The first of a total of eight high speed trains for Russian Railways (RZD) was shipped yester from the rail ferry port in Sassnitz/ Mukran on the island of Rügen off the North German coast. The train ferry “Vilnius” will carry the train initially to Baltisk. From there it will be ferried on to the Russian Baltic Sea port of Ust Luga. The contract to ship the trains across the Baltic Sea was placed by Siemens AG, the manufacturer of the first fleet of Russian high speed trains, with DB Schenker, the logistics services supplier for Deutsche Bahn (DB AG).
“Shipping the first Russian high speed train marks another important milestone in the longstanding and successful partnership between Russia and Siemens. We are very proud that Siemens technology from Germany has helped Russia to now join the club of high speed countries,” said Dr. Hans-Jörg Grundmann, CEO of the Mobility Division at Siemens AG.
Dr. Norbert Bensel, CEO of DB Schenker and member of the board of DB Mobility Logistics AG with responsibility for Transport and Logistics, underlined the fact that: “We have the necessary know-how to carry out this challenging transport project for our customer Siemens. This special order is a great boost for our ferry service to the East and for the economic development of the train ferry port in Sassnitz/Mukran.”
Sassnitz/Mukran is not only the largest train ferry port in Germany, it is the only one in Central Europe with tracks in the Russian 1,520-millimeter broad gauge, for which Velaro RUS has been built. The ferry is also fitted out with such broad-gauge tracks. The crossing to Ust-Luga will take about 50 hours. The trains will then roll overland for another 150 kilometers to St. Petersburg.
Due to the dimensions of the train and its wide bogies, the eight trains will be transported by road as oversized loads from the Siemens plant in Krefeld- Uerdingen to Sassnitz/Mukran by heavy-duty vehicle. In the ferry port, the cars will be unloaded by crane onto the tracks. The train will be separated into two sections – each section consisting of five cars – and stowed side by side in the ferry hold in order to distribute the weight of 625 metric tons evenly in the ship. Each train is 250 meters long and can accommodate 604 passengers. The trains are scheduled to go into service on the line between Moscow and St. Petersburg at the end of 2009 and operate at speeds of up to 250 km/h.
Press service Siemens AG.