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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A turnstile, also called a baffle gate, is a form of gate which allows one person to pass at a time. It can also be made so as to enforce one-way traffic of people, and in addition, it can restrict passage to people who insert a coin, a ticket, a pass, or similar. Thus a turnstile can be used in the case of paid access (sometimes called a Faregate when used for this purpose) (e.g. public transport or a pay toilet), or to restrict access to authorized people.
 History and applications
Turnstiles are also used for counting the numbers of people passing through a gate, even where payment is not involved.
Turnstiles were originally used, like other forms of stile, to allow human beings to pass whilst keeping sheep or other livestock penned in. Two passageways into Lincoln's Inn Fields in London have been named Great Turnstile and Little Turnstile for hundreds of years, harking back to the days when there was grazing there.
Turnstiles often use ratchet mechanisms to allow the rotation of the stile in one direction allowing input but preventing rotation in the other direction. They are often designed to operate only after a payment has been made, usually by inserting a coin or token in a slot, or by swiping an electronic card.
Mechanical turnstiles are less often used these days, with electronic gate and ticketing systems becoming more common.
The High Entrance/Exit Turnstile (HEET), a larger version of the turnstile, similar in operation to a revolving door, is known as an "iron maiden", after the medieval torture device of the same name. It is sometimes called a "Rotogate", especially in Chicago, where they are used at unstaffed exits of their El stations. In Europe, however, "Rotogate" refers to a different kind of gate that isn't even a turnstile.
 Turnstiles in Russia
In the public transportation systems of the Soviet Union, the only common use of turnstiles was at the entrance to subway stations (first introduced in Moscow Metro on November 7, 1958). City buses and commuter trains usually operated on the honor system. But as fare collection became a more pressing business in the post-Soviet Russia, railway terminals and high-traffic railway station in the Moscow area, Nizhny Novgorod, and elsewhere had turnstiles installed.
In the early 2000s, Moscow authorities went one step further in their quest to improve fare collection: since enclosing all bus and streetcar stops and providing them with fare gates would not be feasible, the authorities resorted to installing turnstiles inside each city bus and streetcar. This practice has caused numerous passenger complaints as it reduced the speed of boarding, compared to the traditional honor system.
 See also
 External link
Page showing various designs of turnstiles in the history of the New York subway system.