A car that ran a red light crashed into the Jerusalem light train at the French Hill Junction at 8 am this morning. There were no casualties, but the car and train were damaged. The accident caused massive traffic jams in northern Jerusalem. CityPass is operating the light rail system on a trial basis, with regular service scheduled to begin in August. The train was travelling at 5 km/h at the time of the collision.
CityPass said that the train driver acted according to procedure, and as trained. After the incident the train continued its test run, which are made without passengers.
The test runs are examining the light rail system’s 46 trains along the 13.8-kilometer route between Pisgat Zeev in the north and Mount Herzl. Early test runs discovered that the train’s high-tension power lines above the track block access by rescue vehicles, which require prior coordination to turn off the power.
New traffic arrangements came into effect in Jerusalem in January 2011 for the light rail’s test runs. The Jerusalem Municipality, under its transportation master plan, and CityPass deployed 300 traffic controllers and inspectors along the tracks to warn drivers and pedestrians.
The light rail system is designed to carry 100,000 passengers a day and 30 million passengers a year.