TRAINING, education and simulation are the themes of the ITEC exhibition, being held at London’s ExCeL centre on April 20-22, and incorporating the sixth Rail Transport Training Conference on April 21.

Running a railway requires staff in control centres, workshops and on-board trains to function harmoniously, and training is one of the most important factors. Getting the best performance out of modern technology requires a high standard of initial training, with continuing development throughout an employee’s working life. The increasingly widespread philosophy of ’Train as you Act’ requires staff education to be made as realistic as possible, and high quality simulation enables the instructor to transfer the trainee into a virtual world, letting him act in stressful and unusual situations which would hopefully not occur in reality.

Simulators are becoming more realistic as computing power becomes increasingly affordable, and ITEC aims to help users and manufacturers keep up with the enormous progress being made. The exhibition covers the whole field of civilian and military uses of simulators, and delegates will have the opportunity to test the latest products.

The parallel Rail Transport Training Conference aims to establish a platform where users and manufacturers of railway-related training systems can exchange ideas, opinions and real-life experiences, and international speakers will present a range of technical papers from the perspective of both manufacturers and users.

The first conference session is Use of Simulator Technology for Train Drivers. Presentations will cover skill acquisition and retention, competency assessment and refresher and continuation training, as well as the purchase and use of driving simulators and the design of training courses.

The second session is entitled General Aspects of Railroad Training. Developing successful training programmes requires careful analysis, equipment standardisation and measurement of results, and the conference will cover training methods, driver qualifications, quality assurance and the importance of human factors.

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Railway Gazette International is official journal for RTTC.

CAPTION: The Railway Engineering Co is supplying its Tresim signalling simulator to EDM Ltd for the training and assessment of new and existing staff at Network Rail signalling centres