LNER trials sensor system to indicate seat occupation

LNER has launched a trial involving sensors telling passengers which seats are occupied, in what it claims is a world first for rail.

Small grey boxes have been installed above seats on LNER trains. Once fully tested, the boxes will show lights that indicate if the seat is available. Green will mean it’s not reserved, amber will mean it is reserved for part of the journey, and red will mean it’s not available.

An LNER spokesman said: “We know how frustrating it can be when you can’t find a seat on a train. That’s why we’re really excited about the Seat sensors we’ve been installing on our trains over the past few months.

“These sensors are part of a new seat reservations system which will allow customers to find a seat far easier and quicker. We’re testing the system throughout August and, if successful, hope to launch in the autumn.”

The sensors have been developed with McLaren Applied Technologies. 


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  • Simon - 07/08/2018 21:46

    This is good but how will it determine if it’s a human sat in a seat or just someone putting a bag on it as they don’t want people sat next to them. I had the experience last week watching a woman get upset when someone wanted to sit down in a full train from Peterborough to Ely and they asked them to move their bag

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  • AndrewJG8918 - 10/08/2018 20:28

    But the Azuma Class 800’s and Class 801’s IET’s will soon be replacing the Class 91’s and Class 43’s on the East Coast Main Line from next year.

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