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Schneeberger, Paul

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Neue Zürcher Zeitung - Switzerland | 26/07/2013

Automatisation increases safety

The driver of the train that crashed in Santiago de Compostela has admitted according to media reports to driving the train far too fast. Extending the security system technology is the only means to offset human error, writes the liberal-conservative Neue Zürcher Zeitung: "With track-bound transportation like trains, this means automatisation. It doesn't mean switching entire state rail networks to fully automatic operation, with humans taking over only when the system fails. But at tricky intersections safety measures will no doubt be extended to steering as well as monitoring trains. The technological possibilities for this already exist. The first clear steps in this direction are being taken in England, which learned lasting structural lessons from a series of serious train crashes at the turn of the millennium, so that the trains in this country are again among those least frequently involved in major rail accidents today."

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