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EXCITING: Modern Technology Helps Train PKP Intercity Staff

EXCITING: Modern Technology Helps Train PKP Intercity Staff
photo: PKP Intercity/Modern Technology Helps Train PKP Intercity Staff
25 / 11 / 2022

PKP Intercity is currently conducting a strategic research project to introduce training for conductor teams using virtual reality (VR) technology. The project is being carried out in collaboration with the Wrocław University of Technology. Lift training for people with mobility difficulties is another measure that PKP Intercity is taking to make the transport services it offers access to everyone.

A pilot program of training using VR technology has been running since September last year and is scheduled to end in the second quarter of 2023. More than 30 PKP Intercity instructors have already undergone the pilot training. Later this month, the innovative project will include 17 employees undergoing training for the position of conductor.

The training will cover the operation of lifts for wheelchairs and people with mobility difficulties, and thus with getting on board the train themselves. At the moment, the carrier has VR-developed lifts on FLIRT electric multiple units.

The use of modern technology will make it noticeably easier to train conductor teams. Thanks to VR technology, employees will be able to learn how to operate the lifts on different models of carriages and train sets while being in one location. The image from the goggles will also be able to be displayed on monitors - so additional people present at the training will be able to consolidate the knowledge gained, and instructors will be able to supervise the correct course. Importantly, the first phase of the training will take place without the real use of vehicles, and this will not strain the carrier's operational capabilities.

"PKP Intercity is undergoing a process of technological transformation. In addition to customer-directed solutions, we are also changing within the company. We are introducing new technological solutions to improve everyday work or, in fact, training. With all this, we are not forgetting about our most important capital - professional, trained employees. Such projects are to ensure that they can easily develop and acquire new competencies, which will translate into an increasingly higher level of services provided by us," says Marek Chraniuk, CEO of PKP Intercity.

PKP Intercity - rail accessible to everyone

The national carrier is constantly improving the accessibility of its services, and activities to this end are wide-ranging - they include increasing the competence of staff, and investing in friendly rolling stock and information for people with disabilities.

The amount of disabled-friendly rolling stock is steadily increasing. Last year, PKP Intercity's fleet was strengthened by 60 COMBO coaches, which have a separate space for people in wheelchairs and a lift to enable comfortable boarding. The compartments also have seats for carers and the spaces for wheelchairs are adequately secured with safety belts. Further facilities include automatic compartment doors, barrier-free floors and contrasting entrance doors, and adapted and safe toilets. PKP Intercity has included improvements for the blind in the design, so all pictograms and buttons have Braille markings. COMBO vehicles were honored with the prestigious 'Transport without barriers' certificate awarded by the Integration Foundation.

The PKP Intercity fleet is being strengthened by further units adapted to the needs of people with mobility difficulties. The lifts in the carriages and trainsets are different, so the VR training project will be a major logistical improvement.

Among the 81 new carriages produced by FPS H. Cegielski, 10 are type 177A-10 carriages equipped with a lift and spaces designed for people in wheelchairs. The first of 12 ordered Flirts and upgraded ED74s - also equipped with lifts and dedicated spaces - are already available to travelers.

PKP Intercity in the Accessibility Plus program

In April 2021, PKP Intercity joined the government's Accessibility Plus program, coordinated by the Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy. The program aims to ensure free access to goods, services, and opportunities to participate in social life for people with special needs. The aim is to adapt public space, architecture, and transport to the requirements of citizens. PKP Intercity's commitment to this idea is an acknowledgment and a guarantee of further expansion of activities in facilitating services for people with disabilities and senior citizens.

 

Source: PKP Intercity Press Releases

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