Internal Occupational Noise and Vibration Environments of Intermodal Freight Trains

  • L. Zoontjens
Part of the Notes on Numerical Fluid Mechanics and Multidisciplinary Design book series (NNFM, volume 118)


The occupational environment of inter-modal freight trains is of particular interest to operators in Australia due to the large distances and extended shift lengths undertaken by drivers; and the subsequent risks associated with fatigue and stress induced by noise and vibration. The management of driver fatigue is identified as critical to operational and occupational safety.

‘Crew vans’ are specially modified railcars providing sleeping and rest facilities on long distance freight forwarding operations. In this paper, physical assessments of the noise and vibration environments of crew vans are presented and compared to relevant guidelines and a limited amount of driver feedback. Measurements were undertaken onboard for four different crew van variants on major freight rail line services in southern regional areas of Australia.

None of the sleeping quarters assessed had acoustic environments recommended for preventing sleep disturbance. Measured internal noise levels significantly exceeded recommended limits, and intermittent ‘rattles and squeaks’ added annoyance and interference to sleep pattern. Vibration levels were found to be in general compliance with set criteria except for ‘buffing and pulling’ vibration modes due to modulating tension in the various couplings along the train.


Vibration Level Acoustic Environment Vibration Environment Driver Fatigue Airborne Noise 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Zoontjens
    • 1
  1. 1.Norman Disney & YoungPerthAustralia

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