Information published on 10 May 2016 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 497.

Poland: PKP Polish Railway Lines is developing a modern Crossing Keeper Support System

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Safety improvement on the railway network, improvement in the flow of railway traffic as well as enhanced work comfort – PKP Polish Railway Lines is developing a modern Crossing Keeper Support System for more than one million PLN. An online overview of rail traffic has already been implemented on almost 400 crossing keeper posts across Poland.

The main objective of the Crossing Keeper Support System (SWDP) is safety improvement. Assisted by complete information on railway traffic visible on a screen, a crossing keeper is aware of any situation on the railway line. This results in the ability to make decisions concerning safety on track and road crossings with increased knowledge.

How does SWDP work?
A crossing keeper working on a railway-road crossing has direct influence on the safety of both passengers and drivers. They receive information on road barrier closures directly from rail traffic controllers. The SWDP, in addition to the information provided by a controller, records data on trains which are to pass through an operated post – that’s the digital format of information on timetables and possible exceptions to them as well as on renewal works being carried out on railway lines.
Information is transferred wirelessly by means of the GSM network signal. Thanks to that system failures has been limited and the cost of development has been cut – it is now unnecessary to lay hundreds of kilometres of cable. Devices assembled at control points are easy to install, are characterised by a low failure frequency, and consume eightfold less electricity than an ordinary computer.

In 2014 a pilot project was carried out on 23 operating control points, testing the functioning of the application as well as new means of data transmission. Half-year tests enabled us to positively verify new solutions, introduce modifications and improvements. In 2015 some equipment was installed at control points.
Application prepared by the IT Department of PKP PLK is transparent and easy to operate and information included is transferred clearly and legibly. In the crossing keepers’ opinion, the tool is very comfortable to use and facilitates the fulfilment of duties.

Work is being carried out to equip further control points and make the system useful for passing information on railway traffic to other posts connected with traffic operation and safety.
The project cost almost PLN 1.4 million.

(Source: PKP SA)