Recently in some mass media there has been a lot of information about problems with the exploitation of electric traction units of the series EN97 (type 33WE) in the Company of Warsaw Commuter Rail.
A lot of the information was either incorrect or incomplete and thus we would like to present official information regarding the rolling stock operated by the Company and other plans and events crucial for our passengers.
Currently the Company owns 14 vehicles of the EN97 series, 24 vehicles of the EN94 series and one vehicle of the EN95 series. Except for the vehicle EN95, which awaits the planned repair P4 (auditoria) connected with the conversion into 3kV, all remaining vehicles are in operation. However, regardless of the completion of the new rolling stock supplies, both “old” vehicles of the EN94 series and the “new” ones of the EN97 series are being exploited at the same time for a number of reasons. This is due to:
- Limited efficiency of the power supply system 600V – EN94 are the vehicles of 452 kW power (in double traction) while EN97 – 1440 kW. Limited efficiency of the power supply system results in a limitation of the number of EN97 vehicles running simultaneously during rush hours. Exceeding values of consumed power would risk activating protection facilities and switching off the power supply units, resulting in turn in the halting of trains which could be very disruptive during the morning rush hour.
- Economy – EN94 vehicles can be still exploited for about 1.5 years. Removing them from service earlier would be economically groundless.
- Time flexibility of EN97 – Unexpectedly quick use of the rolling surface of wheel sets of this vehicle series limits their availability. Of course the deterioration of the rolling surface is a normal and predictable phenomenon, although it is too extensive at the moment. Thus to ensure security, the profile of the wheel set must be corrected which requires the vehicles to be transported to the company’s undertrack lathe which enables reprofiling without dismantling the wheel sets.
Due to the fact that our overriding aim is to maintain our carriage capacity we/the Company carry out our other activities, including e.g. the deadline for changing the voltage of the traction line into 3kV, dependent on maintaining 100% ability to execute the timetable. Our passengers could – albeit with regret – temporarily accept a lower level of travelling comfort but would certainly not excuse the cancellation of trains because of ill-considered decisions. Considering the above we perform all activities in a very thoughtful manner to minimise any inconvenience for our passengers.
The problem of fast deterioration of the rolling surface of the wheel sets of EN97 vehicles is being examined by the manufacturer – „Pojazdy Szynowe PESA Bydgoszcz” S.A. in cooperation with specialised research units. The current research in progress is aimed at limiting and next eliminating, the problem of fast deterioration of the rolling surface of the wheel sets in those vehicles. Information on progress of the case and other vital activities will be available on our website. www.wkd.com.pl and www.wkd-rpowm.eu .