Book reviews

Derail: Why Trains Crash

by Nicholas Faith

This review of major rail accidents accompanies a TV series being shown on Britain's Channel 4. There are useful insights into the way disasters have affected passengers and staff, along with an explanation as to why rail accidents enjoy such a high media profile. The coverage is international, though focusing on North America and Europe where investigations into underlying causes are well documented. The impact of privatisation in Britain is also examined. Unfortunately, there are too many errors, including inexplicable confusion between two quite different accidents at Silver Spring and Shady Grove near Washington DC.

ISBN 0-7522-7165-2. £14·99 from Channel 4 Books, 25 Eccleston Place, London SW1W 9NF, Great Britain.

Fax: +44 20 7881 8193

Rolling contact fatigue of railway rails, with emphasis on crack initiation

by Jonas W Ringsberg

Increased traffic density and heavier axleloads have led to problems with rolling contact fatigue. This PhD thesis was defended in Göteborg against external examiner Professor Rod Smith from the University of Sheffield on September 15. It uses a numerical study of head check cracks to develop a strategy for fatigue life prediction of RCF crack initiation, which combines finite element analysis, multi-axle fatigue crack initiation models and computer modelling.

ISBN 91-7197-922-0

Department of Solid Mechanics, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-412 96 Göteborg, Sweden.

Fax: +46 31 772 3827

FS Materiale Motore 2000

by Fabio Cherubini

In its 240 pages, this colourful pocketbook provides a brief description and build details for all Italian Railways locomotives, EMUs, DMUs and high-speed trains in service or on order at the end of January 2000.

ISBN 88-85068-26-X

29000 lire from Editrice Trasporti su Rotaie, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II 42, Casella postale 100, 25087 Sal?€? (Brescia), Italy.

Fax: +39 36 541 092

New Zealand Locomotive & Rolling Stock Handbook 2000

by Gerald Petrie

A useful snapshot of Tranz Rail's fleet, this 156-page pocketbook traces developments since the privatisation of rail operations in 1994. ISBN 0-473-06396-4. NZ$30 including airmail postage from Locomotive Press, PO Box 2256, Christchurch, New Zealand.