January 16, 2013
Utah Transit Authority’s focus on safety includes snow retention by TRA Snow and Sun, protecting passengers not only at crossings but also from any falling snow or ice at new Frontrunner South commuter rail line and bus stations.
Utah’s new Frontrunner South commuter rail expansion, or Route 750, which began service December 10, 2013, was designed with safety in mind. To protect the expected 6800 passengers boarding and leaving this new route in one of the fastest growing states in the nation, UTA ran test trains at various speeds up to 78 m.p.h. for more than 3 months, conducted extensive safety walk-throughs, erected billboards regarding safety in strategic locations and offered comprehensive public safety campaigns. What most passengers don’t realize is that this focus on safety also extends to safety precautions in the design of their new stations. The danger is not from the train or other vehicles but from Mother Nature herself.
Within two weeks of opening their seven new stations from Salt Lake City to Provo, an average of 14 inches of new snow had fallen along its 44 mile path and 7800 passengers had boarded the Frontrunner South train. As snow and ice built up on the roads, more than 500 car crashes were attributed to the difficult conditions. Snow melted into water, ran down roofs and filled gutters with ice, creating hazards when it threatened to crash off of homes and businesses. But commuters came and went with no concern for the risk of dangerous snow and ice falling on their heads as they passed from platform to train car.
In the design of the new station, PIVOT Architecture had specified a clamp on snow fence by TRA Snow and Sun, a Utah company specializing in roof snow retention devices. The snow retention devices are engineered and designed specific to each roof condition including slope of roof, snow load, and type of roofing product. At the Provo bus station a standing seam metal roof was designed with two rows of snow fence rail installed on the station roof. It protects passengers waiting for a train or leaving the station.
Clamp On Snow fences prevent people and property from being struck by snow and ice falling from the roof. Property damage and injuries, even deaths can occur when snow is not properly retained on a roof. On a residential or commercial building, snow melting slowly on a roof rather than sliding off also creates an insulation barrier, keeping the interior of the structure warmer.
Jacob Anderson engineer at TRA Snow and Sun states, “The clamp on snow fences used on the Provo Intermodal bus stations were a great match for the type of roof used but most importantly because the two-rail snow fence offered additional protection to pedestrians below. It was apparent that UTA was most interested in getting the snow retention that offered the most comprehensive protection.”
UTA’s website states “Safety is our #1 priority.” It appears that this concern starts on the pavement but extends all the way up to the roof and protects passengers from not just dangers at ground level from Mother Nature herself.
TRA Snow and Sun, Inc., located in American Fork, Utah, offers Roof Snow Retention Devices, Solar Mounting Systems and Roof Flashing Solutions. They provide all customers, from the individual homeowner to the big developer, free engineered designs for all their systems. For more information call Jacob Anderson at TRA Snow and Sun at 800-606-8980 or visit www.trasnowandsun.com