Six seconds on the Dutch railway in 2020
The Dutch infrastructure manager Prorail has finalised the planning for its timetable for the year 2020, effective from 15 December 2019. One innovation is a new method for distributing capacity with a system that enables to arrange transports every six seconds. Previously the planning was by the minute.
The advantage is that trains can be assembled more accurately. This will provide more space on the busy Dutch railway tracks. On the basis of trials with 740m-long freight trains last year, a number of freight operators will be authorised to introduce trains of this length for the first time with the start of the 2020 timetable.
Prorail expects that this change will lead to an uptick of annual freight volume from the current 42 million t to a range of 54 to 61 million t by the year 2030. (cd)