The whole kit and caboodle: Applying a systems analysis and design framework across the rail level crossing design lifecycle

Paul Salmon, Gemma Jennie Megan Read, Michael Graeme Lenne, Christine Maree Mulvihill, Nicholas Stevens, Guy Harrison Walker, Kristie Lee Young, Neville Anthony Stanton

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review


The continued incidence of trauma at rail level crossings is unacceptable, and provides a clear indication that the current approach to rail level crossing safety is failing. It has been suggested that this may be, in part, attributed to the fact that a systems thinking approach has not been adopted when attempting to improve rail level crossing designs. As a response, this paper presents an overview of a rail level crossing design lifecycle process that involved applying Cognitive Work Analysis to analyze existing rail level crossing systems, and then to generate, evaluate, and refine new rail level crossing design concepts underpinned by systems thinking. An overview of the process adopted is provided and selected outputs from the following phases are discussed: systems analysis; generation of design concepts, evaluation of design concepts, and refinement of design concepts. In closing, the implications for future rail level crossing design activities are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Fifth International Rail Human Factors Conference
Place of PublicationLondon UK
PublisherRail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB)
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventInternational Conference on Rail Human Factors 2015 - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 14 Sept 201517 Sept 2015
Conference number: 5th


ConferenceInternational Conference on Rail Human Factors 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • Systems ergonomics
  • Level crossings safety
  • design and operation
  • Resilience engineering and rail system design trade-offs

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