The decision of the supreme steering committee followed sharp criticism by the railways who argued that a 20 kmh reduction in speed would not improve train safety
Following the fatal train crash at Beit Yehoshua and recommendations given to the Ministry of Transport by the Peled committee, Israel railways were instructed to lower train speeds, for a trial period, to 105 kmh near heavy traffic crossings & 120 kmh at open areas.
As of last week the supreme steering committee appointed by the Ministry of Transport and headed by Mr. Gideon Siterman, director general of the ministry, gave the railways green light to travel again at 140 kmh.
The decision of the supreme steering committee followed sharp criticism by the railways who argued that a 20 kmh reduction in speed would not improve train safety.
The supreme steering committee issued last week a report which examined the overall effects of speed on railway safety.
The report found that:
Lowering train speed has significant influence on travel time.
Extended travel time reduces the attractiveness of rail journeys.
Lowering train speed reduces the level & quality of train service by 30%.
Lowering train speed increases road traffic in general and at railway crossings in particular,
Increased road accidents & traffic congestion at entry points of the main metropolitan areas.
Slows down the transition from the use of private vehicles to trains.
The new speed limit came into force on August 5th