Nottingham's trams started operating to a full
timetable at 5.38am on Tuesday, 6th January 2004.
Trams will now be rolling into Old Market Square every six minutes.
With the increased tram traffic we thought it was about time we
brought you an idiot's guide to road safety with the trams in mind:
It might first seem odd sharing a road with the trams but don't
fret. The tram drivers are professionally trained to look out for
potential hazards. Each tram has three different braking systems
- including an emergency brake which allows the vehicle to stop
within its own length when traveling below 30mph. However, things
to remember are...
- Do not obstruct the tramway.
- Make allowances for bikes and motorbikes making
- Where possible, avoid driving directly on the
track, especially in wet or icy conditions.
- Never overtake trams at tramstops in the street.
The tram drivers are professionally trained to look out for potential
hazards - that includes you! They will travel slowly in areas like
Old Market Square where there are lots of people and the trams are
fitted with a bell to warn of their approach if necessary. However,
you've got to be sensible...
- Wherever possible, use designated crossings.
- Tram tracks can become slippery underfoot in
wet and icy weather - it's best to steer clear of them if possible.
- Stay alert to the presence of trams and listen
out for their warning bell.
- Never cross tracks without looking both ways
first and do not run across tracks. Make sure you are not hidden
by parked vehicles when crossing. Always stand well clear of the
tram path - the space it takes up while it's moving and turning
corners - so that it can pass by safely.
- Stand back from the edge of tram stop platforms
as the tram approaches. Keep clear of tram doors.
- The 750Volt DC power lines are 5.8 metres above
the ground and no-one should make any attempt to touch or interfere
The tram may not be seen as the cyclists' friend with tram tracks
bringing more hazards to the roads of Nottingham. However, there
have been provisions for cyclists - cycle lanes alongside the track
in some places - road markings to help cyclists make the right manoeuvres
- designated track crossing points and parallel cycle routes. We
suggest you use them. Also, remember...
- Only cycle alongside and cross the tracks if
it is absolutely necessary.
- Use designated cycle lanes, parallel routes
and designated crossing points where available.
- If you do cycle along the tram route, take extra
care and do not cycle on the rails.
- If it becomes necessary to cross - e.g. on the
approach to tram stops - do not cross at a fine angle.
- Dont cross where there is a complex track
layout. Always cross tracks as close to a right angle as possible.
- Prepare to cross the tracks well in advance
Check behind early enough to concentrate solely on crossing the
tracks and ensure the manoeuvre is not rushed.
- Make other road users aware of your intentions,
through appropriate hand signals.
- Dont brake or steer while on the tracks.
- If in doubt, get off and cross on foot.
The trams won't be carrying any passengers for
the next few months - drivers will be testing journey times and
safety measures. This is so that the trams can satisfy tough criteria
set by the Railway Inspectorate before they come into operation
in the Spring.