Starting today, Caltrain will test its arrival/departure system to keep riders better informed of where their train is.
Using visual messages and audio announcements prefaced with “This is a test,” the system will use GPS technology to track the trains and transmit information to Caltrain’s Central Control Center. From there, digital messages will be sent to individual train stations and announced over the public address system.
The message will include the train number, the scheduled arrive time and if the train is on time or late.
As the train approaches the station, the message will change to a caution message: “Caution. Please stand behind the yellow line. The train is approaching.” Messages can be customized for each station and for north- and southbound platforms. For example, if a northbound train is late, the message would only be displayed on the signs on the northbound platform.
When fully operational, the system will begin delivering real-time arrival and departure messages one hour before the train is due to arrive at the station.
Commuters can also check the Caltrain website to get real-time arrival and departure information.
The testing will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and additional testing will take plain in August and September of this year.
The system is expected to go live by the end of the year.