LONDON (AFP) - British researchers said Wednesday they have developed train carriages that can reduce deaths and injuries in terror attacks by using plastic-coated windows and measures to prevent flying debris. The New Rail research centre at Newcastle University analysed the carriages hit in the July 7, 2005 attacks on the London Underground and conducted a test explosion on a decommissioned carriage to study the impact on its structure. The three-year SecureMetro project focused on containing the blast impact and reducing debris, which is the main cause of death and injury in such explosions and an obstacle for the emergency services trying to reach injured passengers. The researchers on the EU-funded project said the solutions they developed were relatively cheap to implement. They conducted another test explosion on a prototype design, which had ceiling panels and features held in place with retention wire and plastic-coated windows to prevent potentially lethal glass shards being blown outwards. The new design also had lighter, energy-absorbing materials in place of heavier structures. "The Madrid bombings in 2004 and the 7/7 attack in London the year after highlighted how vulnerable our trains are to attack - particularly busy metro and commuter trains," said project leader Conor O'Neill. "Completely replacing existing vehicles just isn't an option. Instead, we have developed and incorporated new technology and materials into existing carriages to improve performance. "What we've shown is that companies could make some relatively cost-effective and simple modifications that would significantly improve the outcome of an attack."