If you ranked the vehicles in order of importance, where would the trains end up? It is a very comfortable way of public transport important for both passengers and freight, but fewer consider trains to be indispensable. Still, their story is very long and interesting, and the technology itself is surprising.
Never Delayed Trains in Japan
You have probably heard that the trains in Japan are extremely punctual and they are never late. But you can never say never, because sometimes there are sad accidents, for example, suicides. This, of course, stops the operation of the train line and the train is forced to be late, no matter how efficient the system would be. Such suicides must therefore be deterred. Some train stations and companies in Japan are reported to take the family of the suicide person to the court. As horrible as it may sound, huge fines and strict law are meant to deter people from doing so. Responsibility for the family is believed to be the best way to protect the railway system and people.
Do you remember that special train to Hogwarts school in the movies about Harry Potter? This is not some fictional locomotive. It is a real rail line in Scotland that runs a real train in the summer. It has always been a popular tourist attraction, but now the popularity of this railway line is simply crazy. People especially like the place where the steam locomotive rides on the Glenfinnan viaduct as it offers a wonderfully beautiful panorama of Scottish nature.
Derailment on Purpose
When you hear the message through the news that a train has derailed, you know that a major accident has occurred. This is always the case, but there are devices on the rails that direct trains off the rails specifically. They are installed in places where trains cannot enter. For example, such devices are installed in front of various walls, drawbridges, or sections where workers could be. Some of such devices are electronically controlled and some of them are stationary. Their purpose is very simple: a derailed train is considered to be less of a problem than a train crashed into a wall or killed workers on a line.
Ghost trains are not just some kind of spooky tale for kids, they exist and have a purpose. Sometimes the lines are very underused, but there is no desire to close them officially. Then non-scheduled trains that do not pick-up passengers are used, without prejudice to the rules that lines that have not been used for some time must be declared closed. Sometimes one train a week running on such an almost abandoned line costs less than it would cost to close the entire line.
Sometimes it is hard to imagine how big car factories can be. The factor of Audi in Ingolstadt has 18 km of lines, employing 17 drivers, and a host of other professionals. They are driven by hybrid locomotives that are designed to reduce CO2 emissions.