Latest News

16 May

Alstom and DSB reveal new IC5 train

French rolling stock manufacturer Alstom, along with public state-owned Danish State Railways (DSB), has unveiled the full-size scale model of the new IC5 Coradia Stream train to the Danish public.

This follows the contracted 2021 deal worth €2.6bn ($2.8bn) for the supply of 100 Coradia Stream trains, as well as 15 years of full-service maintenance.

The train’s top speed is 200km/h with five carriages and 300 seats will help ensure swift mobility across Denmark.

The Coradia Stream train has a modular architecture that enables operators to pick the interior layout and configuration that best suit their target market and business plan.

The IC5 trains are now becoming an established model with over 1,000 trains based on the Coradia Stream train family having already been ordered by countries including Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

19 May

Wabtec to modernise locomotives for Hong Kong Mass Transit Railway

US-based Wabtec Corporation has signed a deal with MTR Corporation in Hong Kong to modernise 25 locomotives in their fleet. 

The order, valued at roughly £12m ($14.9m) will see Wabtec working on 25 Mk3 battery-electric locomotives that the company originally built in 1996 and 1997, bringing them more up-to-date with current expectations and thus improving their performance, reliability and service life by more than 15 years.

The modernisation project will be focussing on three key upgrades: updating the existing control electronics and motor alternator control units; installing a datalogger to provide diagnostic capabilities and building new automatic test equipment to ensure the electronic racks are suitable for different operating modes. 

The first delivery of the modernised locomotives is planned for 2024.

16 May

ORR says Network Rail needs to do more on structure examination backlog

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has written to Network Rail to again express concerns about a backlog of railway structures needing examination. 

First raised as an issue by the ORR in 2021, the organisation has again flagged the importance of completing the necessary examination of infrastructure, such as bridges, tunnels and culverts, to identify any potential faults and thus avoid safety issues further down the line.

The regulatory body said that whilst there have been some “pockets of good practice”, the overall progress on the issue was limited. 

This lack of progress has also led to further concerns that Network Rail may not be able to comply with its own new standard for structure examination, coming into effect later in 2023. 

4 May

TfW confirms client agreement with GCRE

Transport for Wales (TfW) has signed heads of terms to become a major commercial client of the Global Centre of Rail Excellence (GCRE).

The GCRE is a £400m research, testing, and certification facility for rolling stock, infrastructure, and innovative new rail technologies being constructed at the head of the Dulais and Swansea Valleys.

As part of the GCRE membership model, companies can take guaranteed testing and research time at the site when it opens, according to their innovation needs.

TfW intends to take the highest level of membership at GCRE and become a ‘Premium’ client of the facility, which is due to be completed in 2025. The collaboration will see GCRE support TfW with its rail testing, innovation and R&D. 

As well as testing, R&D and innovation, the deal paves the way for TfW to use other GCRE services, including storage, training and product approvals in future as these are developed.

25 April

Hitachi extends maintenance contract with GWR

Hitachi Rail will continue providing maintenance for Great Western Railway (GWR) and Eversholt Rail’s trains after an extension of their partnership that will “improve train service reliability.”

GWR said that the contract, worth over £300m, was extended based on an increase of over 94% in fleet reliability since it was introduced with the Italy-based rail solutions provider. 

Over 500 highly skilled jobs, many of which are at the Laira depot in Plymouth which covers most of the maintenance for GWR’s Class 802s, will be maintained thanks to the contract extension and will also ensure “an annual UK supply chain investment of £70m.”

The sustainability of investment into the UK’s rail supply chain was one of the issues pinpointed by the Railway Industry Association in its submission to the Chancellor ahead of the Spring Budget where it asked the government to “commit to investment pipeline certainty and transparency.”