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SNCB train doors to close 30 seconds before departure

11:32 11/06/2018

SNCB train doors will close 30 seconds before the official departure time from now on.

The Belgian state-owned rail authority has adopted a new departure procedure to improve security for travellers and SNCB personnel.

Under the previous departure procedure, one set of doors remained open until the train got into motion – that of the train attendant. Because the train could leave at any moment, train attendants could not let anyone board the train, even though the last door could sometimes remain open for a significant amount of time.

The procedure frequently confused travellers who arrived on the train platform late and could create potentially dangerous situations, according to a SNCB press release. It sometimes resulted in physical scuffles between travellers who tried to climb on board after the departure signal had already been given and railway staff who tried to prevent them from doing so.

Under the new procedure, train attendants will close all doors after they have ensured that all travellers on the platform have managed to get on board and they have given the departure signal.

In the meantime, SNCB has launched a campaign urging travellers to arrive on the train platform on time – so at least half a minute before departure.

Photo: Peter Hilz / HH / Belga