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State-of-the-art maintenance trains on the way to support Elizabeth Line

New top-of-the-line maintenance trains used on the Elizabeth line are being tested ahead of delivery to London later this year.

Manufactured by Austrian company Lisinger in Steyrermühl, a new milling train and two multi-purpose engineering trains manufactured in Germany will deliver the high levels of monitoring and maintenance that TfL will require for the Elizabeth line.

The milling train, 48 metres long, is the first of its kind to be used in the UK rail industry, and is able to scan the rails using electromagnetic crack detection, searching for any defects. The metal chips will be collected and later recycled as high-quality scrap metal.

The two multi-purpose engineering trains have a unique gantry system which provides capability to change a five tonne, 35-metre switch rail within short overnight engineering hours.

The multi-purpose trains can also be configured for different purposes using cranes, a scissor lift for working on overhead line equipment or cabling, and a water tank and jet for drainage clearance and tunnel cleaning.

The trains will also transport new rail, platform screen doors, and station transformers amongst other things, through the central section of the Elizabeth line once stations are complete.

TfL believes the investment in cutting-edge technology will reduce maintenance costs, providing savings for years to come.

Howard Smith, operations director for the Elizabeth line, said complex monitoring and maintenance will be needed and the new vehicles will help those needs to be met.

“Most maintenance will be done overnight, out of sight of customers, but these great machines, with the help of our fully-trained staff, will also be able to act in case of any emergency repairs needed to keep the Elizabeth line running,” he added.

Mark Wyborn, general manager at GB Rail freight Limited (GBRf), said: “This is fantastic news for GBRf. It is great to continue the hard work on the Elizabeth line knowing that GBRf have contributed to each phase of this huge infrastructure build and will continue to do so when the new railway opens.”

The three trains are designed specifically for the Elizabeth line and are gauged to fit inside the new tunnels and on the central section of the route.

The operation and maintenance of the trains will be carried out by GB Rail freight Limited (GBRf). TfL has awarded this contract for a period of five years.

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Image credit: TfL


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