German express freight train races to Moscow
18 November 2005, BERLIN - An express freight train bound from Berlin to Moscow raced across Poland Thursday in a test designed to put paid to the era of agonizingly slow journeys hampered by red tape.
18 November 2005
BERLIN - An express freight train bound from Berlin to Moscow raced across Poland Thursday in a test designed to put paid to the era of agonizingly slow journeys hampered by red tape.
The German railways company Deutsche Bahn mounted the test to demonstrate that it can beat the truck industry in long-distance goods haulage in eastern Europe.
The test train left the Seddin railyard near Berlin in the black of night early Thursday on a 1,800-kilometre journey that was scheduled to last just three and a half days, a far cry from the 10 days that is common on the route through Poland and Belarus.
Road hauliers need four to five days to negotiate the route.
Deutsche Bahn said it had used computerized analysis to optimize procedures and faster ways of transmitting bills of lading ahead. It has also done away with frequent changes of locomotive and long delays in sidings to cope with unexpected holdups.
A spokesman confirmed the 600-metre-long train had reached Warsaw, Poland by Thursday afternoon after the usual red-tape procedures at the German border had been shortened by two hours.
Deutsche Bahn chief executive Hartmut Mehdorn and rail chiefs from the other nations are hitching rides with the train, which is due to reach the Kunzevo goods yard in Moscow on Sunday.
Subject: German news