Passenger services resumed on the Plum Railway in December 2019 after a hiatus of several years.

EUROPE: AŽD Praha says it plans to apply its ‘Intelligent Railway 4.0’ digital branch line concept on the Szeged – Röszke line in Hungary following completion of a programme to modernise the Plum Railway between Obrnice and Čížkovice in the Czech Republic.

The signalling supplier acquired the Plum Railway in 2016 in a dilapidated condition, and spent three years upgrading it for highly digitalised operation; passenger services resumed on the route in December 2019. Technology installed included ETCS levels 1 and 2 and LTE/wi-fi to support trails of automated operation. Level crossings have also been fitted with condition data transmission tools with a view to enabling them to communicate with digitally equipped road vehicles in line with the emerging C-Roads specifications.

Since then, AŽD Praha says it has been optimising the reliability of various control, automation and asset monitoring systems with a view to developing a model that could be applied to other regional railways.

‘For three years, we intensively developed, invested considerable funds, and then gradually installed technologies that, thanks to digital communication, now make up the intelligent railway 4.0. We are now verifying this from the point of view of safety, reliability and availability in the normal load of regular hourly traffic’, said AŽD CEO Zdeněk Chrdle on February 16.