Testing of Auckland’s new electric trains has been stepped up over the holidays.
Commuters who use the Onehunga line will be the first to ride the trains which are due to go into service at the end of April.
Auckland Transport’s project director Lloyd Major says testing has been a great success. “These trains meet all our demands. They are a giant leap forward for passengers, they are comfortable, clean, efficient and quiet.”
Testing and driver training is being carried out, mainly at night and on the weekends, and has even involved loading a train with sand bags. Some 1776 sandbags on board, each weighing 20 kilograms, simulate the train close to full weight.
“The train is reaching speeds of 110 km/h which is the maximum speed allowed on the Auckland rail network”, says Mr Major.
The public are also reminded that overhead electric wires for the trains are now live across Auckland. The lines carry 25,000 volts which is 100 times more powerful than the supply used in homes and can be deadly if people get too close to them.
The new trains are quieter and accelerate faster, than the existing fleet so everyone needs to take care.
- Always cross at proper crossings.
- Watch and listen for bells at crossings.
- Always look both ways.
- Stay off the tracks.
- Pay attention to train horns.
- Stay behind the yellow lines on platforms.
Safety is a primary concern for Auckland Transport, KiwiRail and Transdev during the testing and roll-out of Auckland’s new trains.