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Project title

ADHERE: Managing driver behaviours through adhesion-related information flows (T1156)

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Project Summary

The project engaged with a number of train operating companies to assess and evaluate the adhesion-related information provided to train drivers and propose changes and/or additions to enable more confident driving during the leaf fall season.

Project Abstract

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Low adhesion at the wheel/rail interface is a persistent problem that is faced by the GB railway. The GB rail industry invests considerable resource to manage adhesion but, despite these efforts, low adhesion issues have a significant financial impact on industry and wider society. One effect of low adhesion is its impact on train drivers’ behaviour, which can reduce driver confidence and morale, and potentially contribute to significant delays during the leaf fall season. Therefore we want to improve our understanding of: what information the driver needs in low adhesion conditions, how the current information provided influences how trains are driven, and what can be improved.

Via targeted engagement with a number of train operating companies and freight operating companies, the project team:
• collated adhesion-related information and undertake an evaluation from a usability and usefulness perspective
• engaged with driver managers, driver trainers and operations standards managers to identify what adhesion-related information train drivers receive; when they receive it; the types of format used; management attitudes and practices that may influence driver perceptions and behaviours related to adhesion; which mechanisms (levers) are available to manage driver behaviours; and the barriers to delivering useful and useable adhesion-related information
• engaged with a representative sample of drivers to assess how adhesion-related information is perceived; how the information is used in practice; and barriers to using information flows
• proposed changes and/or additions that form a toolkit of options to make the information more useful and usable to enable drivers to drive more confidently.

This project is part of the ‘Driver Behaviours’ workstream of the ADHEsion REsearch challenge (ADHERE) set out to achieve ‘adhesion conditions that are unaffected by and independent of the weather and climate’.

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