HS2: Improvements to the Platform-Train Interface

September 26, 2018
by Derek Hirst

To support the wider HS2 requirement for improved Inclusivity and Accessibility on its network, we undertook an investigation to find the optimum boarding and alighting solution for the new HS2 trains.

On the UK mainline network there is always a horizontal gap and at least one vertical step between the platform and the train – which causes problems for many passengers, including wheelchair users, those with other mobility aids, people with larger items of luggage, families with buggies, pushchairs and/or toddlers, and others.

We undertook an investigation of the technologies available for bridging the gap between the platform and the train, then commissioned a full-scale test rig to model these solutions.  Using a cross-section of disabled rail users, we trialled a number of possible configurations to determine the range of acceptable ‘gaps’ and ‘steps’ and provide a recommended optimal solution for the HS2 passenger train.