Early Earthquake Warning
California has numerous active faults throughout the state that are known to produce large earthquakes. To ensure that the high-speed rail system can operate safely in such a seismically-active area, the Authority will implement a comprehensive seismic safety program, including earthquake early-warning and appropriate operational responses. This is service-proven technology currently being used in Japan and Taiwan.
The infrastructure that will support the high-speed rail program – such as bridges, tunnels, high-speed rail stations, and other facilities – will be built to meet all state standards for earthquake design in California.1
The Authority is also partnering with first responders across the state to create a response plan that will provide appropriate assistance to all passengers and operators on high-speed rail during a seismic event.
Early Earthquake Detection System (EEDS)
The Authority is adopting an Early Earthquake Detection System (EEDS) that will be designed to detect the initial wave produced by a seismic event and transmit data to onboard computers.
Detection of seismic activity will immediately stop all trains in operation and allow for inspection of tracks, bridges, and signals before resuming service.
1. Caltrans Seismic Design Criteria Version 1.7 (2013); American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association Manual, Ch. 9, seismic design for railway structures (2015)
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