Metrolink tram on the streets of Manchester
Metrolink tram on the streets of Manchester
Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) has appointed leading rolling stock engineering consultancy DB ESG to deliver its tram safety improvement programme (image: TfGM) 
Nick Goodhand, Managing Director at DB ESG, said, 'We are pleased to be working with TfGM to deliver their critical Tram Safety Improvement Programme to implement the RAIB recommendations. The Tram Overspeed Protection System introduces an additional level of safety without impact to the normal service delivery or performance of the tram network.' 
Rob Nield, Business Development Manager at Sella Controls (the system developers), said: 'Following the successful delivery of the UK's first SIL2 Light Rail Overspeed Prevention System, we are pleased to once again work closely with DB ESG and TfGM to deliver this solution.' 
In order to further improve the safety of their tram system, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) and the Metrolink Operator - KeolisAmey Metrolink (KAM) have appointed DB ESG to help ensure the safety of passengers, drivers and other road users by intalling new Driver Vigilance Devices (DVD) and Tram Overspeed Protection Systems (TOPS) to their existing fleet of trams.  
Since the tragic event in Sandilands, Croydon, where a tram overturned, the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) recommended that light rail programmes deliver programmes to prevent the risk of serious accidents - caused by tram over-speeding or driver inattention.  
Metrolink's fleet are already fitted with a device that applies the emergency brake in the event of a driver becoming incapacitated and these new systems will provide an extra layer of safety.  
Through the use of GPS positioning (as well as other systems), the driver will be alerted in the case of over-speeding and, if there is no response, the brakes are applied automatically. In additon, the traction brake system will be upgraded to request input from the driver if no movement is detected.  
TfGM's Head of Metrolink, Danny Vaughan, said, 'The safety of our customers and staff are paramount, which is why we have robust safety and assurance practices built into thedesign, construction, operation and maintenance of the network. 
Metrolink has an exemplary safety record, but following the tragedy in Croydon - and theough the subsequent RAIB recommendations - we have taken steps to enhance this even further and have played an industry-leading role by participating in trials of innovative technology to monitor driver attention and vehicle over-speeding.  
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