Tricks to keep people off the tracks

The Railways is planning to initiate multiple measures, including applying few experiments that were carried out in Mumbai to deter people from straying on railway tracks to prevent deaths due to train hits in Bangalore division.

Divisional Railway Manager Anil Kumar Agarwal said, “Besides initiating various measures, we are experimenting on certain things with some advice from Biju Dominic, a cognitive neural science expert who teaches

in London School of Economics and has done considerable research in minimising the deaths caused by train hits in Mumbai.”

We are trying to apply some of the concepts of cognitive neural science to deter people from recklessly going near the tracks and we have applied such concepts near one of the level crossings between Bangalore and Chickballapur on an experimental basis.”

How it works According to Dominic, human mind is blessed with a capacity to envisage things that happen in the immediate future by seeing certain images and that capacity is called future seeing.

When a person sees a image of speeding train his inherent fear of getting hit by the train starts working on him and he starts envisaging a series of things related to train hits. When he sees the second image of the train his cognitive faculties tell him that the train is coming towards him from a very close distance and that automatically makes him cautious. By the time he sees the image of the terrified face enough inherent fear would have been aroused in him to envisage that he is about to be hit by the train and that makes him cautious.

Dominic said, “Most often the train hit victims are those who recklessly stray on to the railway tracks though they are accustomed to walking on railway tracks due to over confidence or carelessness. Therefore, we applied the future seeing concept at a particular stretch that was known for highest incidents of train hit deaths near Wadala Railway Station in Mumbai and it proved successful.”

Earlier, 30 to 35 people used to die every year due to train hits and that reduced drastically immediately after we erected these posters. In the first six months only nine people died in the next six months only one person died.”

Agarwal said, “We are planning to distribute booklets to caution the commuters about the dangers of straying on tracks in and around the city. Four foot bridges would be constructed at Bangalore East, Whitefield, K R Puram and Malleswaram railway stations to enable the commuters to cross the tracks without straying on them.”

Published in: on January 12, 2013 at 5:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

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