What are the dual “inner rail tracks”?


Sometimes, especially on bridges and in tunnels, railroad tracks have a pair of inner tracks. They don’t seem to connect to anything in any obvious way. What’s their purpose?


In: Engineering

Those look to be guide rails. They are there so if the train derails the wheels will hit the inner rail and stop the train from deviating too much from the path of the rails. This is particularly helpful around stations where a train coming through to one side or the other of the tracks would squish a lot of people.

There are there in case of derailment to catch the wheels and stop or reduce the movement of the train sideways.

If you look at you images and the wheel closer to you would jump the track the wheel on the other side would hit the track in the middle and hopefully stop the sideways motion towards you.