Extrication Zone

Light Rail Incidents: From Response to Extrication

Issue 1 and Volume 163.

BY JASON BLOUNT Responses to motor vehicle crashes (MVCs) in and of themselves continue to challenge responders with various issues such as design features and safety systems that are ever changing. When these incidents also involve a commuter light rail vehicle (LRV), they can be much more complex and present higher risks. Unlike the majority of automobiles, the 50-ton light railcars are not easy to stabilize or manipulate with our standard extrication tools and techniques. Having a good understanding of these commuter systems and the challenges they present to your department is necessary when planning for and responding to these incidents.   WHAT IS LIGHT RAIL?   Light rail systems (LRSs) and other similar commuter rails are integrated transit systems found around the world that run through business and residential areas. They often share traffic with automobiles and pedestrians. In many cities, these systems link vital parts of cities, allowing…

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