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Dokumentenidentifikation EP1787883 05.07.2007
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0001787883
Titel Fahrzeug mit zwei Zugangsebenen und freiem Durchgang für einen Rollstuhl zwischen diesen Zugängen
Anmelder Bombardier Transportation GmbH, 10785 Berlin, DE
Erfinder Van Leeuwe, Stefaan, 8300 Knokke Heist, BE;
Vanherrewege, Stephan, 8400 Oostende, BE
Vertragsstaaten AT, BE, BG, CH, CY, CZ, DE, DK, EE, ES, FI, FR, GB, GR, HU, IE, IS, IT, LI, LT, LU, LV, MC, NL, PL, PT, RO, SE, SI, SK, TR
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 17.11.2005
EP-Aktenzeichen 050251172
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 23.05.2007
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 05.07.2007
IPC-Hauptklasse B61D 17/10(2006.01)A, F, I, 20070424, B, H, EP
IPC-Nebenklasse B61D 19/02(2006.01)A, L, I, 20070424, B, H, EP   A61G 3/06(2006.01)A, L, I, 20070424, B, H, EP   

Beschreibung[en]
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates to a vehicle comprising a passenger compartment with a compartment floor and at least a first access section and a second access section providing access to said passenger compartment. Said compartment floor has a first floor level at said first access section and a second floor level at said second access section, said first floor level being different from said second floor level to provide substantially barrier free access to said passenger compartment from two different railway station platform levels. The invention also relates to a corresponding passenger train comprising such a rail vehicle.

Public transport vehicles, in particular commuter trains or the like, often have to deal with the problem that they have to provide service at passenger stations with varying height levels of the station platforms via which the passengers enter the vehicle. While the average healthy adult passenger may be able to climb one or several steps to board the vehicle without noticeable effort, elderly or disabled persons face considerable problems when confronted with such a situation.

Several approaches have been taken to deal with these problems. One is to provide mobile lifting devices at the passenger station or vehicle integrated lifting devices (see for example US 5,230,288 ) lifting passengers in wheelchairs to the required boarding or exit level. Furthermore, vehicles with ramps of adjustable inclination at the vehicle doors have been proposed (see e.g. DE 195 03 089 C2 ). However, these solutions are expensive and impractical for commuter applications where rapid passenger exchange in a very strict timetable frame is required.

Another approach is to have separate access sections within the passenger compartment of the vehicle having different floor levels. Depending on the station platform level of the station currently serviced, the passengers may use the doors in the access section with the floor level adapted most to the current station platform level. Thus, in most cases, a substantially barrier free access to the vehicle is possible that may also be used with a wheelchair without further assistance. Such a generic vehicle is for example known from DE 94 21 209 U1 . Here, transfer between the different floor levels of the access sections within the passenger compartment is provided via stairs.

While this may be acceptable for most of the passengers, for wheelchair bound passengers the stairs represent a considerable barrier that may not be passed without assistance. Thus, with the known vehicles, in case no assistance is available, these wheelchair bound passengers are forced to use only passenger stations of similar station platform level.

It is furthermore known from a passenger train - marketed by the applicant under the name "Regina" and partly described in WO 99/48458 A1 - to have a lift within the vehicle. The lift transports wheelchair bound passengers between a low floor entrance level of a low floor access section and an elevated floor passenger compartment level. At locations remote from the low floor access section a further access section is provided at the elevated floor passenger compartment level. Here, without assistance by others, wheelchair bound passengers may not transit between these access sections since the corridor left between the seating of the passenger compartment is not of sufficient width to allow easy passage of a typical wheelchair. Furthermore, in typical commuter trains, especially during rush hours, this corridor is often partially blocked by other passengers or their luggage.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is thus an object of the present invention to provide a vehicle that, at least to some extent, overcomes the above disadvantages. It is a further object of the present invention to provide a vehicle that allows wheelchair bound passengers to board and alight the vehicle at stations with different platform levels and is suitable for use in a commuter appliance where rapid passenger exchange in a very strict timetable frame is required.

The above objects are achieved by a vehicle having the features outlined in claim 1.

The present invention is based on the technical teaching that a vehicle allowing wheelchair bound passengers to rapidly board and alight the vehicle at stations with different platform levels and suitable for use in a commuter appliance is achieved when at least one wheelchair transit path is provided within said passenger compartment between said first access section and said second access section, said at least one wheelchair transit path providing substantially barrier free wheelchair transit between said first access section and said second access section.

The wheelchair transit path makes it possible for wheelchair bound passengers to rapidly transit between the two access sections. Thus, even in commuter traffic situations with rather short intervals between subsequent stops at stations having different platform levels, a wheelchair bound passenger may easily transit between the two access sections allowing him to use any desired station. The wheelchair transit path may furthermore be easily designed such that neither the wheelchair bound passenger nor the devices allowing his transit substantially influence or hinder passenger flow within the compartment.

The two access sections may be spaced in the transverse direction of the vehicle, i.e. they may be located at opposite longitudinal side walls of the vehicle. In this case, for example, either low floor access is only possible on one side of the vehicle while elevated floor access is only possible on the other side of the vehicle. Alternatively, at another location connected to the two access sections by a further wheelchair transit path, an oppositely oriented pair of access sections is provided. Thus, in other words, on each side of the vehicle two different access levels are provided while the access sections with the same access level are arranged cross-wise, i.e. located on different sides of the passenger compartment and spaced along the longitudinal axis of the passenger compartment.

Preferably, the passenger compartment has a longitudinal axis and the first access section and the second access section are spaced along the longitudinal axis. Herewith a particularly simple and economic solution may be achieved affecting the transport capacity of the vehicle as little as possible.

The first and second access section may be spaced by an arbitrary distance. However, with preferred embodiments of the vehicle according to the invention, the first access section and the second access section are located adjacent to each other to form a common access area of the passenger compartment. This configuration allows particularly rapid transit of the wheelchair bound passenger between the first and second access section rendering this variant especially suitable for commuter appliances. Here, the wheelchair transit path may be designed in a very simple and economic way affecting the transport capacity of the vehicle and the passenger flow as little as possible.

The access area may be located at any location along the longitudinal axis of the passenger compartment. Preferably, the access area is located at a central section of the passenger compartment since, here, easy implementation of the two access levels is possible. Furthermore, starting from such a centrally located access area, sufficient space is available towards both ends of the passenger compartment to provide facilities appropriate for comfortable travel of the wheelchair bound passenger. By providing such facilities, the wheelchair bound passenger boarding and alighting at stations with similar platform level will not be forced to use the wheelchair transit path.

Preferably, the wheelchair transit path comprises at least one transit device, the at least one transit device providing a floor level change within the wheelchair transit path. It will be appreciated that more than one transit device may be provided depending on the length of the wheelchair transit path and/or other given design constraints of the wheelchair transit path due to other components of the vehicle (e.g. underfloor fixtures preventing the use of one single transit device). Furthermore, if necessary, transit devices providing contrary floor level changes may be provided along the wheelchair transit path.

The transit device may be any device providing such a floor level change, i.e. a floor level difference between an entry part of this transit device and an exit part of this transit device. For example, a lift may be provided as such a transit device.

Preferably, the transit device is a ramp. This solution has the advantage that it is very cheap in its implementation and operation, bears virtually no risk of down times, and requires only negligible maintenance. The ramp has the further advantage that it provides rapid transit to the wheelchair bound passenger as well as to all other passengers of the vehicle. Thus, it does not affect passenger flow within the vehicle. On the contrary, other than with the conventional stairs, passenger flow is enhanced since passengers do not have to watch their step when using the ramp.

The ramp may have a surface that is composed of one or several planar and/or suitably curved sections. The ramp may have any maximum inclination that is suitable for being passed by the majority of wheelchair bound passengers. Preferably, the ramp has a maximum inclination of less than 7°, preferably less than 5°. With further preferred embodiments of the vehicle according to the invention, the ramp has a maximum inclination of about 4° to 5°, preferably of about 4.6° to 4.9°. Herewith, on the one hand, the comfortable passage of the ramp by a vast majority of wheelchair bound passengers is guaranteed. On the other hand, a reasonable length of the ramp along the wheelchair transit path may be achieved such that the transport capacity of the vehicle is affected as little as possible by the ramp.

The ramp may have an arbitrary orientation within the vehicle. Preferably, the passenger compartment has a longitudinal axis and the ramp has the above inclination with respect to the longitudinal axis. Thus, very simple and space saving configurations may be achieved. In a very simple variant, the planar ramp is also parallel to the transverse axis of the vehicle.

With advantageous embodiments of the vehicle according to the invention, the first access section and the second access section are only spaced along the longitudinal axis by substantially the amount necessary for implementing the transit device. Thus particularly rapid transit between the access sections is guaranteed for, both, wheelchair bound passengers and any other passengers. A very compact vehicle design with high transport capacity may thus be achieved.

The transit device may extend over substantially the entire dimension of the passenger compartment along the transverse axis of the vehicle. Preferably, the passenger compartment has a transverse axis and the transit device extends over only a part of the dimension of the passenger compartment along the transverse axis. Thus, it is possible to arrange further vehicle components alongside the transit device.

With further preferred embodiments of the vehicle according to the invention, a platform is formed adjacent to the transit device. This platform may be located at either floor level. Preferably, the transit device extends over a first part of the dimension of the passenger compartment along a transverse axis of the passenger compartment and the platform extends over a second part of the dimension of the passenger compartment along the transverse axis. Furthermore, the platform may be used for arbitrary purposes. Preferably, the platform receives at least one of a wheelchair fixation means and a toilet unit, in particular a disabled accessible toilet unit.

With advantageous embodiments of the vehicle according to the invention, at least one of the first access section and the second access section comprises a compensation device adapted to compensate for gaps and/or height variations of railway station platforms. Thus, easy and comfortable access to the vehicle is guaranteed, in particular for wheelchair bound passengers.

The height difference between the first floor level and the second floor level is adapted to provide a maximum access ease with the station platforms to be serviced by the vehicle. Preferably, the height difference between the first floor level and the second floor level is about 150 mm to 280 mm, preferably about 200 mm. Herewith such access ease may be achieved with a majority of the station platforms to be expected during service.

In order to give a wheelchair bound passenger sufficient time to transit between the first access section and the second access section, preferably an announcement device is provided, said announcement device being adapted to provide at least information on the access section to be used at the next stop of the vehicle. Preferably at the announcement device provides, at a time, information on the access section to be used at the next subsequent stops of the vehicle. This information may be given in optical and/or acoustic form.

The doors of the first and second access section may be usable at any time, i.e. independent of the platform level of the station currently serviced by the vehicle. Thus, normal passengers may also use the door(s) of an access section whose floor level does not substantially match the platform level of the station currently serviced by the vehicle, e.g, by stepping down or up onto the platform. Preferably, the first access section comprises a first door and the second access section comprises a second door and a control device is provided, the control device controlling locking and release of said first door and a said second door on the basis of an information depending on the station platform level of the station currently serviced. In other words, preferably, only the door of the access section matching the station platform level of the station currently serviced is released and may thus be opened by the passengers.

Preferably, an information on the door to be used at the next station or stations is displayed to the passengers. Preferably, this information is also - visually and/or acoustically - output to passengers waiting on the platform of the station currently serviced. This may be done by suitable output means, such as displays, speakers etc., located at the outer shell of the vehicle.

The invention further relates to a passenger train comprising at least one vehicle according to the invention.

Further embodiments of the present invention will become apparent from the dependent claims and the following description of a preferred embodiment of the invention which refers to the appended figures. It is shown in:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Figure 1
is a schematic partially sectional side view of a preferred embodiment of a vehicle according to the invention forming part of a passenger train according to the invention;
Figure 2
is a schematic partially sectional representation along line II-II of Figure 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In the following a preferred embodiment of a vehicle 1 according to the invention forming part of a passenger train according to the invention will be described with reference to Figure 1 and 2. Figure 1 shows a schematic partially sectional side view of the vehicle 1 along line I-I of Figure 2 while Figure 2 is a schematic partially sectional representation of the vehicle 1 along line II-II of Figure 1.

The vehicle 1 is a control car with a driver's cabin 2 located at one end of a commuter train. Adjacent to the driver's cabin 2 the vehicle 1 has a passenger compartment 3 with a compartment floor 4. The vehicle 1 and the passenger compartment 3, respectively, have a longitudinal axis 1.1 and a transverse axis 1.2. For boarding and alighting the vehicle 1, the passenger compartment 3 has an access area 5. Along the longitudinal axis 1.1 of the vehicle 1, the access area 5 is located substantially centrally within the passenger compartment 3.

The access area 5 has a first access section 5.1 and a second access section 5.2 located adjacent to each other. Each access section 5.1 and 5.2 has a pair of doors 6.1 and 6.2 aligned along the transverse axis 1.2 of the vehicle 1 and located at both longitudinal sides 1.3 and 1.4 of the vehicle. Via these doors 6.1 and 6.2, passengers may board and alight the vehicle 1.

At the first access section 5.1, the compartment floor has first floor section 4.1 with a first floor level H1 of about 800 mm above track level. At the second access section 5.2, the compartment floor 4 has a second floor section 4.2 with a second floor level H2 of about 600 mm above track level. Thus, in other words, the height difference AH between the first floor level and the second floor level is about 200 mm.

This height difference &Dgr;H provides substantially barrier free access to the vehicle 1 at stations having one of two different station platform levels corresponding to the first and second floor level, respectively. This barrier free access allows wheelchair bound passengers 7 to board and alight the vehicle without assistance by other passengers or operating staff members.

In the commuter traffic situation the vehicle 1 is operated in, stops at subsequent stations often occur at rather short intervals. To allow a wheelchair bound passenger 7 to board the vehicle 1 at a stop via the first access section 5.1 and to alight the vehicle 1 at the next stop via the second access section 5.2 or vice versa, the access area 5 comprises a short wheelchair transit path 5.3 providing barrier free transit between the first access section 5.1 and the second access section 5.2.

The wheelchair transit path 5.3 connects the first access section 5.1 and the second access section 5.2 in the shortest possible way to allow rapid transit However, it will be appreciated that, especially in appliances with longer intervals between subsequent stops, such as with intercity trains, a longer distance between the first access section and the second access section may be provided as long as the wheelchair transit path still allows comfortable transit to a wheelchair bound passenger without assistance by other persons.

The wheelchair transit path 5.3 comprises a transit device 5.4 providing a floor level change along the wheelchair transit path 5.3. The transit device 5.4 is a simple planar ramp 5.4 connecting the first floor section 4.1 and the second floor section 4.2. The ramp 5.4 has an inclination &agr; with respect to the longitudinal axis 1.1 and is parallel to the transverse axis 1.2. In other words, the ramp 5.4 has this inclination &agr; with respect to the plane defined by the longitudinal axis 1.1 and the transverse axis 1.2. The inclination &agr; is selected such that, for a vast majority of wheelchair bound passengers 7, wheelchair transit is possible without any problems while keeping the ramps as short as possible.

As mentioned above, the distance between the first access section 5.1 and the second access section 5.2 is as short as possible to allow rapid wheelchair transit and to require as little space as possible for the wheelchair transit path 5.3 in order to maintain a high transport capacity of the vehicle 1. With the given floor level difference &Dgr;H and the given inclination &agr;, the ramp 5.4 defines the distance between the first access section 5.1 and the second access section 5.2 along the longitudinal axis 1.1,

In the example shown, an inclination of &agr;=4.9° is chosen. However, it will be appreciated that, with other embodiments of the invention, another inclination &agr; -preferably of less than 7°, more preferably of less than 5° - with respect to a horizontal plane may be selected. To keep a good balance between easy wheelchair transit and shortness of the wheelchair transit path 5.3, the inclination of &agr; is preferably chosen to be about 4° to 5°, more preferably about 4.6° to 4.9°.

The ramp 5.4 only extends over a first part of the dimension of the passenger compartment 3 along the transverse axis 1.2. A platform 5.5 is located adjacent to the ramp 5.4 in the direction of the transverse axis 1.2 and extends alongside the ramp 5.4. The platform 5.5 extends over a second part of the dimension of the passenger compartment 3 along the transverse axis 1.2.

Both, the ramp 5.4 and the platform 5.5 take about half of the dimension of the passenger compartment 3 along the transverse axis 1.2. Thus, the ramp 5.4 is broad enough to allow other passengers to pass a wheelchair bound passenger 7 transiting the ramp 5.4. Thus, passenger flow in the vehicle 1 is guaranteed at any time,

The platform 5.5 continues the first floor section 4.1, i.e. has a floor level equal to the floor level of the first floor section 4.1 of the first access section . However, it will be appreciated that with other embodiments of the invention, the platform may also continue the second floor section of the second access section.

The platform 5.5 serves as a wheelchair platform and may provide appropriate means - not shown in Figure 1 and 2 - for securing the wheelchair to the vehicle 1. To prevent that the wheelchair unintentionally falls off the platform 5.5, the platform 5.5 further provides safety means, such as walls 5.6 or guard rails etc., preventing direct access to the ramp 5.4 and the second access section 5.2. The safety means separating the platform 5.5 from the ramp 5.4 may furthermore be designed to provide a handrail for the wheelchair bound passenger 7 serving as an assistance when transiting the ramp 5.4.

A disabled accessible toilet unit 8 is provided adjacent to the first access section 5.1. The floor of the toilet unit 8 continues the first floor section such that it may be easily accessed by a wheelchair bound passenger 7. However, it will be appreciated that, that with other embodiments of the invention, the platform 5.5 may receive such a disabled accessible toilet unit Adjacent to the toilet unit 8 a further wheelchair platform 9 is provided. The floor of the wheelchair platform 9 continues the first floor section 4.1 such that it may be easily accessed by a wheelchair bound passenger 7. The wheelchair platform 9 may as well provide appropriate means - not shown in Figure 1 and 2 - for securing the wheelchair to the vehicle 1.

In order to give a wheelchair bound passenger 7 sufficient time to transit between the first access section 5.1 and the second access section 5.2, an announcement device comprising displays 10 or the like, are provided in the passenger compartment 2. The displays provide the passengers with information on the access section to be used at the next stop or stops of the train. Additionally or alternatively, the announcement device may give corresponding acoustic information.

Preferably, a control device (not shown) controls locking and release of the first doors 6.1 and the second doors 6.2 on the basis of an information depending on the station platform level of the station currently serviced. In other words, preferably, only the doors 61, 6.2 of the access section 5.1, 5.2 matching the station platform level of the station currently serviced are released and may thus be opened by the passengers.

This control may be done automatically on the basis of a stored station profile of the line currently serviced. It may also be done on the basis of an input of the driver. Furthermore, sensors or the like may be provided detecting the station platform level of the station currently serviced.

Preferably, an information on the doors 6.1, 6.2 to be used at the next station or stations is - visually and/or acoustically- output to the passengers inside the vehicle 1, e.g. displayed via the displays 10. Preferably, this information is also-visually and/or acoustically - output to passengers waiting on the platform of the station currently serviced. This may be done by suitable output means, such as displays, speakers etc., (not shown) located at the outer shell of the vehicle 1.

In the foregoing, the invention has been described with reference to an embodiment where the transit device is a ramp 5.4. However, it will be appreciated that, with other embodiments of the invention, the ramp 5.4 may be replaced by a lift device providing the floor level change. In this case, preferably, the platform 5.5 is accessible from both sides, e.g. via one or several steps, in order to allow normal passenger flow between the first and second access section.

In the foregoing, the invention has been described with reference to an embodiment with an access area having two access sections. However, it will be appreciated that, with other embodiments of the invention, the vehicle according to the invention may have an access area with one or more additional access sections, i.e. an access area more than two access sections, e.g. three access sections. It will be appreciated that such an additional access section may have a floor level different from the first and second floor level.

In the foregoing, the invention has been described with reference to an embodiment where the vehicle according to the invention is a end vehicle of a passenger train. However, it will be appreciated that, with other embodiments of the invention, the vehicle according to the invention may also be another wagon of a passenger train, in particular a wagon located at a middle section of the train and having no driver's cabin or the like.

In the foregoing, the invention has been described with reference to rail vehicles. However, it will be appreciated that, with other embodiments of the invention, the vehicle may be any other type of track bound or non track bound vehicle, e.g. a bus, serving stations with different platform levels,


Anspruch[en]
Vehicle, in particular rail vehicle, comprising: - a passenger compartment (3) with a compartment floor (4) and - at least a first access section (5.1) and a second access section (5.2) providing access to said passenger compartment (3); - said compartment floor (4) having a first floor level at said first access section (5.1) and a second floor level at said second access section (5.2); - said first floor level is different from said second floor level to provide substantially barrier free access to said passenger compartment (3) from two different station platform levels, characterized in that - at least one wheelchair transit path (5.3) is provided within said passenger compartment (3) between said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2), - said at least one wheelchair transit path (5.3) providing substantially barrier free wheelchair transit between said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2). Vehicle according to claim 1, characterized in that - said passenger compartment (3) has a longitudinal axis (1.1), - said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2) being spaced along said longitudinal axis (1.1). Vehicle according to claim 1 or 2, characterized in that said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2) are located adjacent to each other to form a common access area (5) of said passenger compartment (3). Vehicle according to claim 3, characterized in that said access area (5) is located at a central section of said passenger compartment (3). Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that - said wheelchair transit path (5.3) comprises at least one transit device (5.4.), - said at least one transit device (5.4) providing a floor level change within said wheelchair transit path (5.3). Vehicle according to claim 5, characterized in that said transit device is a ramp (5.4). Vehicle according to claim 6, characterized in that said ramp (5.4) has an inclination of less than 7°, preferably less than 5°. Vehicle according to claim 6 or 7, characterized in that said ramp (5.4) has an indination of about 4° to 5°, preferably of about 4.6° to 4.9°. Vehicle according to claim 7 or 8, characterized in that - said passenger compartment (3) has a longitudinal axis (1.1), - said ramp (5.4) having said inclination with respect to said longitudinal axis (1.1). Vehicle according to any one of claims 5 to 9, characterized in that said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2) are only spaced along said longitudinal axis (1.1) by substantially the amount necessary for implementing said transit device (5.4). Vehicle according to claim 10, characterized in that - said passenger compartment (3) has a transverse axis (1.2), - said transit device (5.4) extending over a part of said dimension of said passenger compartment (3) along said transverse axis (1.2). Vehicle according to any one of claims 5 to 11, characterized in that a platform (5.5) is formed adjacent to said transit device (5.4). Vehicle according to claim 12, characterized in that - said transit device (5.4) extends over a first part of said dimension of said passenger compartment (3) along a transverse axis (1.2) of said passenger compartment (3) and - said platform (5.5) extends over a second part of said dimension of said passenger compartment (3) along said transverse axis (1.2). Vehicle according to claim 12 or 13, characterized in that said platform (5.5) receives at least one of a wheelchair fixation means and a toilet unit, in particular a disabled accessible toilet unit. Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that at least one of said first access section (5.1) and said second access section (5.2) comprises a compensation device adapted to compensate for gaps and/or height variations of station platforms. Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that the height difference (&Dgr;H) between said first floor level and said second floor level is about 150 mm to 280 mm, preferably about 200 mm. Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that - an announcement device (10) is provided, - said announcement device (10) being adapted to provide at least information on the access section (5.1, 5.2) to be used at the next stop of said vehicle. Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that - said first access section (5.1) comprises a first door (6.1), - said second access section (5.2) comprises a second door (6.2) and - a control device is provided; - said control device controlling locking and release of said first door (6.1) and a said second door (6.2) on the basis of an information on the station platform level of the station currently serviced. Passenger train comprising at least one vehicle (1) according to any one of the preceding claims.






IPC
A Täglicher Lebensbedarf
B Arbeitsverfahren; Transportieren
C Chemie; Hüttenwesen
D Textilien; Papier
E Bauwesen; Erdbohren; Bergbau
F Maschinenbau; Beleuchtung; Heizung; Waffen; Sprengen
G Physik
H Elektrotechnik

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