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
Derailment Accidents and
Other Means of Accidents 1. Rail Accident by Collision
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:
Collision involving Trains
Collision involving a Train and a Motor Vehicle
Collision Involving a Pedestrian
Collision involving Trains
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
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
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.
Rail Accident by Derailment
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.
A derailment can be due to a defaulted plain track, over speed at a cross section, junction or a collision, among others.
Rail Accident by other meansFire Accident
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.
List of Causes of Rail Accident
There many factors that can cause rail accident, below are the list of some of these factors:
Brake Rigging Defects
Hand Brake Defects
Other Brake Defects
Center-Plate/Car- body Defects
Wrong Use of Switches
Track and Structure Defects
Truck Structure Defects
Side-bearing, Suspension Defects
Level Crossing Collisions
Other Wheel Defects
Non-Traffic Weather Causes
Loco Electrical and Fires
All other Locomotive Defects
Track Geometry ( excl. Wide Gauge )
All Other Car Defects
Rail Defects at Bolted Joint
Joint Bar Defects
Broken Rails or Welds
Brake Operation (Main Line)
Other Rail and Joint Defects
Failure to Obey/Display Signal
Train Length ( Car-mile- related and train-mile- related accident)
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
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
8. Horizontal and vertical alignments
9. Curve widening
10. Turn around
Oftentimes, one may wonder why some motorists, especially the commercial
ones, choose to ply a particular route to carry out their daily activities, as if there
are no other routes for them to use. There are reasons why motorists will choose
and not to choose a particular route for the same journey. Hence, the saying
“there is no smoke without fire.” Also, most of their reasons are for their better
advantage. Following are the reasons why drivers choose a particular route for
1. Speed: This is the rate at which a vehicle travels. Most drivers like to drive
their vehicle at a particular speed convenient and safer for them.
2. Travel time: The time at which a driver, mostly a commercial driver, uses to
complete a particular journey matters a lot. The route that is full of
different obstructions that may cause unnecessary delay, thereby
increasing the driver’s travel time will not encourage many motorists to ply
such a route.
3. Traffic interruption: Anything that interrupts will discourage the motorists
to continue to ply such a route if there is a better alternative.
4. Freedom to maneuver: Drivers will prefer a wide route that will enable
them to move their cars easily and carefully probably to overtake or to
avoid accidents. Therefore, a road that is very tiny or narrow to maneuver
will discourage them.
5. Safety: A road must be free enough from any form of danger, otherwise
both the drivers and the passengers would be discouraged to travel on such
6. Driver’s comfort: When a driver travels on a long journey and throughout
the journey he feels less worry and more importantly, he feels safe
travelling on such a road, undeniably he will be eager to travel again on the
7. Convenience: When you drive on a good road, the time and the stress you
would have encountered if you are on a bad road would be reduced.
8. Operating cost: Every transport service provider is expected to have
practical and economical mindset to manage his business. He must be able
to choose the routes that are cost-effective for his business.
9. Business orientation: No commercial vehicle driver will hesitate to travel
on a route where he can easily get goods and passengers to carry. Since his
business is to carry goods and passengers for economic gain, then it will be
unwise of him to abandon a route where his desire can be met.
10. Inevitable route: Every motorist going to their offices and houses will have
no choice but to pass through the road that leads to their houses and
A shipwreck1. RMS TITANIC
RMS Titanic is one of the popular shipwrecks in the world history. It was an
ocean liner said to be unsinkable but later proved to be most notable sinkable
ship in the world. In 1912, precisely on April 10, the ship was on a journey. 4
days as the journey progressed, precisely on April 14, 1912, the ship suddenly
hit an iceberg just before the midnight and the ship sank less than 3 hours,
killing 1,514 lives.
However, in 1985, a Franco-American expedition discovered the ship and
found that the ship split into 2 parts, each part lying about a 3 rd of a mile from
2. RMS REPUBLIC
RMS Republic was built 1903 and sank on January 24, 1909 at about
8:40p.m. 6 lives were said to be lost in that incident. The bad incident
occurred in 1909, on January 23 rd , when the ship collided with the Lloyd
Italiano liner SS Florida and the ship sank at about 8:40 p.m. on the said
3. RMS LUSITANIA
RMS Lusitania started operation in 1906 and it sank on May 7 th , 1915. 1,
191 lives were said to be lost in that incident. It was said that the shipwreck
was caused by a German U-boat.
4. USS ARIZONA
USS Arizona was specially built for the US Navy in1915. It was bombed by
the Japanese on December 7 th , 1941. It was said that 1, 177 crew members
and officers were killed in the incident.
On the 5 th of May, the shipwreck became National Historic Landmark in the
US and the remains, known as USS Arizona Memorial, are viewable in the
5. THE MARY ROSE
It was a Tudor warship used during the reign of Henry VIII and it was
used in many battles against France, Britain and Scotland and it was
sunk during a battle against French.
It was a Swedish warship, believed to have been built between 1626
and 1628. It sank on the 10 th of August, 1628, after being hit by
strong winds and flooding, sinking 20 minutes and less than a mile
into its journey.
7. THE ANNE’S REVENGE
It was an 18 th century warship popularly known as the ship of the
legendary pirate Blackbeard. It used the ship less than a year with
greatest achievement during this short period of time.
8. MV DONA PAZ
MV Dona Paz is referred to as the deadliest of all peacetime maritime
disasters. In December 20 th , 1987, the Philippine registered ferry with
over 4,000 passengers collided with an oil tanker MT Vector resulting
into fire accident killing an estimated number of 4, 386 passengers
and there were only 24 survivors.
It took 8 hours for Philippine maritime authorities to hear of the
incident due to poor communication equipment. However, because
of the fatal incident, it is referred to as ‘Asia’s Titanic’
9. THE BLACK SWAN
It is a Spanish war ship known as Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes.
The warship sank in 1804 off Portugal territorial waters. However, in
2007 an American Company, Odyssey Marine Exploitation,
discovered gold, worth of $500 million.
However, the Spanish government made it known to be the rightful
owner of the said gold, hence the case was decided in the US
Supreme Court, and the court ordered the gold should be returned
to Spanish authorities.
10. MS WORLD DISCOVERER
It was a Danish cruise ship manufactured in 1974. The disaster
occurred when the ship struck a rock at the Solomon Islands; all the
passengers survived the incident.
Sitting on the driver’s seat for the first time to drive the vehicle alone may excite a new driver but it’s not an easy task for him. Such a new driver is likely to be nervous and fearful while driving.Also, such a driver is likely to be over conscious not to hit any object or being hit by other drivers. These, among others, are the predictable misbehavior of new drivers.However, below are the common mistakes of a typical new driver on the road:
Inferiority Complex: Often times, they drive under pressure. Why? It is because they think other experienced drivers on the road are better than they are.Hence, consciously or unconsciously, they become anxious to the point of making several mistakes while driving.
Panic or fear:At times, they feel they are very conscious while driving but in the real sense, they are panicky.As a result, often times, you see them stopping suddenly on the road causing unnecessary traffic delays.
Poor understanding of the Traffic rules and Regulations: One of the qualities of a good professional driver is the ability to interpret and understand the traffic rules and regulations. In fact, they are one of the ways to drive safe on the road.The difference between a driver and a man who moves the vehicle on the public road is proper understanding of the traffic rules and regulations.
Poor Routine Checks: Failure to carry out daily routine checks such as engine oil, brake oil, battery terminal, light operations to mention but a few, before driving behind the wheel is part of typical new drivers’ mistakes.
Lack of Basic safety information: This is common to those that did not attend a driving school before starting to move the vehicle on the road.They lack safety information to make the road safe such as why they need to equip their vehicle with a functional horn; when and how to join the road; when to brake and accelerate and so on.
Poor Reverse: New drivers often find it difficult, if not impossible, to reverse the vehicle easily without being assisted, otherwise they hit their vehicles on any object behind them.
Failure to keep proper distance from the vehicle in front while driving
Sometimes new drivers forget to use the traffic indicator lights when turning or moving out of the lane.
Failure to use inner mirror when necessary.
In a bid to avoid the danger of being involved in an accident, some new drivers tend to drive too slowly for the road condition, which thereby affects the easy flow of traffic.
A passenger car is made to carry passengers who travel regularly from one place to another. The passenger train cars have been improved in terms of convenience, comfort and speed.Due to these qualities, people enjoy traveling a long distance with passenger train cars and this means of transport is also more desirable in heavily populated areas.
Moreover, the articulate passenger cars are gaining more popularity in Europe and in the US. This is because major cities in Western Europe are connected by high-speed rail services and such cities include London, Paris, Brussels,
Amsterdam, Geneva, Berlin, Rome, among others. In articulated passenger train cars, joint cars are attached to a truck for normal operations; this also creates more room for more passengers to be carried in a single journey.
However, as many people around the world are patronizing rail transport daily for short and long mobility, for example, Indian Railways carries 22.21 million passengers daily, similarly there is an increase in rail accidents. However, there are 3 factors that can make rail accidents extremely dangerous; they are:
The speed &
The weight of a train
A passenger train is much lighter than freight or cargo train.In other words, the weight of a commuter or passenger train is less than the weight of a cargo train. When passengers in a commuter train are involved in a crash or collision with a cargo train, injuries resulting from the accident are reflected on the passengers and this force is affected by the physical weight of a cargo train. Therefore, if there is a train crash or collision between a commuter and freight train, probably due to poor communication, the cargo train has a lot more mass and momentum to win the fight. In other words, the cargo train has the capacity to cause more harm to passenger train if an accident or a collision occurs.
In a collision that involves 2 trains e.g. a cargo train and a commuter train, which differ in weight, the lighter train will be at a disadvantage. The heavier trains i.e. (cargo train) will have more force due to the weight to push the lighter one which is the passenger train backward during the impact, which often results to derailment of the passenger train.
The speed of a train
Speed has been identified as one of the potential factors for rail accidents; many people have lost their lives in rail accidents due to high speed of train drivers. Often times when over speed is the direct factor of a rail accident, the result is always horrifying.
The Length of a Train
length of train
The length of the train is another important factor we need to consider that can cause rail accidents but unfortunately, most people, including accident investigators, pay little or no attention to this undeniable factor. The longer the train, the higher the chances of involving in an accident than a shorter train. Often times, when rail accidents occur, the investigators have to examine the potential factors that may cause the wreck and the factors they usually look at are: the speed as at the time of the incident, track conditions, throttle and brake settings among others.They may even go a bit further to interview the engineer, the passengers, and so on, in order to determine the cause of the accident but it is interesting to note that most of these accident investigators hardly consider the effects of the train length on train accident rate.
They take the length of a train for granted. They do not know that the longer the length of a train, the greater the potential factors for an accident to occur in rail transport. They do not know that the longer the length of a train, the higher the risk the of a train involving in an accident.
The train length is considered to have an effect on rail accident rate; this is because the mo t the more cars in a train increase, the higher the probability that a car or track elements in or below a train may fail at any point in time during operation. With this knowledge, the causes of accident in this regard can be divided into 2 types which are: firstly, the accident that can result from the number of train-miles covered and secondly, the one that can occur due to the cars-miles covered. (CCP 1995, Arthur D, Little (ADL) 1996). However, the length of a train in this article means the total number of the cars in a train. It is not the linear measurement of the actual length of a train. It is the total number of cars that is attached to a single truck to move with.
A Worrisome Factor
A passenger train is specially made to carry people in their large number. The longer the train, the higher the number of passengers it will carry. Most rail accidents are avoidable accidents because they are caused by human errors; yet it is humans that suffer most in the accidents for many people suffer permanent injuries while others even lose their lives. This is worrisome. For instance, when there is a collision between two passenger trains, the object that suffers most is the occupants (the passengers), hence, the saying when two elephants fight, the grass will suffer.
India’s worst rail disaster
plunges into the Baghmati river. Hundreds more are never found, with an estimated death toll ranging from 500 to 800
The most painful thing is that most innocent people suffer when accidents happen.It is important to note that it is not only passengers that suffer when a rail accident happens, even the pedestrians, bystanders, motorists etc. also suffer in rail accidents. However, for better understanding on the most worrisome factors in rail accidents, below are the examples of rail accidents:
‘At least 23 people died and dozens were injured when 2 passenger trains collided head-on in southern Italy on Tuesday,’ source: New Europe al jazeera.
A total of 27, 581 Indians died in 2014 in railway related accidents…. By the National Crime Records Bureau.
On 26 Nov., 1998, in khanna, at least 212 killed as a train collided with a derailed train.
On Sept., 2002, in Rajdhani, the Rajdhani Express derailed on bridge, killng at least 130 people.
On May 28, 2010, in West Midnapore, West Bengal, : The Calcutta-Mumbai passenger train derailed, killing at least 100.
On August 2, 1999, at least 290 killed as two trains carrying a total of 2,500 people collided.
Nevertheless, ‘The worst accident was the November 20, 2016 derailment of the Indore-Patna Express near Kanpur which resulted in 150 deaths and over 150 injuries.’ Source: hindustantimes
Nevertheless, you will notice from the given examples of rail accidents that the most common fact is the death of people in the accidents. Many important personalities in their communities were sent to their early graves for choosing the rail transport for their journey. Painful enough, most of these are caused by human errors and in a simple language, humans make errors that send other humans to their early graves. This is the most worrisome truth in this article.
All over the world where rail transportation exists, the high demand for it cannot
be denied. People like to travel by rail for both long and short distances within
and outside the country. Rail transport is becoming more attractive and popular,
mostly in Europe, North America and other parts of the world. Rail transport has
been an effective means of transporting people and goods in their large number
for over 10 decades.
In some countries such as India, North America, U.S., Canada, Japan, China to
mention but few, it will not take you a longer time before you see trains in their
large numbers in operation moving large number of people and goods along
thousands of miles in both urban and rural areas. One may wonder why many
people like to travel by rail.
In fact, in India, it will surprise you to see how many people patronize rail
transport. It is a common sight in India to see many people in their large number
hanging on the outside of the rail cars while hundreds of others sitting on top of
rail cars, though this is not a good safety attitude in India yet. The question
remains, why people like to travel by rail? Why do organizations these days also
choose rail transport as a means of transporting their products? However, below
are the notable reasons why people like to travel by rail:
1. It is economical: When you consider the long distance to be covered
and the amount of goods to be carried, you will discover that rail
transport is the right choice for you to use because it is cost-effective.
Bulk freight rail transport has the capacity to pull the weight of over
10,000 tons of goods at a cheaper rate. As many organizations also look
for ways to cut down transportation costs, hence, they use rail transport
as a means to achieve this aim. Even governments in different countries
also encourage their business owners to use rail transport for their
Some organizations that are into liquid and gas business also prefer to use
rail transport because there are rail cars specially built to carry such
People also like to travel by rail because it is much cheaper than to travel by
2. It accommodates more baggage: Rail transport allows passengers to
carry more bags without stress. People come with their baggage without
unnecessary limitations and if you are to pay for much luggage you
carry, you pay still at a cheaper rate too. So, many people like to travel
with their belongings by rail than by air.
3. It is less stressful: The stress a passenger needs to pass through before
boarding a flight is enormous. This is not so in rail transport, you don’t
need to have a stressful day before you can travel by rail.
4. Passengers enjoy fixed price: People also like to use rail transport
because of its relatively stable fares. They already know the amount
they are going to pay for their journey anytime, any day.
5. It is much more environmentally-friendly: the carbon emission from rail
transport is not as dangerous as the one coming out of an aircraft. This
is also one of the reasons why the government will also encourage
different organizations to use the rail transport for long-distance
journeys for their products than to use trucks or trailers.
6. It reduces travel time: High speed train can reduce your travel time by
half. In rail, you enjoy travel without unnecessary delay or traffic hold
7. Comfort and convenience: Trains these days are equipped with
comfortable seats that can make you feel relaxed without disturbing
anybody. You can move around during the journey to reduce the stress
of sitting down in a particular seat for hours. This is not possible in road
and air transport.
8. Free from traffic: People also like to travel by rail in order to avoid
unnecessary delay on the journey.
9. Travelling by rail, you will enjoy knowing more cities.
10. People like to travel by rail because it is safer than road transport and
the second safest mode of transport.
Transport system, as it were, is playing a key role in globally. Without transport,
moving people and goods from one place to another for economic, social and
other reasons will be difficult if not impossible. However, the transport system
that plays a very important role in over-land transport in moving people and
goods in large number is rail transport. In addition, in recent times, the rate of
crashes in rail transport is becoming worrisome and this explains the need for this
article. To this end, below is the list of rail accidents during the second quarter of
NOTE: each crash contains the date; the country where the accident occurred; the
kind of accident e.g. (crash) and the number of people killed or injured in the
1. April 8th in Russia (collision), 50 people injured.
2. April 15th in Austria (collision), 9 people injured.
3. April 28 th in Netherlands (collision), no record of people died or injured.
4. May 1 st in Germany (derailment), 2 people injured.
5. May 13th in Greece (derailment), 3 people died and 15 injured.
6. June 27th in US (derailment and fire), 39 people injured.
Total no people injured: 115. Total people killed: 3
Increase in rail accidents, around the world, is becoming worrisome these days, although it is still safer for one to travel by rail than by road. It is undeniable that in overland transport only the rail transport has the capacity to carry more goods and passengers than any other land transport. Therefore, the need to make our rail transport safer than before cannot be over-emphasized. However, here is the list of rail accidents around the world in the 1st quarter of 2017:
NOTE: each crash contains the date; the country where the accident occurred; the kind of accident e.g. (crash) and the number of people killed or injured in the accident.
January 4t h in the US, Brooklyn(train crash): at least 103 people injured.
January 21st in Indian: Kuneru train derailment: at least 41 people killed and 68 people injured.
January 24th in the US; A Front runner (collision): no one killed or injured.
February 14th in Australia; A V/Line Velocity(collision and derailment): 2 people injured.
February 14th in Luxembourg; (collision) 1 person killed and 2 people injured.
February 17th in Saudi Arabia (derailment due to flooding) 18 injured.
February 18th, in Belgium; Leuven derailment: 1 person killed and 27 people injured.
February 20th in South Africa; (collision) 100 people injured.
February 21st in the US; (derailment) 4 people injured.
February 28th in UK; 2017 Liverpool Lime Street collapse
March 7th in the US; (derailment) no one killed or injured.
March 7th in the US; 2017 Biloxi train crash, 4 people killed.
March 10th in the US; (derailment)
March 20th in UK (derailment)
March 22nd in Switzerland; (derailment), 6 people injured.
March 29th in India (derailment), 25 people injured.
Total no of people injured: 355; Total people killed: 47Source: Wikipedia
Rail accident is becoming worrisome these days; hardly will you see a week
without occurrence of rail accidents in the world. As transport demand for rail is
increasing day by day, so also there’s direct increase in rail operations or
activities, hence you see trains moving in different directions on their track and
since they share land with motorists and other road users e.g. cyclists, pedestrian
etc, the risk of people being involved in rail accident becomes inevitable.
For instance, in U.S. it was discovered that the train hits a person or a vehicle
every 3 hours and this accident always causes serious injuries or deaths. Source:
Beyond Our Rails.
However, it is important to know that these accidents are consequences of
human errors that deserve individual special attention because they are
preventable accidents. To this end, here are the ways to prevent rail accidents:
1. Be careful because rail has no inbuilt capacity to stop for you like a vehicle.
It takes not less than a mile or more for an average train traveling at 55
miles per hour to stop for you.
2. If your vehicle suddenly stops on a highway-rail crossing, probably due to
mechanical fault or for any other reason, you should let everybody move
out of the vehicle far away from the rail track, then you can call the
emergency number you see near the crossing or you call the law
enforcement. It is because the train cannot avoid any object on its track.
3. Do not use the rail track as a footpath with impunity; it is risky, it may cause
you your life, the train movement on its track is unpredictable.
4. Do not dare the speed of a moving train it may be faster than the way it
5. Do not cross immediately after a train; wait with patience to see if another
train is not moving in another direction.
6. Do not ignore the safety warning.
7. Do not jump out of a moving train
8. Always have it in mind that the train can move at anytime on its track.
9. Do not stop your vehicle on the track; before you cross make sure there is
enough space between your vehicle and the end of the track.
10. It does no harm to be safety conscious.
All over the world where rail transportation exists, the high demand for it cannot be denied. People like to travel by rail for both long and short distances within and outside the country. Rail transport is becoming more attractive and popular, mostly in Europe,North America and other parts of the world. Rail transport has been an effective means of transporting people and goods in their large number for over 10 decades.
In some countries such as India, North America, U.S., Canada, Japan,China to mention but few, it will not take you a longer time before you see trains in their large numbers in operation moving large number of people and goods along thousands of miles in both urban and rural areas. One may wonder why many people like to travel by rail.
In fact, in India, it will surprise you to see how many people patronize rail transport.It is a common sight in India to see many people in their large number hanging on the outside of the rail cars while hundreds of others sitting on top of rail cars, though this is not a good safety attitude in India yet.The question remains, why people like to travel by rail? Why do organizations these days also choose rail transport as a means of transporting their products? However, below are the notable reasons why people like to travel by rail:
It is economical:When you consider the long distance to be covered and the amount of goods to be carried, you will discover that rail transport is the right choice for you to use because it is cost-effective.Bulk freight rail transport has the capacity to pull the weight of over 10,000 tons of goods at a cheaper rate. As many organizations also look for ways to cut down transportation costs, hence, they use rail transport as a means to achieve this aim. Even governments in different countries also encourage their business owners to use rail transport for their products.
Some organizations that are into liquid and gas business also prefer to use rail transport because there are rail cars specially built to carry such products.
People also like to travel by rail because it is much cheaper than to travel by air.
It accommodates more baggage:Rail transport allows passengers to carry more bags without stress. People come with their baggage without unnecessary limitations and if you are to pay for much luggage you carry, you pay still at a cheaper rate too.So, many people like to travel with their belongings by rail than by air.
It is less stressful: The stress a passenger needs to pass through before boarding a flight is enormous. This is not so in rail transport, you don’t need to have a stressful day before you can travel by rail.
Passengers enjoy fixed price: People also like to use rail transport because of its relatively stable fares. They already know the amount they are going to pay for their journey anytime, any day.
It is much more environmentally-friendly: the carbon emission from rail transport is not as dangerous as the one coming out ofan aircraft. This is also one of the reasons why the government will also encourage different organizations to use the rail transport for long-distance journeys for their products than to use trucks or trailers.
It reduces travel time: High speed train can reduce your travel time by half. In rail, you enjoy travel without unnecessary delay or traffic hold up.
Comfort and convenience: Trains these days are equipped with comfortable seats that can make you feel relaxed without disturbing anybody. You can move around during the journey to reduce the stress of sitting down in a particular seat for hours.Thisis not possible in road and air transport.
Free from traffic: People also like to travel by rail in order to avoid unnecessary delay on the journey.
Travelling by rail, you will enjoy knowing more cities.
People like to travel by rail because it is safer than road transport and the second safest mode of transport.
Rail transport is the one of the overland transport in the world that uses rail track built on ground for its operations. Since, it’s one of the land based transportation, hence, it becomes paramount importance for all road users to be conscious and cautious when approaching any rail track.
In view of this, here are the simple safety tips you need to know on rail transportation:
Train has no specific time:
Many road users such as motorists, cyclists etc. aren’t always conscious of the fact that freight trains don’t have schedule time and that it can be on operation anytime, anyplace and anywhere. Therefore, it’s high risk for any road user to approach highway-rail crossing anyhow without being safety conscious and cautious.
Train cannot stopped immediately:
Although, a train has an emergency brake system, yet it can’t bring the train to an instant halt. In other words, the train has no kind of brake we have in motor vehicles that can bring a motor vehicle into an instant stoppage. So, don’t cross the rail track at will when the rail is fast approaching; it may be closer to you than how it really appears and more importantly, it does not have the capacity to stop for you like a car.
Train cannot diverge:
It’s very difficult, if not impossible, for train operators to avoid or diverge for any object, vehicle or person on its track. Trains are designed to follow their track to a desired location or destination. It operates like one way traffic, so to say. No flexibility, therefore, like I noted earlier, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for train operators to avoid an unwanted collision on its tracks. Hence, be careful when approaching a highway-rail crossing.
Don’t misjudge the train by ignoring the warnings at the level crossing:
Some level crossings are designed with safety warnings for all road users who intend to make use of the level crossing, but it’s worthy to note that some motorists and cyclists take such safety warnings for granted by misjudging the speed of a train. This may explain why some collision between a vehicle and a train occur occasionally, at the level crossing.
Don’t misjudging the speed of a train:
Often times, most road users erroneously assume that a locomotive train travels at a slow speed; hence, you see many of them daring the speed of a train approaching level crossing even though they hear the sound of the train from afar. This poor safety attitude may also lead to a collision at the level crossing.
Don’t use the rail tracks as your pedestrian facility:
It baffles me whenever I see pedestrians who deliberately decide to use the rail track as their foot path to their desired destinations. In fact, you see some of them trekking a reasonable distance on a rail track, and funny enough, they mistakenly believe that they could use the rail track as their footpath with impunity. This is a dangerous behavior, because the train can come in any direction and the pedestrians may be caught in an area that may be too difficult for them to avoid or escape the oncoming train.
Be watchful at a level crossing:
Finally, always be watchful for other trains when you are at a level crossing with more than one rail track. In addition, don’t cross the track immediately after a train; please wait to see if other train is not moving on the other rail tracks.
It pays to be safety conscious whenever you are at the level crossing.
In the African countries, mostly in the rural areas that are isolated by distance and difficult terrains, there is a tendency for an increase in the population of poor people. Often times, poverty comes as a result of poor or lack of transport infrastructure, such as rail, bridges and good roads that make it difficult, if not impossible for people in rural areas to access economic opportunities, marketplace, health care and education facilities. In fact, the aged and the disabled people extremely suffer for mobility.
In rural areas, roads and waterways are the most common means that connect different rural communities to market places and other economic opportunities; hence, proper attention must be given to them i.e. (roads and waterways) why? It’s because of the benefits and potentialities they have to reduce the extreme poverty in the African’s rural areas.
However, an improved mobility through transport investments and infrastructure are the important factors of developments with positive economic and social benefits. Truly speaking, adequate transport investments and infrastructure in African rural areas will eliminate hunger, improve education, reduce child mortality, improve maternal health and so on.
Many communities in rural areas in African countries engage in agriculture for their income generation. However, two of the ways to improve agricultural production in rural communities in Africa that will provide economic justification for their different countries are good transportation and transport infrastructure that will enhance easy mobility.
Nevertheless, most of the African’s poor population is living in rural communities that are isolated by distance and difficult terrains from markets, healthcare, education, employment, and other economic opportunities, causing extreme poverty for the people and low agricultural production. However, the major solutions to poverty in rural communities in African rural areas are good transport infrastructure and transport investments in rural communities.
Therefore, the transport national authorities in the African countries are expected to ensure that adequate resources are allocated for the construction and maintenance of rural roads and road infrastructure.
The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) estimates that there are over 3 million shipwrecks throughout the world at sea.
A wrecked ship refers to a destruction or loss of a ship at sea. However there are unwanted and unprecedented events that actually make a ship to become wrecked at sea. Some of these events are: heavy storm; bad weather; collision with another ship; when the ship strikes a rock or iceberg; poor design of a ship; poor arrangement of cargo; navigation, to mention but a few.
However, here are the notable shipwrecks in Africa:
A ship known as HMS Birken Head was sunk near Cape Town in South Africa.
In 1995, tourists discovered a shipwreck at Black Assarca.
A ship known as MV Mtongwe sunk on April 27, 1994, in Kenya.
A Greek oil tanker ship known as Katina P was sunk in Mozambique on April 26, 1992, caused by heavy storm.
On December, 1994, a fire accident caused a ship known as MS Achille Lauro to sink in Somalia territorial waters.
On September, 2011, a ship known as MV Spice Islander I was sunk in Somalia.
On May 21, 1996, in Mwanza area of Lake Victoria a ship known as MV Bukoba was sunk.
In addition, Lake Victoria in 2005, a ship known as MV kabaleja was sunk when it collided with another ship known as MV Kaawa in Ssese Island area.
On April 1st, 1999, a ship in Nigeria moving from Port-Harcourt to Nembe capsized.
On September 2002, a Senegalese passenger’s ship capsized near Gambia water territorial areas.
In conclusion, a shipwreck is always a great disaster and great loss that every marine company must try to avoid when preparing a ship for a journey. This is because a shipwreck may occur due to a human error and at times, it does occur accidentally. Nonetheless, every marine sailor must not throw safety into the wind when travelling by sea.
A bus-stop shelter is one of the important transport infrastructure designed for both passengers and commercial vehicles to “set down” and ‘pick up’ passenger. It is usually build on a public road with roof and inbuilt seats for passengers. It is an important infrastructure purposely made for passenger’s safety.
It is interesting to note that some of these bus- stop shelters are gradually becoming luxury, apartment for lunatics in Nigeria, thereby, making it so difficult and unpleasant to be used by public.
Often times, I wonder at my observation when I see a mad man making use of transport infrastructures on our public roads without being checked. A time you see them using road side as their inevitable apartment and a times you may see them using round about facilities as their dwelling place. So, one may wonder if all these public transport infrastructures are alternative means for lunatics to live
However, since many of these mentally ill people sharing the same road with pedestrians, hence, little will it baffle you when you see some of them making use of bus-stop shelter, road-side and round about infrastructure as their dwelling place? In all honesty, this is an eye sore on our public roads. I think, it is unacceptable to every Nigerian. It is not pleasant to the ears, to the eye and to the sense of reason. Hence, the saying two wrong things can never make a right.
Furthermore, in a society where many insane people are allowed to move anyhow on our public road, this often has a negative effect on our environment.
For instance on August 17, 2016, the writer of this article was listening to daily newspaper review on one of the radio stations in Nigeria, when he heard the story of a mad man who hit a pedestrian very hard on the head with iron, it was reported that the victim was bleeding from the head when he was quickly rushed to the hospital for treatment.
More so, in 2013, precisely on Christmas day, a woman, her 4 children and 5 other people were killed when a container fell on a stationary commuter bus at Alaba Suru in Lagos. It was revealed that the truck driver was trying to avoid killing a mad man who slept on the road when the container it carried fell from the truck.
In addition, some years back the writer was a witness on how a mad man was beaten mercilessly by motorist and passengers in Ibadan tollgate along Lagos/Ibadan expressway. Why? It was said that the mad man suddenly threw a big stone at oncoming vehicle from Lagos, this explains why the windshield was damaged and a passenger in the front seat sustained serious injury on the head. The simple truth is that a mad man on public road is a dangerous man.
The rise in number of insane people on public roads is due to lack of adequate special institution that can house the insane people in our society, thereby, causing social problem on our roads and reducing the bus-stop shelter as luxury their apartment.
However, provision of specialist institution by the government for mentally ill people in our society can never be over emphasized in this regards.
In Nigeria today in most cases madness is mostly the problem of the families concern and if such families are unable to care and control the insane or house them they let them alone, moving around the street and on the public roads. Consequently, we have many mad people around us that are violently and highly disturbing.
Social welfare board or the authority concern at all level of the government in the country have obligations and duties to prevent or make our public roads to be free from environmental harm and nuisance that are likely to cause by mentally deficient people.
The authority concern in Nigeria is expected to provide adequate public mental asylum where all these insane people can be housed for better compassionate care and moral treatment that will enhance rehabilitation of the insane rather than allowing them to move around the public road aimlessly, thereby causing social problem on our roads.
To this end, the authorities concern from all level of government in Nigeria must play a key role, through legal and financial means to implement and enforce decision that will make our public roads and transport infrastructures and all road users free from environmental harm and nuisance that are likely to cause by mentally deficient people.
Nevertheless, as I observed the increase of mentally deficient people on our public roads so also, is the concern about their harmful effects to human health and the environment at large become, highly worrisome. Therefore, the social welfare board or the authority concern and transport authorities at all level in Nigeria are humbly but firmly called through this platform to formulate road transport environmental safety policy that will contribute to the sustainable economic development, health and safety of all road users by maintaining and improving the quality of our public roads and transport infrastructures.
There are many causes of road accidents involving haulage trucks and tanker trucks in Nigeria but one of the major causes is poor safety attitude of the truck owners and truck drivers towards road safety. Road transport system, as it were, is an important element in economic growth. Surprisingly, it is also a great problem that affects the growth of the economy of a nation and the lives of the citizens at large.
For instance, in 2006 to 2013, 41,118 deaths were recorded in Nigeria from road accidents. Source: FRSC. In addition, in 2014, World Health Organization (WHO) showed that Nigeria had the highest road fatalities with 33,700 out of every 100,000 segments every year.
Without any iota of doubt, road transport is an indispensable element; yet it is a great problem that is fast depleting human resources.
However, in the world today, there are several reasons or causes of road traffic crashes involving haulage and tanker trucks that may appear not to be a direct mistake or fault of the truck drivers.
However, in Nigeria there are common notable causes of road traffic crashes involving haulage trucks. They are common events mostly identified by FRSC that give rise to large truck crashes on Nigerian roads. These are:
Dangerous driving and reckless or careless driving.
Undue transportation business- driven factor
Dangerous and reckless driving
Reckless or careless driving is a notable cause of road accidents. This is said to occur when truck drivers drive on the roads without reasonable consideration for other road users, most especially car drivers or drivers of smaller vehicles.
Dangerous driving, on the other hands, simply means an act of a motorist that leads to a fatal or serious accident. In other words, it is unsafe driving of a motorist that leads to the death of other road users. The simple difference between dangerous driving and reckless driving is that dangerous driving actually leads to an accident while reckless driving is a bid for an accident to occur.
A truck driver is said to drive dangerously when the way he drives is totally different from what should be expected from a complete careful driver and such an act must be clearly noticeable to other motorists that the way such trucker or driver drives on the road is highly dangerous to other motorists.
However, there are some avoidable acts which are rampant among truck drivers in Nigeria and which can easily lead to dangerous driving. These include:
Driving too fast for road condition.
Lack of good understanding of simple road signs and traffic rules
Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol
Driving at a time when there is need to rest, most especially during festive periods.
Distraction in any form while driving.
Nevertheless, the statistics given by FRSC shows that 1,767 haulage and tanker trucks were involved in road accidents in 2009. The said statistics also shows that 1,085 people died while 3,714 people were seriously injured from the said accidents.
It is worthy of note that out of 1,767 road traffic crashes involving haulage trucks and tanker drivers in 2009, 292 accidents were caused by dangerous driving of truck drivers.
Going by FRSC statistics, it is obvious that from January to June 2010, a total number of 1,427 haulage and tanker trucks were involved in road accidents out of which Nigeria recorded 965 deaths while 3,220 people were seriously injured. The given statistics also shows that out of the said accidents, 265 accidents were related to speed violation.
Another unwanted act that can necessitate road traffic accidents in Nigeria is over speeding. It is not only motorists with smaller vehicles that do over speed on our public roads. Observations from individuals and organizations also show that haulage and tanker drivers also showcase their speed on the highway especially when the trucks are empty.
According to the U.S Census Bureau “in 2008, there were 37, 261 speed related traffic fatalities in U.S” Sources The Pulse.
Going by the given statistics, it becomes clear that over speed is a serious common problem in road transportation that needs an urgent attention not only in the developing countries but also in the developed countries.
Over speeding is an act or instance where a motorist deliberately decides to move his vehicle faster than what it is allowed by law. However, beyond this scope of definition, I see over speeding as an act of someone or motorist who moves the vehicle too fast for the road condition.
Tyre burst / violation
According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the U. S between 2009 and 2013, there were over 19,000 fatal crashes in the U.S involving heavy trucks and buses which killed almost 16,000 people. It is noted that tyres were a factor in 198 of these crashes and caused the death of 223 people.
From the above paragraph, it is clearly noticeable that road traffic accidents involving haulage and tanker trucks are also caused by tyre burst or tyre safety violation. It is important to note that tyres are designed in relation to a particular recommended speed by the manufacturer. Many truckers are ignorant of this fact; hence, they run their trucks at a speed above the recommended speed by the manufacturer. This may reduce the life expectancy of the tyre. Truly speaking, many truckers lack the necessary information on the tyres that carry them around.
For instance, in 2012, Vistal Press and Distribution Logistics Limited, a company, in Nigeria, in collaboration with Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), carried out an exercise at some motor parks to know if motorists comply with manufacturer’s recommended tyre air pressures. However, the result of the exercise showed that many of the motorists in Nigeria did not even know that their vehicles had any manufacturer’s recommended safety air pressures. Hence, they allow the roadside vulcanizers to determine their vehicle air pressures for them who are equally clueless about such information.
The manufacturer’s recommended safety air pressures are very important because it is the air pressure inside the tyre that actually supports or carries the weight or the load on the vehicle not the black round shape object around the wheel. Tyres are made primarily to contain compressed air pressures needed to carry the weight on the vehicle around.
Another important aspect to emphasize is the matching air pressures for dual assemble tyres. If one of the dual assemble tyres is inflated greater than the other tyre, probably by ‘4 psi or 6 psi’, the implication is that the tyre with greater compressed air pressure will be larger in terms of perimeter or circumference, therefore bearing the weight or the load alone. The result of this is that it will reduce the life expectancy of the tyre with greater air pressure. why? It is because the tyre with less air pressure will not have proper traction on the road.
Furthermore, in 2008, 1,655 haulage and tanker trucks were involved in road accidents in which 1,221 lives were lost while 3,891 people sustained various degrees of injury. The statistics showed that in the said road traffic accidents which involved 1,655 trucks, 108 of them were caused by tyre burst / violation. Source: FRSC.
Nonetheless, there are three most notable reasons why good maintenance of your tyre matters most in road transportation. They are highlighted as follows:
It is in the best interest of your safety and that of others.
It increases the life span of the tyres in your vehicle.
It increases the fuel economy.
Road accidents, in Nigeria, in 2009, involving haulage and tanker trucks were 1,767 accidents. However, out of the given figures i.e (1,767 accidents), 106 accidents were identified as obstructions related accidents. Source: FRSC.
An obstruction, as it were, is any object or anything that affects or hinders the free flow of traffic. With this simple understanding, it implies that obstructions to traffic on road may occur or appear in different forms. Hence, following are the forms of obstructions to road traffic:
Vehicles involving in a road accident.
Breaking down of vehicles in the middle of the road.
Unconventional road signs: it is a common practice among some motorists in Nigeria, seeing them putting weeds behind their broken down vehicles as a sign of caution but when their vehicles are fixed up later, they quickly drive away the vehicles leaving the weeds on the roads. This is an eye sore on public roads.
Any object that falls on the road. e.g trees, electricity poles etc.
Unauthorized vendors and traders encroaching on the road.
A lunatic or an animal e.g. cow, walking in the middle of the road.
Pothole: you can imagine an over loaded truck driver in a bid to evade potholes, such a vehicle may pose a serious danger to other road users.
Refuse dumped on the road:
However, in some advanced nations, there are agencies with responsibility to ensure that the public road network is free from obstructions and it is also a punishable offence under the law if one is found guilty e.g in the U.S; North Ireland; etc. So, this will show to you that any of the obstructions is a serious problem that can make the public road unsafe to road users.
Brake failure and overloading violation
Brake failure is one of the major causes of accidents involving large and tanker trucks in Nigeria.
From January to June 2010, 1, 427 trucks were said to be involved in road traffic crashes (RTC) and 3,220 people were injured while 965 people were killed in just 6 months due to brake failure and overloading violation.
Brake failure can simply be caused by negligence on the part of the trucker and faulty installation.
Overloading, on the other hand, is when a truck is used to carry load that exceeds its original capacity; such a truck is prone to accidents. Let us imagine a driver of an overloaded heavy truck in a bid to evade one pothole and the other on the highway. Such a truck may pose a serious danger to other road users.
Moreover, overloading can cause the brake system of a truck to work harder and then get hotter than necessary. Consequently, these may lead to poor braking performance. It is also important to let you know that a typical articulated vehicle has nothing less than 10 brakes to work with and if any of these brakes loses its braking power, probably due to overloading of the truck or brake mis-adjustment or faulty installation, the brake load will be automatically transferred to the remaining brakes which consequently makes them to over work and with time, this may lead to a complete brake failure. If the brake of an overloaded truck on a sloppy highway suddenly loses its stopping power due to overloading, it is only God that can arrest the motion of such an overloaded truck. Truck overloading is dangerous and it is one the notable factors identified by FRSC as accounting for truck accidents and deaths on Nigerian roads.
Undue Transport Business-driven factor
It is important to note that some haulage transport company or truck owners allow their drivers to over work, most especially when there’s a rise in transport demand. It is obvious that there’s always an increase in transport demand during any festive period in Nigeria and this explains why there is a high rate of road accidents at such a time. For instance, in 2016, during an Easter break, Nigeria recorded 98 crashes and 77 deaths in road accidents. Source: FRSC Boss.
When there is a high demand for transport, what some transport companies or truck owners do in order to meet the demand is to increase the allowances for their drivers. Hence, those drivers who erroneously assume they are the most hit by the present economic situations in the country agree to go for as many trips as possible so as to make more money without such drivers having adequate rest and planning before embarking on their next trips. Consequently, you see many of them on the road driving for more than 16 hours without rest. Such truck drivers are always impatient on the road rushing to make more money.
When you allow a man to over work, this may lead to fatigue and sleeplessness. One can imagine the risks that may be involved when a truck driver suddenly falls asleep behind the wheel.
It is needless to say that journeys with longer durations must be carefully organized and planned for safety purpose.
Nevertheless, all the mentioned causes of road accidents involving haulage and tanker trucks in Nigeria can be traced to human factor. Therefore, they are avoidable accidents if all motorists and other road users can rise up to the task of making the road safer. Definitely, the high rate of road accidents involving haulage and tanker trucks will drastically reduce and consequently, the high rate of deaths and injuries usually sustained by victims will also be reduced. It is always good to be safety conscious.
A reason why railway was established in Nigeria
Rail transport is the movement of people and goods by using a wheeled transport vehicle, which is made to move on a railway track. In Nigeria during colonial era when railway transport was first established, the primary aim of its establishment was to evacuate agric produce in Nigeria. Since, railway transport has the capacity to carry goods in large quantity; its establishment was fully considered by then.
However, nowadays I see more reasons why railway transport system must be established in most countries especially in Nigeria where there are huge number of unemployed youths. One of the reasons among others is that railway transport system can create direct and indirect jobs for thousands of people. I hope if unemployment problem can be solved or reduced to barest minimum it will give a better life to many Nigerians and it will help the nation’s economy.
Meaning of unemployment
Unemployment is a common problem in the world today. It is a major social problem that is affecting many youths in different parts of the world most especially in Africa. Unemployment happens when a man who is ready and able to work is searching for an employment over a period of time and he’s unable to find or get employment. Better still, it is when someone of working age is seriously looking for a paid work for weeks or months or years. However, the national unemployment rate in many countries is determined by the percentage of unemployed people in the total labour force.
Unemployment and its consequences
When a man is unemployed his family suffers for lack of money and he will not be able to contribute meaningfully to the economy of a nation at large, when it comes to service and production of goods. More so, unemployed people lack purchasing power and this may also lead to unemployment for other people, when goods and services are not properly or well patronized by fairly large number of people due to unemployment, the producers and the providers of such goods and services may fold up. Furthermore, militancy and other crimes in Nigeria have been linked to high rate of unemployed youths in the country. Hence, the saying, an idle hand is the devil’s work shop. Therefore, high rate of unemployment is a great problem and high risk in any given country that must be addressed.
Financial distress is one of the direct consequences of unemployment, when getting a new job takes a longer time or period job searching becomes more difficult for the job seekers and it may lead to financial worries and anger, these may also explain why some of unemployed youths are involved in undesirable crime in the society
When you consider a lot of challenges job seekers have to face in Nigeria, most especially when they are being deceived and defrauded by employment agencies, then I hope you will agree with me that the high rate of unemployed youths in Nigeria needs more urgent attention better than before.
I personally discovered that transport generally as it were is a great source of employment in any given nation. However, I will like to talk on just mode of transport that can provide thousands of direct jobs to unemployed youths. This mode of transport is railway transport system. It is a special mode of transport that must not be undermined because it has the capacity to provide hundred thousand of jobs if properly maintained. However, at this point, it is important to look at some railway transport companies and their staff strength by this you will agree that railway transport is capable to provide thousands of jobs to thousands of people.
Early days of Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC)
“According to Jetson Nwakwo, managing director of the NRC said the company had employed 45,000 people between 1954 and 1975, current employment is only 6,516.” If a single organization as at 1975, provided direct jobs for 45,000 people and the figure for indirect jobs were not inclusive or mentioned, you can now imagine the number of direct and indirect jobs such a single company is likely to provide by now, if it’s properly maintained.
Kenya Government plans to tackle unemployment.
Kenya Government is planning very hard to reduce the number of unemployed citizen in their country through a viable railway transport system.
“The new proposed railway deal in Kenya is expected to create more than 30,000 new direct jobs for Kenyans, while it also has the potential to provide 13,000 indirect jobs through the local companies that are expected to supply local materials and the services needed for the venture.” Source: Daily Nation. Indian Railway the 7th largest employer in the world
It is interesting to know that in whole world, railway transport system is the7th largest employer of labour. The name of the railway company is India Railway. It has 1.334 million employees in 2014. Source: Wikipedia. When a single company employed over one million people, you can also imagine indirect jobs such company will also provide for people in its environment.Pakistan Railways: The Pakistan Railways also provides employment to large number of her citizens, the company employed 82,424 people between year 2010 and 2011. Source: Wikipedia.
Russian Railways: The Russian Railways was established in 18th of September, 2003. However, as at 31st of December, 2011, the company employed 942, 808 people. Source: Wikipedia. Other Railway Transport Companies and their Staff Strength
The following companies are rail-manufacturing companies in the world and they also run a railway transport system, hence, it is important to look at the number of direct jobs they provided in each of the company for better understanding.
Bombardier: It is a Canadian company that has 33,800 rail-related employees as at early year of 2010. You can also imagine what the figure will be by now. Railway transport is a major source of employment.
Alstom: This is a company that has its headquarters in France, and in its transport division, it has 27,000 employees.
Siemens: This is a German company that has 19,000 employees in its transport division.
China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock (CSR): Is a China base company it has about 112,000 employees.
China Northern Locomotive and Rolling Stock: It is also one of the rail manufacturing companies that have more than 100,000 employees.
Sourcecredited to:Global Competitiveness in the Rail and Transit Industry by: Michael Renner and Gary Gardner.
Without a nagging doubt, the existence of mode rail infrastructure in above given countries is a significant source of employments, that makes important contribution to improve quality of life of thousands of people, by providing jobs in thousands to unemployed youths and boosting the economy. Therefore, my earlier assertion that railway transport system is a notable solution to unemployment is not an over statement but, a stark truth.
There are five (5) transport modes and main purpose of each of them is to give support to mobility. This explains why mobility is important in our daily activities. Mobility and transport infrastructure are closely related; hence, without mobility, transport infrastructure will be useless and without transport infrastructure; mobility will be difficult if not possible. However, this interdependency between mobility and transport infrastructure is associated to two (2) concepts in transport which are transport demand and supply.
Transportation can be referred to as a market that involves two parties which are: the suppliers of transport services and the users of these services, therefore, the demand and the supply of transport is inevitable in transport market.
In addition, for transport market to function very well, transport demand must be met, so as to satisfy transport needs for mobility. In transportation market, transport companies or individual transport provider offers transport services to transport users who require such services, often on open markets. Nevertheless, the transport users pay for the services delivered according to the journey of the agreed contract.
What is transport demand? Transport demand occurs when a transport user is willing and able to pay a transport fare or particular amount of money based on the two parties’ agreement for a specific transport service. It is also refers to how much of a transport service is desired by transport users at various transport fares (price). Nevertheless, transport demand can be measured in numbers of journey made.
Factors influencing transport demand
Movement of people and good occur for different reasons at different times. There are several factors that influence the demand for transport mode such factors can be grouped into three (3) categories; they are:
Transport demand can be influenced by demographic group of people such as age, old, gender etc. It also includes socio-economics, personal reference and so on.
Transport demand can be influenced by the number of people going to their place of work, people visiting tourist and recreation centers; education; shopping and so on, are all factors that can affect the demand for transportation.
Transportation system is another factor that can influence transport demand. This include available travel routes, available transport mode, road and transit network, cost of travel, transport fare, travel condition, auto operating cost, reliability of service, to mention but a few.
What is Transport Supply?
Transport supply is the amount of transport services a transport company or individual transport provider is able to provide at a particular given time and on agreed fare (cost).
Factors influencing transport supply
Types and characteristics of goods
The bulk, the weight and the value of goods may determine the mode and kind of transport needed for particular goods.
The Cost of freight
The origin and destination of goods and available transport
The distance of the journey: e.g. Inter-regional, Trans Ocean, Continent etc.
Urgency and reliability of delivery, convenience, efficiency of travel, including modal transfer.
In conclusion, it is important to note that transport system behavior is always according to transport demand and supply that can be influenced by cost variation.