The quarantine and poor condition of the railroad are reported to be the reason for the delayed entry to the Greek railroad for the Silver Arrow high-speed train ΤΡΑΙΝΟΣΕ.
Initially, the authorities intended to time the first express route to coincide with the celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the revolution, on 25 March. However, the modernized Italian ETR 470 train, designed for about 600 seats, of which 151 are first class, is still languishing in the garage.
Today’s epidemiological data seems to shift the launch by a month the first high-speed route of the “Silver Arrow”…
As for the technical condition of the express, ΤΡΑΙΝΟΣΕ indicates that the train is ready for the first route. However, it was decided that there was no reason for him to enter the route, since the country has quarantine measures and travel restrictions between the country’s prefectures.
Lack of maintenance
At the same time, the country’s rail network does not seem to be able to accommodate this modern train, as lack of maintenance leads to constant disruptions. Thus, at best, in the absence of emergency situations that are part of the daily operation of the railway network, the ETR 470 will be able to travel at a speed not exceeding 160 km / h, and only in certain sections.
The Silver Arrow, designed to travel at a speed of 200 km / h, will only be able to do this in the future. The country’s rail network will reportedly not be ready to operate at high speeds until the summer of 2022. This is due to the fact that only next summer will be completed projects for the installation of signaling ETCS, ERTMS throughout the network, which will allow to develop higher speeds on the railway. As a result, the route between the two cities Athens-Thessaloniki will last 3 hours 15 minutes, compared to 4 hours today.
Meanwhile, the second Italian train ETR 470 is expected to arrive in Greece in the near future. At this stage, all the procedures necessary to purchase the next “silver arrow” from Italy are performed. The train will follow exactly the same route as the first ETR 470, which arrived in the country earlier this year. The express will be delivered to Greece “in tow”, i.e. it will not come on its own.
Upon arrival in Thessaloniki, the train will be sent to the factory in the engine room. The receipt of the new express will mark the beginning of test routes without passengers, as required by the Greek Railways Authority. It is assumed that the second “Strela” will be ready to serve passengers in May.
However, three trains are required to start regular express services between Athens and Thessaloniki. Two trains will run every morning from Athens and Thessaloniki, respectively, and there should be a reserve train to deal with potential problems. According to the data available at the moment, the arrival and completion of all tests of the third train will be completed during the summer.
Only five Arrows are expected to arrive by the end of autumn and will be included in the расписаниеΣΕ regular schedule.