonable prices! / Competition / Technological advancements to improve the safety, reduce travel time and enhance the traveller experience / working on next generation ERTMS / Nothing excites me about the future of the rail industry it's all now about paperwork and HSE which is seen by the majority of workers who dare to say it , as just company reputation covering. And also budgets get squeezed and the first thing to go is jobs, why not make enquires in to how much companies are charging for equipment and materials for the railway, this needs to be tackled ASAP! / The development of new "smart cities" around the world /

All answers delivered via a Survey Monkey online survey between 3rd August and 21st August 2015.

Many thanks to all of the SmartRail Community that took time to fill in the survey!
Signalling or train control expert? Then SmartMetro incorporating the 6th Annual CBTC World Congress held on 3rd - 5th November 2015 in Copenhagen is THE event for you. In an increasingly urbanised world, evolving IT and the digital revolution gives metro systems an opportunity to improve service and meet growing passenger demands. This leading event will once again  allow transport leaders, innovators and specialists to share best practice, uncover new solutions and put CBTC at the heart of SmartMetro systems. Sign up today! 
Digital Guide: Urban Rail and Metro - solutions for a changing industry.
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Topics: Signalling, quirky

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