Calif.’s Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT) will receive a grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for $870,000 to add a secondary warning system to increase safety of employees in light rail work zones. With the funds, RT will develop, implement, and test a system providing a three-way communication among workers on the track, train operators, and dispatchers in the central office.

The funding will allow RT to deploy the technology across the entire light rail fleet, which will fully demonstrate its functionality, reliability, and utility on an active light rail system.

“The current technology alerts the worker when a train is entering a work zone and the train operator of an upcoming work zone,” said Henry Li, RT GM/CEO. “This grant will fund all of that plus technology that will include the rail controller so that the worker, operator, and the controller are all notified of a train approaching an established work zone.”

Working with Protran Technology, a Harsco Rail Co., equipment will be installed in RT’s entire fleet of light rail vehicles and up to 60 Track Workers will be supplied with a smart device and/or an upgraded wearable warning device.

RT will ensure that the project includes a data capture component that allows for the collection of information that is reliable, consistent, and relevant in gauging the impact and outcomes of the demonstration so interested agencies and FTA will be able to have access to the data, evaluating the program’s effectiveness.

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