Automatic passenger counting on SBB long-distance trains.

Automatic passenger counting has been in use on regional services since 2003 and will now become standard on long-distance services too.

In the next few years, SBB and most other transport companies in Switzerland will introduce automatic passenger counting on their long-distance services.

Why are passengers counted?

On the one hand, counting passengers allows for an improved distribution of revenue within the public transport industry. On the other hand, it is critical for ensuring that the occupancy forecasts in the online timetable are as accurate as possible, as well as for the ongoing planning of the service offer.

How does automatic passenger counting work?

The automatic passenger counting system records the number of passengers boarding and alighting at each door. Infrared sensors are used to count passengers on regional services. A new technology based on optical sensors will gradually be put into operation on long-distance services over the next few years. Compared to infrared technology, the new sensors enable us to count passengers with even more accuracy. The occupancy forecasts in the online timetable will also be more accurate.

What about data protection?

Data protection is guaranteed. Individuals are recognised as people when counting passengers; the sensors count from above. However, beyond the count data, no personal information is stored and third parties cannot view any data.

How many trains will be installed with optical sensors?

SBB will equip around half of its long-distance trains with the new optical sensors for counting passengers.

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