The Hyperloop Probably Doesn't Have A Bathroom

Elon Musk’s long awaited Hyperloop announcement was today, and people are very excited.

However, there seemed to be something missing in the design.

A bathroom.

It’s not here:

And it’s not here either:

It’s understandable that the Hyperloop wouldn’t have a bathroom — the proposed journey time is 35 minutes. Passengers are expected to sit there for the entire journey (there isn’t a bar car either, it appears).

But 35 minutes is a long time to be stuck with a sick child, for example. Some passenger trains or coach trips might be of a similar length without a bathroom onboard, but usually you can get off these trains if worse comes to worst.

The PDF does offer some explanation as to what might happen in a “Onboard Passenger Emergency,” however:

All capsules would have direct radio contact with station operators in case of emergencies, allowing passengers to report any incident, to request help and to receive assistance. In addition, all capsules would be fitted with first aid equipment.

The Hyperloop allows people to travel from San Francisco to LA in 30 minutes. Therefore in case of emergency, it is likely that the best course of action would be for the capsule to communicate the situation to the station operator and for the capsule to finish the journey in a few minutes where emergency services would be waiting to assist.

Typical times between an emergency and access to a physician should be shorter than if an incident happened during aeroplane takeoff. In the case of the aeroplane, the route would need to be adjusted, other planes rerouted, runways cleared, aeroplane landed, taxi to a gate, and doors opened. An emergency in a Hyperloop capsule simply requires the system to complete the planned journey and meet emergency personnel at the destination.

So, in conclusion — you’d probably be best off planning ahead.

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