Crowd Control & Health and Safety App for TFL

Crowd Control & Health and Safety for Transport for London

Creating a virtual crowd simulation to examine the effects of different crowd management strategies as well as a virtual Health & Safety application.

Use a virtual environment for transport planning and training purposes. 

Transport for London is responsible for the transport system in Greater London and employs more than 25 000 people. Among the work they do is designing, building and operating the underground train stations under Great Britain's capital. Some of the problems that they are facing are:

Getting staff properly trained in workplace safety is one of our top priorities. Accidents are an unfortunate but a preventable part of the job in these construction projects.

Being able to simulate a few different scenarios before opening a station to the public would greatly improve the traveller's experience and limit delays at busier periods.

This project was undertaken by the London Underground’s Engineering Development & Research Team to explore station design and customer behaviour to allow for improvements in capacity and reliability.

We created a virtual version of Victoria Station.

So that we can use it for Health & Safety training for staff in different immersive virtual reality scenarios.

By simulating an AI crowd, users can test out different crowd control strategies without affecting the real life commute of travellers of the London Underground.

Crowd Control Simulation

One virtual world for two purposes.

We've modelled a virtual version of London’s Victoria Station using pre-existing CAD models and used this virtual world as the backdrop for two different applications:

Crowd Control

We've created AI travellers to move through this space and programmed their behaviour to reflect different real-life personas, responding in a lifelike way to varying signage that can be put up by the application’s user. Transport for London staff can then play around with the number of travellers and the type of signage to see how this affects the flow of people.

Health & Safety

Using the same model, we've also created an application allowing Transport for London construction staff to wander around a virtual, live building site and take a challenge to spot typical safety hazards. At the end of the test, participants receive a score. Because the safety conditions are randomised every time, the challenge can be taken more than once and participants can try to improve on their score.

Health & Safety

Features of Crowd Control App.

Change Traveller volume

Have full control of the number of travellers arriving and let them enter the station from different station entrances.

Change type of traveller

Like in the real world, the application also has various types of travellers behaving differently. Tourists wander around more because they don't know exactly where to go, whereas daily commuters walk faster and with purpose.

Move signage

Move things like signs, barricades and turnstiles around the space and run the simulation to see how different setups affect different types of travellers.

Features of Health & Safety App.

Exploring

The user can wander around the building site and find various workers tackling different projects.

Safe or unsafe?

Depending on the work situation, the user is asked a set of questions regarding safety norms being followed or not. This makes the application more engaging and challenging, appealing to the user’s competitiveness.

Score

A score is kept to monitor a participant's performance. A certain level needs to be reached for people to pass the test and players get to retry and improve their score whether they fail or not.

Randomisation

All work sites in the simulation are randomised so the challenge can be played more than once for improved learning results. Because of this, users are less likely to simply memorise the order of correct answers in order to pass.