EUROPE: Bombardier Transportation and ÖBB's freight division Rail Cargo Group have completed a 4 000 km trial run using a Traxx AC Last Mile locomotive to haul a freight train from Sopron on the Austrian-Hungarian border, through Romania and Bulgaria to Tekirdag near Istanbul and back.
Rail Cargo Group currently operates four trains per week between the Ruhr region of Germany and Turkey using this route, and is to increase the service to seven per week from January.
The single Traxx locomotive was able to haul the 534 m long, 1 200 tonne freight train across the Carpathian mountains, where RCG usually requires two locomotives. Earlier in the test run, the last mile engine was used to power the train through a 20 km section where there had been a power supply failure, avoiding a 5 h delay.
‘This journey provided us an excellent opportunity to once again prove the power and versatility of our Traxx AC Last Mile locomotive’, said Ulrich Jochem, President, Locomotives at Bombardier Transportation. ‘Both during the grid failure and while crossing the Carpathians, the locomotive demonstrated its exceptional performance under extreme conditions.’
A BDZ diesel locomotive hauled the train for part of the journey in Bulgaria.