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Concept: Commuter rail


Previous studies have shown accelerated gastric emptying after sleeve gastrectomy. This study aimed to determine whether a correlation exists between immediate postoperative gastroduodenal transit time and weight loss after laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG). Specifically, correlation tests were conducted to determine whether more rapid transit after LSG correlated with increased weight loss.

Concepts: Obesity, Airport, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden, Public transport timetable, Rail transport


Urbanization is an important factor contributing to the global spread of dengue in recent decades, especially in tropical regions. However, the impact of public transportation system on local spread of dengue in urban settings remains poorly understood, due to the difficulty in collecting relevant locality, transportation and disease incidence data with sufficient detail, and in suitably quantifying the combined effect of proximity and passenger flow. We quantify proximity and passenger traffic data relating to 2014-2015 dengue outbreaks in Kaohsiung, Taiwan by introducing a “Risk Associated with Metro Passengers Presence” (RAMPP), which considers the passenger traffic of stations located within a fixed radius, giving more weight to the busier and/or closer stations. In order to analyze the contagion risk associated with nearby presence of one or more Kaohsiung Rapid Transit (KRT) stations, we cluster the Li’s (the fourth level administrative subdivision in Taiwan) of Kaohsiung based on their RAMPP value using the K-means algorithm. We then perform analysis of variance on distinct clusterings and detect significant differences for both years. The subsequent post hoc tests (Dunn) show that yearly incidence rate observed in the areas with highest RAMPP values is always significantly greater than that recorded with smaller RAMPP values. RAMPP takes into account of population mobility in urban settings via the use of passenger traffic information of urban transportation system, that captures the simple but important idea that large amount of passenger flow in and out of a station can dramatically increase the contagion risk of dengue in the neighborhood. Our study provides a new perspective in identifying high-risk areas for transmissions and thus enhances our understanding of how public rapid transit system contributes to disease spread in densely populated urban areas, which could be useful in the design of more effective and timely intervention and control measures for future outbreaks.

Concepts: Airport, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden, Public transport timetable, Rail transport, Park and ride


Vaccination is a preventive measure against influenza that does not require placing restrictions on social activities. However, since the stockpile of vaccine that can be prepared before the arrival of an emerging pandemic strain is generally quite limited, one has to select priority target groups to which the first stockpile is distributed. In this paper, we study a simulation-based priority target selection method with the goal of enhancing the collective immunity of the whole population. To model the region in which the disease spreads, we consider an urban area composed of suburbs and central areas connected by a single commuter train line. Human activity is modelled following an agent-based approach. The degree to which collective immunity is enhanced is judged by the attack rate in unvaccinated people. The simulation results show that if students and office workers are given exclusive priority in the first three months, the attack rate can be reduced from [Formula: see text] in the baseline case down to 1-2%. In contrast, random vaccination only slightly reduces the attack rate. It should be noted that giving preference to active social groups does not mean sacrificing those at high risk, which corresponds to the elderly in our simulation model. Compared with the random administration of vaccine to all social groups, this design successfully reduces the attack rate across all age groups.

Concepts: Vaccination, Urban area, Influenza, Influenza pandemic, Smallpox, Influenza vaccine, Metropolitan area, Commuter rail


The aim of this paper is to determine what non-exposure factors influence the relationship between vibration and noise exposure from the construction of a Light Rapid Transit (LRT) system and the annoyance of nearby residents. Noise and vibration from construction sites are known to annoy residents, with annoyance increasing as a function of the magnitude of the vibration and noise. There is not a strong correlation between exposure and levels of annoyance suggesting that factors not directly related to the exposure may have an influence. A range of attitudinal, situational and demographic factors are investigated with the aim of understanding the wide variation in annoyance for a given vibration exposure. A face-to-face survey of residents (n = 350) near three sites of LRT construction was conducted, and responses were compared to semi-empirical estimates of the internal vibration within the buildings. It was found that annoyance responses due to vibration were strongly influenced by two attitudinal variables, concern about property damage and sensitivity to vibration. Age, ownership of the property and the visibility of the construction site were also important factors. Gender, time at home and expectation of future levels of vibration had much less influence. Due to the measurement methods used, it was not possible to separate out the effects of noise and vibration on annoyance; as such, this paper focusses on annoyance due to vibration exposure. This work concludes that for the most cost-effective reduction of the impact of construction vibration and noise on the annoyance felt by a community, policies should consider attitudinal factors.

Concepts: Construction, Building, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden, Public transport timetable, Light rail


Indoor air pollution is an increasing health concern, especially in enclosed environments such as underground subway stations because of increased global usage by urban populations. This study measured the indoor air quality of underground platforms at 10 metro stations of the Taipei Rapid Transit system (TRTS) in Taiwan, including humidity, temperature, carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO₂), formaldehyde (HCHO), total volatile organic compounds (TVOCs), ozone (O₃), airborne particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5), bacteria and fungi. Results showed that the CO₂, CO and HCHO levels met the stipulated standards as regulated by Taiwan’s Indoor Air Quality Management Act (TIAQMA). However, elevated PM10 and PM2.5 levels were measured at most stations. TVOCs and bacterial concentrations at some stations measured in summer were higher than the regulated standards stipulated by Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Administration. Further studies should be conducted to reduce particulate matters, TVOCs and bacteria in the air of subway stations.

Concepts: Oxygen, Particulate, Smog, Air pollution, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, London Underground


Most investigations of incident-related delay duration in the transportation context are restricted to highway traffic, with little attention given to delays due to transit service disruptions. Studies of transit-based delay duration are also considerably less comprehensive than their highway counterparts with respect to examining the effects of non-causal variables on the delay duration. However, delays due to incidents in public transit service can have serious consequences on the overall urban transportation system due to the pivotal and vital role of public transit. The ability to predict the durations of various types of transit system incidents is indispensable for better management and mitigation of service disruptions. This paper presents a detailed investigation on incident delay durations in Toronto’s subway system over the year 2013, focusing on the effects of the incidents' location and time, the train-type involved, and the non-adherence to proper recovery procedures. Accelerated Failure Time (AFT) hazard models are estimated to investigate the relationship between these factors and the resulting delay duration. The empirical investigation reveals that incident types that impact both safety and operations simultaneously generally have longer expected delays than incident types that impact either safety or operations alone. Incidents at interchange stations are cleared faster than incidents at non-interchange stations. Incidents during peak periods have nearly the same delay durations as off-peak incidents. The estimated models are believed to be useful tools in predicting the relative magnitude of incident delay duration for better management of subway operations.

Concepts: Airport, Public transport, Train station, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden, Public transport timetable, Rail transport


The railway system represents one of the most resource-efficient answer to our ever-growing demand for transport service and the development trends for the following years forecast a substantial increase in this sector. Considering the European Union, rolling stock realizes a significant share of both goods and passengers carriage while it is responsible for a derisory quota of environmental impact and energy consumption involved by transportation. Contrary to the low environmental impact, the amount of End-of-Life (EoL) waste generated by rolling stocks in relation to the number of vehicles is notable, much greater than in the case of road vehicles. As railway vehicles are constituted by many heterogeneous components, the EoL rolling stock is a precious source of materials, whose recycling brings measurable economic benefits and needs to be appropriately debated. The paper presents calculation of recoverability/recyclability rate for different typologies of vehicles representative of railway transport; calculation is performed on the basis of primary data and according to the recyclability and recoverability calculation method issued by UNIFE in the context of Product Category Rules (PCR). The typologies of railway vehicles taken into account are electric metro, diesel commuter train and high-speed electric train. The analysis envisages also to replicate the calculation in case innovative materials and manufacturing technologies are adopted in the construction of car-body structure. Results show that recyclability/recoverability rates are abundantly over the quota of 90% for each one of the three trains, these latter being made in major part of metals that benefit from very efficient recovery processes. The adoption of innovative materials and manufacturing technologies for car-body structure involves a scarce reduction of recyclability and recoverability rates (about 2% and 0.2% respectively) due to the introduction of components and materials characterized by critical dismantlability and low efficiency recovery processes; recoverability results less affected by lightweighting because post-shredding thermal recovery treatments are roughly independent with respect to dismantlability. A sensitivity analysis based on different dismantling scenarios reveals that the effectiveness of dismantling has a moderate influence on recyclability/recoverability rate (the variation does not exceed 3%). The low variability of recyclability/recoverability rate can be explained by the following reasons: predominance of metals in trains material composition, efficiency of metals separation processes close to 100%, post-shredding recycling processes of metals characterized by recovery factors equal to the ones of post-dismantling recycling processes.

Concepts: Public transport, Locomotive, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Rail transport, Third rail, Railroad car, Rolling stock


Does the rapid transit through the uterine environment modulate the sperm physiological state?

Concepts: Reproduction, Sperm, Fertility, Spermatozoon, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden


Rapid proximal colonic transit with anorectal holdup is a subtype of chronic constipation linked to food intolerance. We aimed to determine the effectiveness of dietary exclusion as a treatment for constipated children with rapid-transit constipation by scintigraphy.

Concepts: Effect, Effectiveness, Colon, Public transport, Rapid transit, Commuter rail, Mark Ovenden, Public transport timetable


This paper shows how to combine field observations, experimental data and mathematical modelling to produce quantitative explanations and predictions of complex events in human-machine interaction. As an example, we consider a major railway accident. In 1999, a commuter train passed a red signal near Ladbroke Grove, UK, into the path of an express. We use the Public Inquiry Report, ‘black box’ data, and accident and engineering reports to construct a case history of the accident. We show how to combine field data with mathematical modelling to estimate the probability that the driver observed and identified the state of the signals, and checked their status. Our methodology can explain the SPAD (‘Signal Passed At Danger’), generate recommendations about signal design and placement and provide quantitative guidance for the design of safer railway systems' speed limits and the location of signals. Practitioner Summary: Detailed ergonomic analysis of railway signals and rail infrastructure reveals problems of signal identification at this location. A record of driver eye movements measures attention, from which a quantitative model for out signal placement and permitted speeds can be derived. The paper is an example of how to combine field data, basic research and mathematical modelling to solve ergonomic design problems.

Concepts: Scientific method, Statistics, Mathematics, Research, Ergonomics, Commuter rail, Rail transport, Cognitive ergonomics