Backrest table design for railway coach interior occupant protection

Marta Carvalho, João Milho

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


The study presented, in this paper, concerns the analysis of the backrest table design during crashes of railway vehicles, focusing on the protection of the occupants of the railway coach interiors. A railway accident is described by the primary collision, in which the vehicle is subjected to an abrupt deceleration causing the unrestrained occupants to continue the original motion. Then the occupants are projected through the vehicle until the secondary collision occurs by their contact with some part of the interior of the vehicle or with other occupants. The strategy combines and explores the already developed railway structures for crashworthiness with injury biomechanics. The methodology attends the railway accidents specificities such as the existence of restraints and the larger distance between contact features, which decreases the predictability on the kinematics of the occupants. Due to its importance in terms of railway vehicle interiors, the inline seating with backrest table being used is investigated in order to identify the potential sources of injury for railway occupants. The analysis is made using a numerical model of a reference simulation scenario characterized by the seating pitch of the first class coach. Simulation results suggest design modifications that are discussed in the scope of the reduction of the biomechanical injury indices for the occupants.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Fifteenth International Conference on Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering Computing
EditorsJ. Kruis, Y. Tsompanakis, B.H:V. Topping
PublisherCivil-Comp Press, Stirlingshire, UK
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • railway
  • crashworthiness
  • passive safety
  • simulation
  • injury
  • biomechanics


Dive into the research topics of 'Backrest table design for railway coach interior occupant protection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this