Title: Automation in operations management through positive train control: are the deadlines reasonable?

Authors: Alan D. Smith

Addresses: Department of Marketing, Robert Morris University, Pittsburgh, PA 15219-3099, USA

Abstract: Positive train control (PTC) technology refers to a system of functional requirements for the monitoring and control of train movements to provide increased safety. Once implemented, PTC serves as a set of redundant controls that help ensure safety of its operations and would be systematically activated in the event of operator failure. In response to concerns regarding the safety of commuters, pedestrians, railway workers, and the general public, legislation was passed in 2008 requiring the implementation of PTC technologies for all Class 1 railways across the USA by a deadline of December 31, 2015. The following paper provides background on the topic of train safety, an overview of PTC technologies, as well as the applicable regulation and governance of implementation efforts. This report also discusses the operations management aspects of the design, implementation and ongoing operation of PTC technologies, as well as an update on the current status of implementation activities.

Keywords: automated operations management; passenger train safety; freight train safety; positive train control; PTC; railway safety; railways; systems safety; automation; USA; United States; regulation; governance.

DOI: 10.1504/WRITR.2015.076910

World Review of Intermodal Transportation Research, 2015 Vol.5 No.4, pp.317 - 335

Received: 19 Jan 2015
Accepted: 17 Mar 2015

Published online: 07 Jun 2016 *

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