Global Transport and Logistics

Transport and logistics from around the world.

Month: December 2017

Black Box: Dr Warren’s Safety Passion for Humanity.

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The loss of a loved one in a plane crash is always painful but the failure to know the reason for the crash to prevent re-occurrence may be more painful and highly worrisome. This might explain the personal reason why Dr. David Warren had to
invent the flight-data recorder popularly known as the “Black Box”. Dr David Warren was 9 years old when his father died in 1934 in one of Australian air crashes. As an individual, I cannot imagine how painful it would be for anyone to
lose his biological father at such a tender age of David Warren in a plane crash that would have probably been avoidable. David Ronald de Mey Warren was born on the 20 th of March, 1925. He was an Australian scientist who invented and developed the flight data recorder (FDR) and cockpit voice recorder (CVR), with its media  name known to the public as the ‘Black Box’. The (CVR) is made to record any radio transmissions and sound in the cockpit e.g. pilot voice and engine noises, stall warnings, landing gear extension and retraction, among others. The sound recorder can also help to determine other factors like engine rmp, system failures, speed, the time of specific incidents, conversation with Air Traffic Control, automated radio weather briefings and conversation between the pilots and cabin crew are the features of CVR while the (FDR) is made to record parameters e.g. altitude, airspeed and heading. More so, other FDRs have capacities to store over one thousand related in-flight features that can provide the investigators a clue to the cause of accident.
David Warren humble beginning
He was born on Groote Eylandt, an island off the coast of the Northern Territory. He went to Launceston Grammar School in Tasmania and Trinity Grammar School
in Sydney. He graduated from University of Sydney, where he obtained his first degree in Science with Honours; he also got his PhD in fuel and energy from Imperial College London, a Diploma of Imperial College and a Diploma in
Education from the University of Melbourne.
David Warren career with dates

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*1944-1946:- Teacher of Mathematics and Chemistry, Geelong Grammar School,
1947-1948:- Lecturer in Chemistry, University of Sydney.
*1948-1951:- Scientific Officer, Woomera Rocket Range and Imperial College,
1952-1983:- Principal Research Scientist, Aeronautical Research Laboratories,
Melbourne, (now part of the Defence Science and Technology Organisation).
1981-1982:- Scientific Adviser (Energy) to the Victorian State Parliament.
However, when David Warren was still working in Defence Science and Technology Organisation’s Aeronautic Research Laboratories in Melbourne, he rose to the post of Principal Research Scientist. However, as a Principal Research Scientist in Aeronautical Research Laboratory (ARL), a reputable organization, he was called  upon to investigate the plane crash of the first commercial jet-powered airliner in the world, the Comet.
Dr Warren: A Thoughtful Friend of Humanity

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While still investigating, he had an idea, he had a deep thought within himself, that it would be good and far better, if there would be an object or device that would record all that would happen in a plane immediately before the crash. He, however, supported his idea first with a miniature recorder he had seen in a trade fair.

He further thought that if such a recorder could be installed in a plane to record details and be able to get it back from the wreckage. It would go a long way to determine the cause of a plane crash and to prevent it from re-occurrence. His thought showed concern for the needs and feelings for all people. What a good thought for humanity!
A Dogged Persistence in Pursuing a Vision and a Mission for Humanity
He had a vision and a mission; his vision is to invent a device that would make air transport safe for all and his mission is to do everything possible to bring his vision
to reality. It is interesting to know that Dr David’s vision was not welcome in his home country in the first place. So, he made it known by writing to air transport
authorities in other countries in the world, yet no country showed interest.
However, in a bid to make his vision acceptable, he took time off to build a
cockpit voice recorder and a flight data recorder with capacity to store up to 4
hours before any crash. All of these efforts were parts of his mission to make his
vision successful. So, the first black box was made. Hence, the saying, ‘seeing is

A successful Vision

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However, Dr David’s efforts eventually paid off in 1958 when the former British
air Vice-Marshal, Sir Robert Hardingham visited Aeronautical Research Laboratory
(ARL). During his lunch hour, Dr Warren was asked to showcase his project; it was
then he was able to prove the importance of the black box. Sir Robert saw it as a good project; therefore, he was invited to England to exhibit his project and it was
a successful exhibition as the Ministry of Aviation announced that the installation
of the black box would soon be made mandatory in England. The exhibition was
also made in Canada and America through Australian Embassy.
Dr Warren’s project used magnetic recording media which accepted easy erasing
and re-recording and which made it useful for commercial airliners. Despite this
qualities, Warren’s project lacked Australian support at first, yet Dr Warren was
never discouraged until the project was accepted in other countries, wherefore,
in his home country better plans for the project were made for better development and production.
This project, however, without doubt, has proved immensely useful for plane
crash investigations. There were incidents where CVR provided important
information to the accident cause. For instance, as fate would have it for Dr
Warren, in 1960, after the crash of a Fokker Friendship at Mackay (Queensland), it
was strongly recommended that the black box flight recorders be installed in all
aircraft. Why? It is because data recorded through the black-box were good
evidence to be used in plane crash investigations and more importantly, the box
can provide data or information that may be difficult if not impossible to obtain
by other means. As a result of this, Australia was the first country to make the
black box mandatory. Hence the saying, ‘persistence may be a bitter plant at first
but it has a sweet fruit’.
The Qualities of a Black Box

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With the modern technology, the black box is the most survivable object of a
plane crash. The box is made and protected with an Under-water Locator Beacon
(ULB); the ULB is to provide protection for the black box if it falls in water or river, and if this happens, the device known as “Pinger” is set off or turn on, and from
the depth of 14,000 feet, it sends auditory wave on 37.5 KHz to a unique receiver.
However, once the black box is found from a crash, a special unique computer
and audio equipment can be used to get the information stored in the recorder
and to inter-print it into a comprehensive manner that will help the transport
investigator to determine the cause of the crash and to prevent the re-occurrence.
Honor to Who Honor is Due

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Dr Warren’s passion for humanity has been honored by several organizations for
his dogged commitment to air safety for all. However, the following are the honors and awards credited to Dr Warren:
*FAIE-Fellow of the Australian Institute of Energy
*The Australian Institute of Energy Medal (1999)
*Hartnett Medal of the Royal Society of the Arts (2000)
*Centenary Medal (2001)
*Lawrence Hargrave Award of the Royal Aeronautical Society (2001)
*Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) (2002)
*ICAO Edward Warner Award (2016)
*In November 2008, Qantas named one of their Planes A380s after Warren in
honor of his commitment to aviation industry.
*Dr Warren’s casket had an inscription that read “Flight Recorder Inventor, Do
Not Open.” However, he died on July 19, 2010, when he was 85 years old.
*The ACT Government named a road after his name, in the suburb of Hume, in
June 2012.

*In November 16, 2013, his name was instated into the Australian Aviation Hall of
*The Defence Science and Technology Organisation, on 25 th of March 2014,
named their Canberra Headquarters after his name.
Beyond Air Transport
Having considered the great importance of the black box in air transport safety, the Federal Railway Administrations (FRA) US has also made it mandatory for the US; Canadian and Mexican trains operating above 30 miles per hour on the US rail net work must install event recorders. This is (FRA) ‘final rule 49 CFR part 229’ that was revised on June 30, 2005.
The Black box in rail transport is also an object that records data about the train
operations. The Modern Train Event Recorder is used to record so many things in
train operations such as time, distance, speed, horn signal, brake pipe pressure,
throttle position, emergency brake system, independent brake cylinder pressure
and speedometers.
U.S. Specification for Modern Train Event Recorders
The Modern Train Event Recorder is expected to follow the International or
National Standards like IEEE Std.1482-1999; FRA Final Rule 49 CFR Part 229; IEC
62625-1; among others,. However, here are the specifications in terms of hardness to test the crash worthiness:
*It must be able to resist fire temperature of 750 at least for one hour e.g.
temperature of burning fuel.
*It should be able to accommodate impact shock of 55g.
*Static crush of 110 KN for five minutes: this is to test when there is locomotive
derailment with blunt object impact
*It must be able to withstand fluid immersion at least for two days in diesel,
water, salt water, and lube oil.
*Hydrostatic pressure equivalent to immersion to a depth of 15 m in water for
two days.
*It must be able to store the last 48 hours of safety-critical train data.
UK and Ireland Specifications of the Modern Train Event Recorder
The Modern Train Event Recorder is expected to follow GM/RT 2472 standard;
wherefore, all trains operating in UK and Ireland are to install the black box that
has the following specifications:
*It must be able to resist fire of 700 C for 5 minutes
*It must be able to accommodate impact shock of 100g, 3 times on each of its 6
*Static crush of 20 KN for 1 minute, to all edges and faces.
*It must be able to withstand fluid immersion in water, AFFF or R134A for 1 hour
Black Box in Road Transport
Dr Warren invention is not only relevant to air transport, but to other modes of
transport. It is important to note that the Modern Event Data Recorders are now
installed in cars these days; new cars now come with installed black boxes. Speed
has been identified as one of the leading factors of road accidents and one of the
functions of the black box is to record speed at a particular time before any road
accident or collision. Undeniably, the black box remains relevant not only in air
transport but also in road transport.
Black Box Components
Without any element of doubt, at this point, you will also agree that the
importance of the black box in modes of transport cannot be over-emphasized.
The plane, the train and the motor car are all equipped with the black box for
safety purpose. Wherefore, one may be wondering to know the component parts
of this important box. However, the major components of this inevitable box in
transport operations are stated below:
*Aluminum Housing
*High-temperature Insulation
*Stainless-steel Shell
*A Steel Plate
*Magnetic tape
Black Box: A positive revenge for father’s death and a strong desire for safety
As a writer of this article, I will not like to conclude this article without providing a
broad overview of Dr. Warren’s history in line with the above sub-title. As an
individual, I see Dr Warren’s history and project as positive revenge for his father’s death and strong desire for safety for all. Indeed, David Warren was a friend of humanity. Like I noted earlier, David Warren lost his dad in 1934, in one of the Australian air crashes, when he was just a 9 year – old.
Young David Warren became a fatherless child and probably grown up with a pain
for losing his dad in a plane crash. By that time, he might not know the cause of
the plane crash that killed his father; all he knew was that his father also died in a
plane crash. Plane crashes, without having the clear pictures of what the causes were, might be the most worrisome issue in the heart of a researcher like David
As fate would have it, Dr. Warren got a job in 1952 in Aeronautical Research
Laboratories (ARL), Melbourne: a science research organization that deals with
the operations of aircrafts. It was there he rose to the post of Principal Research
Scientist and as a researcher in such an organization, he carefully studied to find
new knowledge for transport investigators to easily determine the cause of a plane crash and to have the clue to preventing a re-occurrence.
Actually his father died in a plane crash many years ago when he was nobody; so
when he became a researcher in ARL, he took the matters into his own hands and
revenged the death of his father for the safety of humanity. He discovered the
black box for the benefit of humanity. He had successfully defeated the plane
crash that hurt him many years ago for the benefit of all.
His passion for safety for all is a famous land-mark to reckon with in the history of
humanity. Even though he was not paid for his selfless service to humanity, what
he had done for the human race cannot be easily forgotten. Even though he is no
more but his handiwork still speaks for him till today.
He was a man of vision and mission. Like I noted earlier, his vision was to make
the air transport safe for all and his mission was to do all he could to actualize his
vision. He introduced his vision in his country, he was turned down. He later took
a bold step to write to other countries about his vision, yet he was also turned down. Nonetheless, he was not discouraged; he took time off to build the black box. These are parts of his mission to actualize his vision and indeed, his vision was accomplished.
Despite the discouragement, he was still focused. A man with vision is a man with
a focus. This is the attitude of the persistent people and they never lose their focus. David Warren’s vision for safety came to pass. Experts have judged the air transport as the safest mode of transport in the world. Indeed, he actualized his vision for all.
I humbly and really celebrate a man who was a hero to all; I celebrate a man whose work touches lives;I celebrate a man who loved unconditionally; I celebrate a man who believed in sharing knowledge and vision for humanity sake; I celebrate a man who believed in caring for humanity; I celebrate a man who desired safety for all and also put a smile on people’s faces. Though he is no more, but his legacy lives on. My tribute to a hero: Dr. David Ronald de Mey Warren.

Don’t Endanger Your Life: Think Twice When Approaching the Level Crossing.

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There have been 254 collisions between cars and trains at public road level crossings in New Zealand from 2004 to  1 September 2015. Source:
The level crossing is a place or level point where railway, road or path meets or crosses each other. It is also known as a grade crossing, railway crossing, railroad crossing, train crossing, etc. Every human being on earth has only one life to live; no one has more than one life.

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The way and manner we protect our lives from dangers determine how long we shall  to fulfill destiny in life. If one imagines the thousands of people that have lost their lives in different modes of transport, one may wonder if the modes of transport are death traps for man on earth. This explains why safety in transport is very important.

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Without any element of doubt, modes of transport and the new technologies are
meant to make life easy for man and to benefit man in all ramifications but
human errors and poor safety attitude of some people are the leading factors of
most accidents in any mode of transport. These may also explain why there is high rate of rail accidents in the world. For example, according to Department  of Transport and the Federal Railroad Administration, more than 2,500 train accidents occur every year in the US.
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If all railroad users, train drivers and the entire railway staff consider safety as
their first priority, railroad will be safer. For instance, there is speed limit a train
driver is expected to obey at a particular route section. Train’s lighting and the
good condition of the track must not be in doubt, the train must be equipped
with functional horn and train bell, the train driver is expected to honk, at least,
1,000 feet distance from the point of the level crossing and he is also expected to
allow the train bell to ring until the last car of the train left the level crossing, train
driver’s sensitivity during operation must not be questioned. These, among
others, are the obligations every individual concerned must keep to make the
railroad safer.
Having read the above caption as a reader of this article, probably you are one of
those that would have expected the caption to be: “Don’t endanger your life:
think twice when you are at the level crossing” not “…when you are approaching the level crossing.”

You may further assume it is only necessary to think twice when one is already at the level crossing not when one is still approaching it. If you hold this kind of opinion, it is good. Why? It is because it will help you after reading through this article to understand how dangerous the level crossing accident is and the reason why you need to think twice when approaching it.
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As an individual, my observation reveals that the frequency of the level crossing
accidents these days is becoming more worrisome and the consequences thereafter are even more serious than any other kind of accident in railway transport. For instance, in Europe not less than 400 people and in the United States over 300 people are killed every year in level crossing accidents. Source: Wikipedia.
In addition, in 2016, there were 2025 collisions in the US, resulting into 265 fatalities and 798 injuries; also, in 2015, 2075 collisions occurred resulting into
233 fatalities, 1032 people injured, while also, in 2014, there were 2,295 collisions in the US., resulting into 262 fatalities and 873 injuries. Source: Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).
However, from the above data, you will notice that over 2,000 collisions occurred each year. Obviously, there is progress in reduction of collision at the level crossing. For example, in 1981 and 1982, there were 9,461 collisions and 7,932 collisions in the US, respectively (FRA). So, when you compare it to the last 3 years, you will see there’s obvious reduction, like I have noted earlier. Yet these figures, as it were, in the last 3 years are still not acceptable. Why? It is because the level crossing collisions are avoidable accidents. Therefore, from zero collision to over 2,000 collisions is still a great figure and it’s not acceptable.

It is important to note that the majority of level crossing accidents happens during the day where the level crossings are even equipped with automatic warning devices. One may wonder why the majority of this kind of accident still happens during the day. This, among other reasons, justifies the above caption, “Don’t Endanger Your Life: Think Twice When Approaching the Level Crossing”. This is because the cyclist’s, the pedestrian’s and the driver’s negligence at the level crossing may be a costly mistake that can kill you.

Do Not Gamble With Rail Safety; If You Do, You Bet Your Life.

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The unparalleled features of the rail transport over other land transports are
undeniable. As a result, the rail transport is gaining more patronage day by day.
Many people want to travel by rail while many organizations also like to engage
the services of the rail transport in moving their products in large quantities to where they are needed. This, they do, to reduce the transport cost for their
products. Wherefore, rail transport is playing a key role in moving people and
goods in large number.
It is important to note that many people gamble with their safety when making use of the rail transport. Passengers’ safety must not be the concern of rail transport management only but individual rail passengers must also have concern for their own safety while using or traveling by the rail transport.
Attitude is everything
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Poor attitude of some passengers to railway safety is highly worrisome. The misbehavior some passengers exhibit while traveling in rail transport show their poor safety culture and that many of them are gambling with their lives. Poor or bad attitude to rail transport safety can be described as the way you think and behave that can endanger your life and the lives of other rail transport users.

Poor attitude of many people to transport safety also suggests their lack of safety culture to the transport mode they make use of. Safety culture in transport, as it were, is the way you are expected to think and behave in a particular environment with respect to transport safety. In other words, safety culture in transport is the transport safety features of everyday existence shared by people in a particular place. Anyhow, in a simple language, is a way of life with respect to transport safety.
A mature safety culture in railway transport is characterized by the way people
notice and understand the importance of safe operation in rail transport and the
urgent need to manage or reduce risk to an acceptable level. In a bid to improve
the railway safety, the responsibilities of individual passengers who have a potential impact on the safe operation of the railway system must not be compromised.
Is this a Sign of Poverty or Shortage of Public Transport?

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The safety of the railway depends on the behaviors and attitudes of everyone in the system e.g. the staff and the passengers. Having examined the pictures, one would wonder why people in their large number would have to take rail safety for granted; one may still be wondering why many people we see in this picture had to hang on rail cars why many of them sat on top of the train. It is not because of poverty or shortage of public transport that would make people in their large number to take their lives for granted as rightly shown in the pictures.

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The reasons are simply due to lack of good transport safety culture in the community and poor safety attitude of individual. It is needless to say, as you have also noticed in the pictures used in this article, that lack of safety culture with poor safety attitude can lead to misbehavior of many transport users that will increase the risk of accidents.

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Often times, rail accidents are caused by people. They are not made and they can be preventable instead of managing them. One way to achieve this is good safety culture with good safety attitude of individual; in fact, it’s a collective responsibility of all rail transport users. To address the misbehavior of people towards safety, hence, good safety culture and individual safety attitude are important directions to make the rail transportation and other modes of transportation safer.
Responsibilities for railway staff during operations

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*The safe movement of rail transport must start from the railway stations.
* Rail vehicles’ safety condition must be certified before any operation.
*Rail staff must ensure that every passenger behaves in a safe manner while
making use of the rail transport.
*The staff must take strong safe decision to control all types of safety risk or
misbehavior of all passengers during operation.
*They must ensure that safety regulations are complied with throughout each

5 ways of building and maintaining transport safety culture
Good transport safety culture is not what people can achieve in a moment or in a
day, it is a kind of belief people grow up with in a particular environment that can easily be noticed in their behavior. For instance, in one of the television stations, I heard the story of a senior transport safety officers from one of the African countries who traveled to one of the overseas countries. According to him, as he wanted to cross to the other side of the road, he said immediately he stepped on Zebra crossing with just one leg, he saw all the motorists both from left and right on such busy road stopped immediately.

So, he said he was afraid thinking that something bad like accident must have happened and so, he ran back from the road to see what actually had happened on the road. He saw the drivers calling him to cross the road; it was then he knew that it was him they actually stopped for. Why did he have to run back to know what was happening? It’s because he lacked road safety culture, even though he’s a senior road safety officer in his country, yet where he’s coming from he has not seen motorists, in one accord, stop at once for just a pedestrian to make use of the road. So when he got to a well cultured environment, it was a big surprise to him.

Nevertheless, here are some ways to build and maintain good safety culture:
1. Education: People need to be thought in a community or environment
where transport safety culture is lacking. Several efforts must be made to
teach people the importance of transport safety in the best language they
will understand.
2. Orientation: Periodic orientation must be given to the people on what they
have been thought and necessary information about new transport safety
they need to know.
3. Watchfulness: Individual transport users must always be careful enough to
notice any form of danger in their environment. The misbehavior of
individual transport users must be monitored and reported to the authority
concerned to correct such individuals.
4. Ability to change: Individual must be ready to adjust to any safety rules or
5. Fair Justice: A fair culture treats people in a way that is reasonable and
proper. A fair culture encourages and rewards individual who would report
the misbehavior of some transport users and treats the report with required seriousness and thereafter, metes out just punishments to anyone
whose behavior is truly unacceptable.
6. Observations and report: To build a good safety culture, individuals must
also be encouraged to report their observations to the right authorities.
Often times, these have to do with sensitive reports such as highway
robbery, terrorist attack and so on.
7. Study: A study on past safety records and how to improve on them for
future purpose is another method to sustain a good transport safety
Nonetheless, the rail transport service provider must play a leading role at all
times in sustaining rail safety culture through education, public enlightenment among others. More so, railway infrastructure manager and the entire staff managing the infrastructures must also play their own role to sustain rail safety culture by fixing railway infrastructures such as track, station, signaling and electrification in an acceptable manner for safe operation. The engineering department must also play their own role; the department must ensure that every rail vehicle set for operation is in good condition.
In conclusion, the railway staff, the management, the individual passengers
and potential customers, that is, different organizations engaging the services
of railway transport for their products must all rise up to the task to fulfill their
individual responsibilities and co-operation to build and sustain rail transport
safety culture. Rail transport accident is always painful due to the number of innocent lives and goods that are usually involved, wherefore; cultivating the
mind of people towards rail transport safety culture is a great gain.

15 Benefits of Equipping Your Car with a functional Black Box and Its 5 Top Limitations.

Modern Event Data Recorder which is popularly known as Black Box is now installed in cars these days; new cars in the UK and the US now come with an installed black box. In a bid to reduce road accidents, car manufacturers now equip their new cars with a functional Black box.

The device shows when, where and how a car is being driven at a particular time. It gives detailed information and also serves as a feedback to the driver and any other third party. It warns the driver by giving alerts if pre-set parameters are exceeded, e.g. when over speeding.

It helps the new drivers, most especially the young drivers, to be more safety conscious while driving on the road, having realized that their driving behaviors can be monitored by a device installed in their vehicle; hence, they resist the temptation to over-speed or being influenced by their colleagues.

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The black box device can monitor drivers’ behaviors in the following ways:

*The beginning and the end of a journey






*the use of seat belt

*Fuel used

However, the following are the benefits of the black box installed in a car:

  1. It is inexpensive. Most cars, these days in the UK and the US, come with car black box.
  1. Once it is installed in a car, it will continue to monitor the driving behaviors of the driver which may be difficult to observe by any other means.
  1. It can show how a particular car is being used which may be difficult to obtain by any other means.
  1. In case of an accident, it gives more objective, accurate and detailed information a few minutes before the incident.
  1. It is the best tool for employers to monitor and assess their drivers.
  2. It is a vital tool for improving safety and reducing risk and crash rates.
  3. It is a way to help young and new drivers to improve their driving behaviors.
  1. It also helps insurance companies to reduce traffic accidents by promoting safe driving through black box insurance.
  1. Stolen vehicles can be recovered. This is so because some of the black boxes have in-built GPS, which means your car can be tracked if reported stolen. Some boxes have the capacity to stop the ignition.
  1. Since the black box can provide accurate and detailed information few minutes before an accident, this will fast-track a claims process from insurance companies, wherefore serving as a reward for a good driver.
  1. It can serve as a vital research tool for researchers to gather as many data as possible on real-life and natural driving behaviors of many drivers and to determine the effects on drivers’ behaviors.
  1. It can provide data that can help the road safety or highway authorities to easily identify problem locations on their road network.
  1. Speeding has been identified as one of the leading factors of road accidents. However, with the introduction of the black box technology that enables the insurance companies to come up with Pay-AS- You-Drive policy in the US which means a financial incentive will be given to a good driver, this insurance policy has effectively reduced speed among young drivers, thereby reducing the accident rates that are likely caused by over speeding.
  1. It helps both the new and young drivers to correct their mistakes.
  2. It gives alerts if pre-set parameters are exceeded e.g. when over-speeding.

5 Most Notable Limitations of a Car Black Box

  1. It cannot measure or help to keep a safe distance.
  2. It cannot prevent dangers; it can only record the data before thedangers occur.
  1.  It cannot tell you who is driving, no matter how safe you are in driving. If somebody else with bad behavior in driving drives your car, this will affect your records because the device cannot tell us or identify who is driving the car at a particular time.
  1.  It only highlights a problem without providing an answer. For instance, when the feedback indicates: “unsafe driving” it will not show you the area of your driving that is not safe
  1. The audible alert may distract the driver.

3 Major Types of Railway Accidents and 36 List of Causes Common to Them

Rail Accident

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It is an undeniable fact that rail accidents have become a significant concern in the world and this explains why several efforts have been made by different countries concerned to reduce the rate of accident in their countries. However, in this article are the 3 major types of railway accident and the list of their causes.

3 Major Types of Railway Accidents

  1. Collision Accidents
  2. Derailment Accidents and
  3. Other Means of Accidents                                                                                         1. Rail Accident by Collision

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A collision is a crash in which 2 trains hit each other. In other words, a collision occurs when a train runs into another or an object. Once it happens, the result is always very serious, if not fatal. This is why collision is the most dangerous accident in rail transports. However, the major types of collisions include:

* Head-on collision,

* Rear-end collision and

* Side collision

Types of Rail Accident by Collision

Since a collision involves 2 or more objects crashing into one another, hence this type of crash includes:

  1. Collision involving Trains
  2. Collision involving a Train and a Motor Vehicle
  3. Collision Involving a Pedestrian

Collision involving Trains

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This is a head-on collision between 2 trains. This kind of accident always results to great disasters.

Collision involving a train and a motor vehicle

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Several motorists and passengers have lost their lives in level crossing accidents. It is very difficult if not impossible for a train to stop like a motor vehicle for any object at the level crossing.

Collision involving Pedestrian

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As a collision can occur between a train and a motor vehicle, likewise pedestrians, in fact, a collision involving a pedestrian or pedestrians is more likely to result infatality.

  1. Rail Accident by Derailment

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A derailment occurs when a train leaves its tracks; better still, a derailment is

said to occur when a moving rail suddenly runs off its tracks. When a single car or coach derails, it may affect other cars and at times, you see the whole train derails completely.

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A derailment can be due to a defaulted plain track, over speed at a cross section, junction or a collision, among others.

  1. Rail Accident by other meansImage result for pictures of rail accidents

    Fire Accident

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During a railway operation, a fire accident may occur in a train, probably due to a

vehicular electrical fault, or an attack by terrorists. People sitting on top of a train

and people hanging on a moving train may also fall down. These, among other

means, are possible ways by which accidents can occur in rail transport.

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List of Causes of Rail Accident

There many factors that can cause rail accident, below are the list of some of these factors:

  1. Communication Errors
  2. Brake Rigging Defects
  3. Hand Brake Defects
  4. Other Brake Defects
  5. Over Speed
  6. Body Defects
  7. Center-Plate/Car- body Defects
  8. Wrong Use of Switches
  9. Coupler Defects
  10. Track and Structure Defects
  11. Truck Structure Defects
  12. Obstructions
  13. Side-bearing, Suspension Defects
  14. Level Crossing Collisions
  15. Bearing Failure
  16. Axle Defects
  17. Track-Train Intersection
  18. Broken Wheels
  19. Other Wheel Defects
  20. Signal Failures
  21. TOFC/COFC Defects
  22. Road-bed Defects
  23. Non-Traffic Weather Causes
  24. Loco Electrical and Fires
  25. All other Locomotive Defects
  26. Track Geometry ( excl. Wide Gauge )
  27. All Other Car Defects


  1. Stiff Truck
  2. Rail Defects at Bolted Joint
  3. Joint Bar Defects
  4. Broken Rails or Welds
  5. Brake Operation (Main Line)
  6. Other Rail and Joint Defects
  7. Failure to Obey/Display Signal
  8. Train Length ( Car-mile- related and train-mile- related accident)
  9. Employee Physical Condition

5 List of Design Criteria for Road Standards

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This consists of a detailed list of considerations to be used in negotiating a set of
road standards in an environment. This includes the following:
1. Resource management objectives: These indicate the reasons and
purpose a particular road should be built in a particular area. For instance,
it may have to do with the economic benefits derivable in such an area
when the expected road is constructed e.g. access to rural community for
easy transportation of agricultural produce.
2. Physical environmental factors: The topographic, climatic, soil and
vegetative characteristics of an area, the physical features of the land as
well as the type of road to be constructed and so on must be determined if
a road must be built in that area or not.
3. Environmental limitations: There are social-political limitations e.g.
erosiveness of soils, difficult geologic conditions, high rainfall. Others
include land ownership boundaries, state of the local economy and the
public opinion about the given project.
4. Traffic requirements: The average daily traffic should be estimated for
different user groups and the traffic volume will also determine the kind of
road needed in such an area.
5. Traffic service level

List of 10 Factors Responsible for Road Designs

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The volume of traffic in an area is often considered in determining the road
designs in such an area. However, such factors usually include the following:
1. Number of lanes
2. Turnout spacing
3. Lane widths
4. Type of driving surface
5. Sight distances
6. Design speed
7. Clearance
8. Horizontal and vertical alignments
9. Curve widening
10. Turn around


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Death and injury from road accidents, in some parts of the world, mostly
developing countries, are becoming a notable global problem that requires a
serious attention. For instance, in 1998, the World Bank gave an estimation of 1
million deaths from road accidents. In 2004, the World Health Day, the report
from the WHO and the World Bank showed that the number of deaths recorded
from road accidents was about 1.2 million people while 50 million people were
One may wonder why there is a high rate of road accidents in the developing
countries while in the developed countries the rate of accidents is reducing on
daily basis. In the developed countries, the traffic rules and regulations are
enforced on all motorists while in the developing countries, there is poor
implementation of the traffic rules and regulations coupled with diverse personal
issues that many people in the developing countries have to face. Such issues,
amongst others include, poverty, depression, physical illness, emotional and
financial stress. These are enormous possible factors that may force the road
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users to misbehave when making use of the road. Hence, below are 10 possible
ways of reducing road accidents on our roads:
Possible ways of reducing road accidents
1. A political will and commitment by all established organizations concerned
to deal with road traffic accidents. All law enforcement agencies must
consciously work to enforce traffic the rules and regulations on all
motorists. It must be a commitment without favoritism.
2. A careful plan involving education, engineering and enforcement to reduce
the rate of accidents
3. Transport authorities must have the same goal to reduce the high rate of
accidents and the strong passion to bring it to reality.
4. A concrete plan with specific measures for implementation and
enforcement must be made.
5. There must be a strong co-ordination within and among different levels of
government and with private actors.
6. Careful and critical evaluation of measures and their effectiveness to
achieve the desired goal.
7. There must be a road safety policy to achieve this goal.
8. The widespread nature of corruption mostly in Africa, among the
government officials e g. the Police, Vehicle Inspection Officer (VIO), etc.
must be checked.
9. Recognizing road the traffic accidents as the handiwork of man and not as a
question of fate.
10. Understanding all accidents as a result of human errors are preventable, if
there is positive change in our attitude toward road safety.


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