Bombardier Transportation has received approval for its new anti-collision drivers assistance system (DAS) for passenger service in Germany.
Trams equipped with the new tram safety platform will enter service starting in August in Frankfurt am Main.
The DAS gives trams drivers advanced warning of a potential impact with pedestrians, bikers, other vehicles or objects obstructing the tram tracks.
In order to identify and track the movement of objects on or near a tram’s path, the DAS system uses a network of stereovision cameras and if a potential collision be identified, it issues an audio alert for the tram driver and can even perform an automatic braking function.
The new safety technology complements the company’s recently developed BodyGuard, a type of external airbag for trams that prevents pedestrians from being trapped under a moving tram, which is typically the cause for the most serious injuries.
The company said that the DAS technology was made possible with technical support from the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Frankfurt am Main’s transport authority the Verkehrsgesellschaft Frankfurt am Main (VFG), who provided testing opportunities.
After securing the approval from the technical supervisory authority, VFG’s vehicle no. 272 is now the first tram in the world to operate normal service equipped with DAS.
The tram is currently being used for training and VGF will soon equip its other 73 ‘S’ tramcars with the DAS, making the Frankfurt fleet the first to be completely equipped with this new safety technology and the upgrade is scheduled to run until December next year.
Image: The DAS gives trams drivers advanced warning of a potential impact with objects obstructing the tram tracks. Photo: courtesy of Bombardier Transportation.