Wednesday, 20 November 2019

More rolling-stock delays in Wales

The plan to supplement old diesel units on the Valley Lines has hit a snag. Some less old electric sets would be supplied, converted to electro-diesel working by bolting on German MAN diesel engines. This is not a simple operation. It does not take an expert to recognise that the adaptive engineering must provide for dissipating the heat while the diesel engines are running, and control hardware and software to enable switching between the two power modes while the train is in use must be provided. I would guess that problems in one or both of these areas have not been solved, because the first of the new units delivered to the network had to be returned and further work is having to be carried out on the remainder. The trains ordered by Transport for Wales (TfW) for service in summer last year are still not ready.

TfW will no doubt take the flak, but they are in the hands of the train leasing company Porterbrook and its contractor Wabtec Brush.


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