Climate change adaptation for GeoRisks mitigation of railway turnout systems

Serdar Dindar, Sakdirat Kaewunruen, Joseph Sussman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


To enhance rail operational flexibility, railway turnouts are special track systems, which are designed to divert or change a train from a particular direction or a particular track onto other directions or other tracks. In reality, the railway turnout is commonly built on complex track geometry and graded terrain, which makes it one of the most unique and critical railway infrastructures. The physical constraints and complexity of turnout systems cause various risks and uncertainty in rail operations. This study critically analyses emerging geotechnical risks on turnout systems considering all aspects that can potentially result in impaired reliability, availability, maintainability and safety (RAMS) of the turnout systems. The annual derailment incidents have been evaluated to identify emerging risk factors. Not only do these incidents yield operational downtime and financial losses, but they also give rise to the casualties and sometimes the loss of lives across the world. In particular, the climate change risks on geotechnical aspects of the turnout systems have been highlighted. This paper thus presents how turnout components work as a system, the diversity of emerging risks considering natural hazards and global warming potential to the system. In addition, it highlights the climate change adaptation strategies for georisk mitigation of the railway turnout systems in order to improve RAMS of the railway turnouts and crossings, focusing on trackbed failures on the systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-206
Number of pages8
JournalProcedia Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2017

Bibliographical note

S. Dindar, S. Kaewunruen, J.M. Sussman, “Climate Change Adaptation for GeoRisks Mitigation of Railway Turnout Systems,” Procedia Engineering, vol. 189, p. 199-206, 2017.


  • natural hazards
  • bayesian network
  • railway turnout
  • switch and crossing
  • trackbed failures


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