Czech Railways (ČD) will equip up to 663 railway vehicles with the mobile part of the European Train Control System (ETCS) Level 2. The estimated value of the contract is CZK 6.6 billion, and up to 85% of this amount can be co-financed with European CEF funds, which support projects interconnecting European transport and communication networks.
“The safety of ČD trains is a priority for us. We have already equipped 1,191 vehicles with the GSM-R European communication system and 1,535 vehicles with the TRS national radio communication system. This enables traffic controllers and dispatchers to stop a train during an extraordinary event, even remotely by means of a general stop, and thus contributes significantly to the high degree of safety on the Czech railway network,” says ČD Chairman Pavel Krtek, who goes on to explain the benefits of the new control system: “The most modern interoperable ETCS control system further enhances the safety of our trains. For example, the system is able to stop a train in time even before a stop signal, before a ‘red light’, beyond which there may be another train. At a speed of 160 km/h, the brakes must be deployed hundreds of metres in advance. The system also eliminates human error in the case of reduced speed when taking a diverging track, for example when arriving at stations or on the line before a significant speed reduction when entering a tight curve,” adds Pavel Krtek.
ČD plans to install the mobile part of the ETCS control system on 663 vehicles of 33 different types, including locomotives and electric multiple units of classes 151, 371, 380, 660/661 (InterPanter) and 680 (Pendolino), CityElefant and RegioPanter electric multiple units, the control trailers of non-traction railjet units, as well as other locomotives, multiple units and control trailers.
As part of ETCS pilot testing in the Czech Republic (in the Poříčany – Kolín segment), this system was previously installed in three other vehicles (151.008, 362.166 and 471.042).
The vehicles will be able to use the ETCS train control system on the backbone railway network in the Czech Republic. The Railway Infrastructure Administration (SŽDC) will introduce it gradually on at least 2,000 kilometres of track. At present, for example, it is being installed on the 1st Corridor between Kolín and Břeclav.