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Fast and effective tram driver route training

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You are responsible for driver training for a light rail operation. It’s likely that your system is undergoing one or more of: having new lines under construction and/or planned undergoing modifications to existing lines to accommodate road and other infrastructure changes installing revised signalling introducing extra rolling stock

If so, this can result in several logistical problems as your current drivers and new recruits need to learn the new and changed routes as well as complex moves and revised scenarios. The big question is:

How do you do this quickly, efficiently and effectively?

You have expensive simulators, but these are more for learning how to drive a tram. Plus usually only one driver at a time can be trained – four or five at best if the others observe and share time in the simulator.

Training in operational hours is usually not an option so drivers are introduced to the new scenarios by training them out of service hours. Thus drivers assimilate new routes at night, with little or no traffic – which does not best replicate a normal working scenario. Furthermore, only one driver at a time can be trained, so getting your entire driver staff through training can take months, and even then they may get only one or two attempts. By the time a new section is open it may be anything up to three months or more since the first driver experienced it. And then there is the cost of overtime for out-of-shift working.

Alternatively, you can run “chalk ‘n’ talk” sessions. These teach one-to-many but chalking the talk is not walking the talk. Plus it is generally accepted that this method on its own is not widely accepted by adult learners and doesn’t necessarily motivate them to learn.

So, what is the best way to simulate driving these new scenarios? What options are open?

Very few would seem to be the answer. However, Tram-Pro, a part-task simulator has proved to be a powerful and cost effective method of solving the problem.

A PC-based application that includes a driving cab, a 3D external environment, accurate signalling systems, Tram-Pro allows a variety of scenarios to be played out during one training session. It includes a full session log file along with powerful software for accurate analysis of each session and statistical summary reporting. This can be used to provide valuable, auditable records for competency assurance as well as identifying errors made by drivers during training.

Studies have concluded that returns on investment of over ten have been achieved.

The big saving is time and projects have been delivered with the added confidence that the training has been robust and effective with safety at the forefront.

Tram-Pro features:

  • First time training of new routes, moves and signalling for qualified drivers
  • Training of unusual/rarely performed moves
  • Training of shunt moves
  • Refresher training for drivers
  • Familiarisation for controllers
  • election tool for assessing potential new drivers
  • Post incident driver behaviour assessment
  • Communication of environment/signalling for assurance/Hazid purposes

To download more information go to

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