Reporting
  

Bilateral Data Exchanges replaced by UIC Raildata centralised functions

Since 1986, railway companies have exchanged messages to identify the location of freight wagons and wagon mileage. The message exchanges

  • H38 “Location of Freight Wagons”
  • H39 “Wagon Mileage”

will stop by the end of 2016 and be replaced by ISR (International Service Reliability).

Raildata, a UIC special group, whose principal aim is to design, develop and run IT services to support the European rail freight business of its members, now uses an updated tracking system for freight wagons, enabling information to be obtained in a faster, simpler and more reliable way.

Much has changed in the last 30 years: the organisation of the railways has evolved, technologies have undergone a revolutionary change – however the need to track the movement of wagons and their mileage is even more important today than 30 years ago in terms of customer information, maintenance and safety..

The old way of sending messages to railways and waiting for a reply is changing. The IT services provided by Raildata have become more modernised with new and value-added features. The applications of ISR (International Service Reliability), an information system developed and operated by Raildata, and a common tool of Raildata railway undertakings used to track both loaded and empty freight wagons and consignments across large parts of Europe, now include new functions with regard to the import of consignment information, queries and transport plans, as well as wagon monitoring during train operation.

For further information please contact Patrick Mantell, Senior Freight Advisor:

mantell@uic.org

Or visit the dedicated website:

http://www.raildata.coop/isr

1 vote

Average rating: 5 / 5

News from UIC members
  

United States: AAR President and CEO calls on U.S. Surface Transportation Board to halt all major rulemakings until new administration installs full five-member board

The head of the freight rail industry’s main trade organization said today the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB) should defer a handful of widely panned regulatory proposals, most notably forced access, until the U.S. Senate confirms a full slate of board members appointed by President-elect Donald J. Trump. Such a pause is in line with Trump’s call for a temporary moratorium on all new regulation and a full review of both proposed and existing rules, as well as the process in which rules are made.

The call for a freeze is also consistent with the same principles that led Henry Waxman and John Rockefeller, then-leaders of the House and Senate Commerce Committees, respectively, to call upon the Federal Communications Commission in 2008 to halt any complex and controversial items until the Obama Administration took office.

“The policy landscape in Washington, D.C. dramatically shifted on Election Day, and as such, the freight rail industry believes the STB should suspend its misguided quest to reregulate freight rail,” said Edward R. Hamberger, president and CEO of the Association of American Railroads. “Now is not the time for midnight regulations, let alone the enactment of the unfounded proposals currently arising from the STB that will surely fail to meet the rigorous examination promised by future leaders.”

Speaking at a conference in New York City, Hamberger noted that a new administration has a real chance to ensure that policies are rooted in data and recognize the market realities of today, not the past. He stressed that all government agencies – including the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) – should strive for transparent, empirically driven rules that consider the cumulative effects of regulation, and that Washington leaders can be powerful change agents in fixing a broken regulatory system.

“Our industry has made it clear that rules should protect a true free market, and that no agency can spur ’competition’ through regulation,” Hamberger said. “The current economic regulatory structure enables freight railroads to earn the revenues necessary to invest so we can deliver the rail service our customers expect and deserve. Baseless proposals to reregulate commodities exempt from strict oversight for more than 30 years, or mandates for privately owned companies to use their private infrastructure and equipment for the benefit of competitors are indeed drastic shifts in economic regulation and have no business advancing without a full complement of board members.”

Congress reauthorized the STB in 2015 for the first time since its creation, expanding the board from three members to five. President-elect Trump will nominate three new members next year, which are subject to Senate confirmation.
“The bottom line,” Hamberger said, “is that great uncertainty is looming not just over the freight rail industry, but the entire economy. Now is not the time for regulators to jam through rules and inject even more government-induced uncertainty.”

(Source: AAR)

News from UIC members
  

United Kingdom: Network Rail and Keltbray recognised with environment award for Queen Mary viaduct regeneration scheme

Network Rail’s Queen Mary Viaduct project in East London has won a Bronze Green Apple Award in the Building and Construction category for Regeneration for Environmental Best Practice. The regeneration scheme, adjacent to Queen Mary University, was rewarded for its good environmental practice and social achievements.

The Queen Mary Viaduct development, led by Network Rail in partnership with specialist contractor, Keltbray, Queen Mary University and the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, was presented with the award for the approach used in the demolition of a disused railway viaduct with 25 masonry arches to provide additional land for the university and the local community. This Network Rail project has enabled the development of an outdoor sports facility, storage buildings, and new student accommodation, comprising 412 new rooms with 36 rooms designed to accommodate students with disabilities.

Network Rail will also transfer land previously designated for parking to London Borough of Tower Hamlets - to be used for neighbourhood allotments, benefitting the local community while also increasing habitat for wildlife and improving biodiversity.

The scheme gained particular praise for implementation of sustainable practices on site, including the recycling of construction material, minimising waste, creating a ‘green roof’ to encourage bio-diversity and the reduction of carbon emissions associated with the project.

Nigel Escott, Director of Property at Network Rail Property, said: “We are pleased that our Queen Mary Viaduct project has received this prestigious award, recognising the scheme’s contributions to both the environment and the local community. We are proud of our sustainable regeneration record and are currently progressing other development opportunities that will align with our place-making strategy to offer similar benefits around the UK.”

Phil Bromley, Project Manager at Keltbray, said: “Keltbray are pleased to have played a key role in the award-winning regeneration of the Queen Mary viaduct. We seek to employ the highest standards in environmental practice in line with our company’s long-term commitments, including the aim of supplying zero waste to landfill by 2020. This development has not only helped us on our way towards this target, but now serves as an example of best practice to the wider industry.”
The Green Apple Environment Awards were launched in 1994 by The Green Organisation to recognise, reward and promote environmental best practice around the world.

(Source: Network Rail)

News from UIC members
  

Germany: DB Schenker among first signatories of global standard framework on greenhouse gas reporting

First framework presented in Brussels • Unified, globally applicable accounting methods shall lead to mandatory ISO norm

DB Schenker is among the first signatories of a global standard framework on greenhouse gas reporting in freight transportation. A first draft of the standard approved this past April was presented to about 80 political and industry representatives on 15 November 2016, in Brussels. As a participant in the official launch, DB Schenker underscored the necessity of advancing the standardisation process. This would provide important reporting components for the complex freight transportation industry that could be established along the entire supply chain and result in uniform emission reporting. DB Schenker anticipates that by further anchoring this work in the already existing EN 16258 standard and its development into a corresponding ISO standard would provide the necessary framework.

The recent Memorandum of Understanding on a joint data sourcing cooperation signed by the EcoTransIT Initiative and the GLEC/Smart Freight Centre is viewed as an important milestone in the implementation of the standard. EcoTransIT World is a global programme for reporting energy consumption and emissions for all freight transport modes. In the Global Logistics Emissions Council (GLEC), companies and industry groups work together to advance the framework conditions needed for the uniform reporting of CO2 emissions in the freight transportation industry.

Since 2006, DB Schenker has been campaigning for an industry-wide reporting and the corresponding standardisations for greenhouse gases in the freight industry. Milestones include the development and publication of EcoTransIT World (www.ecotransit.org) in 2010 and the company’s participation in the development of DIN EN 16258 regarding the reporting of greenhouse gases in the freight and passenger transportation industries.

“For DB Schenker, the mutual exchange and comparison of accounting methods is essential,” explains Andrea Dorothea Schön, responsible for climate protection and CO2 controlling at DB Schenker. “This also includes other important alignments, for instance regarding air freight emissions allocation. A great deal depends on the responsible cooperation of actors along the supply chain. We continue to provide our best efforts on this matter.”

As a follow-up, DB Schenker has co-developed a guideline on reporting truck emissions for the future DIN standardization process that will be adopted at the end of the year. In this way, the transportation and logistics industry is preparing for the expected statutory reporting obligations for greenhouse gases.

(Source: DB Schenker)

Reporting
  

UIC Freight Forum held on 23 November 2016 in Vienna

On 23 November, the UIC Freight Forum took place in Vienna at the kind invitation of Rail Cargo Group.

The meeting, chaired by Mr Ferdinand Schmidt, CEO RCG, and co-chaired by Dmitry Verbov, Head of Railway Logistics Gefco Russia, focused on three sets of issues:

  • Topics impacting on rail safety
  • Topics impacting on rail productivity
  • Services to members

High on the agenda featured the question of safety related to wagon operation. In this context, Mr Nicolas Czernecki, Chair of the Wagon User Group, was thanked on behalf of all the representatives who collaborated towards reaching an agreement on the phrasing of Article 27 of the General Contract of Use (GCU) which governs the “damages caused by the wagon”. This new Article 27 will come into force on 1 January 2017. It establishes a more balanced system regarding damages caused by wagons and stresses the obligations of the keeper regarding the technical state of the wagon.

Following on from this, the question of rail safety was also discussed in the light of Directive (EU) 2016/798 adopted by the European Commission on 11 May 2016 as part of the Fourth Railway Package. The new text brings new perspectives regarding the obligation of the Entity in Charge of Maintenance (ECM). An impact analysis undertaken by Infrabel was presented by Mr Yvan Smets which will serve as basis for a more specific analysis of its potential impact on rail freight within the Study Group Quality.

The last safety related topic was presented by Mr François Crelo, CFL, Chair of the UIC Loading Rules Group, who gave Freight Forum members a progress update on the joint work undertaken with the International Union for Road-Rail Combined Transport (UIRR) on the harmonisation of load securing rules in order to achieve a better intermodality between rail and road whilst maintaining the same level of safety for rail transport.

On the question of productivity, several topics were presented.
Eric Lambert, CFL, Chair of the Combined Transport Group, commented on the future trailer and its potential impact on combined transport. He informed the audience of the recent trial authorisation in Germany to increase road vehicle length to 17.6m. Whilst gigaliners of 25.5m present a competition issue, they don’t really pose a technical one insofar as two craneable units are compatible with the current wagon fleet. This is however not the case for the 17.6m vehicles.

Mr Gerhard Bader, RCG and chair of the ATTI special group of UIC, was warmly thanked by the audience for the work achieved since the frounding of the group in 2015.

The group membership is composed of railways (UIC members or not) who have jointly developed a set of rules to simplify the transfer of wagons between parties whilst ensuring the highest degree of safety.
Since its creation the group has grown to over 82 participants. In January 2017 the first pilot data base of quality indicators for the ATTI members will be launched.

Under productivity improvements, the question of how digitalisation can be integrated into current processes was discussed and the emphasis was put on stronger member participation in ongoing projects and activities such as the ones relating to the electronic consignment note. Mr Juergen Maier, BLS, in charge of the question also brought to the fore the need for a pragmatic approach and mentioned the ETA initiative which stems from the Rotterdam Sector Declaration.

Finally, in the presence of colleagues from Iranian Railways, the UIC work on corridors, European and Transcontinental, was reviewed. Regarding the European Rail Freight Corridors, work is progressing within the ECCO project whilst transcontinental developments are dealt with by the Global Team of Experts who is expected to meet in the beginning of 2017.

The next Freight Forum is scheduled to take place in Paris on 18 May.

For further information please contact Sandra Géhénot, UIC Freight Director:

gehenot@uic.org

2 Votes

Average rating: 5 / 5

Reporting
  

12th UIC World Security Congress 2016 on the general theme “Security of Stations” held from 23 – 25 November in Helsinki

“Above and beyond moral and political considerations, security needs to be understood from a business perspective, as a valuable asset”

The 12th edition of the UIC Global Rail Security Congress was jointly organised by the Security Directorate of the Finnish Transport Agency (FTA) together with the International Union of Railways (UIC), the Worldwide Railway Association.

The conference took place at the Hilton Strand, Helsinki, on 23 – 25 November 2016 and was attended by around 100 participants from 25 countries. Among the participants, police, security agencies of Finland and railway representatives of the UIC Security Platform (Chaired by Prof. Gerd Neubeck, DB AG, Germany).

Every year, UIC organises a World Security Congress; this year, the congress was organised for the first time in Finland and focused on “Security of Stations”, with various presentations on the topics below:

  • Security by design
  • Social, legal and ethical aspects
  • Human factors / intermodality / stations in the city
  • UIC Station Managers Global Group

Mr. Antti Vehvilaïnen, CEO of the Finnish Transport Agency, President of the association of European Rail Infrastructure Managers (EIM), and Mr. Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC, welcomed the participants of this 12th UIC World Security Congress.

Mr. Antti Vehvilaïnen underlined the aspect of security for the FTA which is in charge of the construction and maintenance of the various Finnish infrastructures – road, rail, and maritime.

Mr. Jean-Pierre Loubinoux recalled the importance of the main stations:

As we all know, stations are not only transit hubs – they are centres of urban life, with the biggest stations often having significant numbers of people passing through. They are the public faces of cities, and the first and last thing travellers see on arriving or departing. They are the beginning and the end of a journey, and the impression they give forms a large part of what travellers remember of their trip - it may even influence their choice of transport mode next time. That means that we need not only to ensure security in objective terms, in collaboration with our institutional partners, but also to convey a feeling of security vis-à-vis our customers and staff. A welcoming, secure atmosphere, coupled with technical performance, makes rail travel an attractive option.

He concluded with the need for heads of security to work very closely in partnership with for the heads of the business areas (Freight, Passengers, Rail System).
Security is a UIC fundamental value, transversal, supporting the various technical and commercial activities.

Then, Mr. Gerd Neubeck, German Railways DB AG, Germany, Chairman of the UIC Security platform, drew attention to the various security events since the last UIC Global Rail Security Congress held in New Delhi, India, in December 2015.

The security policy has to combine the prevention of the acts and appropriate reaction during and after an attack.

At European level, he highlighted the role of European Commission and the Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move).

To conclude this opening session, the UIC Security Division presented the main results of the 2016 global security additional programme decided by the UIC General Assembly in December 2015 and which will be submitted at the next General Assembly in St Petersburg, to be held on 1 December 2016.

During the closing session – led by Mr. Jerzy Wisniewski, Director of the UIC Fundamental Values Department, and Mr. Iñaki Barrón de Angoiti, Director of the UIC Passenger Department – the final declaration of the congress, proposed by Mr. Jacques Colliard, Manager of the UIC Security Division was delivered:

Final Declaration

“The participants (about 100 participants from 25 countries) wish to express their gratitude to the organisers – the Finnish Transport Agency (FTA) and the International Union of Railways (UIC) – for successfully organising the 12th edition of the World Security Congress held in Helsinki from 23 – 25 November 2016 on the broad theme of “Security of Stations”.

They appreciate the results of the 2016 Global Additional Security Programme which was presented during the congress. The programme was commissioned by the UIC General Assembly in December 2015 – being a point of next General Assembly agenda for the endorsement.

The programme contains:

  • Training and communication
    • Creation of a toolbox, at the disposal of UIC members, based on the main existing training content, in order to help them organise their own training policy in the most efficient way
    • Organisation of new training programmes, bringing together external experts when needed on new or emerging security topics
    • Organisation of an annual Security Awareness Day to develop awareness and a culture of security
  • Crisis management
    • Publication of a reference guide to help develop adapted contingency plans
  • Interoperability and exchange of information
    • Creation of a UIC International Railway Solution (IRS) to exchange the required information in a common format with all relevant structures.

In addition to this general programme, they consider that “security of stations”, the broad theme of the congress, remains a crucial topic and needs to be addressed by UIC in a joint work programme between the Security Platform and the Station Managers Global Group in order to define a win-win model with the main guidelines for a station security policy which could be presented during the UIC conference “Next-Station” planned in Madrid in October 2017:

A common project group has to be set up soon for that reason, the first deliverables to be included in a Station Security Handbook.

Various aspects such as:

  • integration of security issues in designing the stations
  • social, legal and ethical framework
  • human factors aspects
  • intermodality risks and opportunities
  • specificities of airport rail stations
  • management of crowded places

should be part of this handbook

The participants of the congress warmly thanked all the speakers for the quality of their presentations which will be a useful and interesting basis for the future common work to follow from the congress.

They take note of the next meeting: the 13th UIC Global Security Congress, to be held in Germany at the end of 2017.

Mr. Raimo Tapio, Deputy General Director of FTA, closed the congress by thanking the participants.

The technical visit was held on the afternoon of the 25th to the FTA Security control and traffic management centres and guided by our co-organising team with Mr. Arto Muukkonen, FTA Head of Railway Security.

All presentations given during the congress are available on the UIC Extranet in the Security workspace for people already registered.

For those who are not yet registered in the Security workspace you can register online at

http://extranet.uic.org/index.php?tg=login&cmd=register

Once again the UIC Security team would like to thank the co-organiser FTA, all participants of the 12th UIC World Security Congress, and the speakers for the quality of the presentations proposed.


View of the meeting room and participants

For further information please contact Jacques Colliard, Head of the UIC Security Division:

colliard@uic.org

2 Votes

Average rating: 4 / 5

News from UIC members
  

Spain: New Chairman appointed for ADIF

Mr Juan Bravo Rivera, former CEO of Metro de Madrid (Madrid underground network), was appointed as new Chairman of ADIF on 18 November.

Previously, he held relevant positions such as Vice-Minister in Spain’s Department of Justice, Vice-Minister of the Treasury in the Regional Government of Madrid and Commissioner of the Treasury and Public Administration in the Madrid City Council. During his term in Madrid, he coordinated important infrastructure projects, such as the expansion of Metro of Madrid and Metrosur.

UIC expresses its warmest congratulations to Mr Juan Bravo Rivera on his appointment and conveys its very best wishes.

Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC, said in his letter of congratulations:

“Collaboration between railway companies has always been essential to the development of rail transport, with the aim of maintaining the necessary competitiveness to enable rail to serve society within the context of a sustainable transport system.

I hope that our successful, long-standing relationship with ADIF continues and develops with this new management.”

(Source: ADIF)

News from UIC members
  

Luxembourg: CFL multimodal opens a new connection between Zeebrugge (Belgium) to Lyon (France)

CFL multimodal, in cooperation with CLdN, has launched a new rail freight link between the CLdN / Britanniadok terminal in Zeebrugge (BE) to the Port Edouard Herriot terminal in Lyon (FR).

This new line has been in operation since the end of October 2016. In a first phase, there are three weekly round trips between Zeebrugge and Lyon. In a second phase, during 2017, an increase in the frequency of the trains to six weekly round trips is planned.

The train is open to semi-trailers, swap bodies and 20’ to 45’ containers and offers a 22 hour transit time between the Zeebrugge and Lyon terminals.

In the second phase, a commercial stop at the new intermodal terminal in Bettembourg (LU) will also be added. This stop will enable operators to connect to the existing daily trains to Le Boulou (at the French-Spanish border) as well as Trieste (IT) and the ferries to Turkey.

The cooperation between the two Luxembourg logistics groups enables the connection of the rail freight networks of CFL multimodal and the ferry services of CLdN, to offer integrated terminal-to-terminal solutions on connections between Bettembourg (Luxembourg) – Zeebrugge (Belgium), Le Boulou (France / Spain) – Killingholme / London (England), Lyon (France) – Dublin (Ireland), Trieste (Italy) – Esbjerg / Hirtshals (Denmark), Istanbul, Mersin, Izmir (Turkey) – Gothenburg (Sweden), and Leixoes (Portugal – CLdN ferry service).

(Source: CFL multimodal)

2 Votes

Average rating: 4.5 / 5

Cooperation
  

United Kingdom: New data reveals sharp rise in alcohol related incidents across the rail network in December

Christmas should be a time of year when everyone can enjoy themselves and have fun. But for some festive revellers it can spell danger, with Network Rail reporting a 25 per cent increase in alcohol related incidents across the rail network in December, compared to the beginning of the year.

Data collected over the last 10 years also shows that on average there are more incidents reported involving intoxication in December than any other month. As a result Network Rail, British Transport Police and RSSB are joining forces to urge party goers to take extra care when travelling on or around the railway.

Network Rail is issuing a warning to those who live near or may be out near level crossings. Many people may be out visiting family and friends in areas they are unfamiliar with and with many crossings located within a mile of pubs and clubs it’s important that people take extra care. Passengers should also be careful when around the platform edge after having a drink, with 25 people killed due to alcohol related incidents and a further 82 people seriously injured over the last 10 years.

According to British Transport Police, there is also a rise in violence at many of the busiest stations over the festive season, much of which is fuelled by excess alcohol. Between 24 November 2015 and 2 January 2016, the number of violent offences reported at railway stations across England, Scotland and Wales increased by 8% compared with the same period in 2014/15. At least one in 10 of those offences involved alcohol.

Allan Spence, Head of Public and Passenger Safety at Network Rail, explains: “We want everyone to have fun over the festive season and trains are the safest way to get around. But passengers and people living near the railway must remember that it can be a dangerous place. After a few drinks people can take more risks.
“Taking a short cut across the tracks, chancing it at level crossings or tripping as you get onto trains can kill you or change your life forever. Don’t let the drink take bad decisions for you – keep a clear head.”

  • Over 4,000 alcohol related incidents reported over the past five years
  • Almost half (44%) of all incidents reported last winter involved alcohol
  • Nearly 250 incidents recorded at level crossings last December
  • Passengers boarding and alighting were trains involved in 395 alcohol related accidents in the last five years

Chris Dos Santos, 30, received a 750 volt electric shock through his leg and into his body after deciding to cross the railway after a day out drinking. He now works with Network Rail to warn others about the dangers of drinking and crossing the railway.

“I fell and landed on the electrified rail that powers the trains that go along the track. I didn’t even know there was an electric rail on the railway. I received a 750 volt electric shock through my leg and into my body.

“I had a cardiac arrest. Three of my friends came and tried to help me but also received a shock. They thought I was going to die. I remember the smell of burning skin. It was awful. I received severe burns to my legs, back and arm. When I got to hospital they thought they were going to have to amputate my leg.

“A year later and things are starting to improve. I have started to work with Network Rail to support safety events and try and warn others about how dangerous the railway can be. I feel like this has really helped with my recovery.

“If I could go back to that night, I would never have walked along the railway. People should understand how dangerous it is. You don’t just put your life in danger, but others as well. No matter how many drinks you’ve had, making the wrong decision can leave you with consequences that you have to live with for the rest of your life. If my story can make just one person more aware of the dangers, then it’s worth sharing.”

In response to the seasonal surge in incidents, Network Rail and British Transport Police will be holding alcohol awareness events at the UK’s busiest rail stations in the run up to Christmas. Both organisations will also be targeting Christmas revellers in pubs, clubs and stations with a reminder to ‘keep a clear head’.
Officers from British Transport Police are stepping up patrols at stations across the country.

Detective Chief Superintendent Jason Bunyard, from British Transport Police, said: “Unfortunately, during the festive season, we see a rise in public order offences and antisocial behaviour. We put much of this down to the people involved drinking more than they normally would and behaving in a way they wouldn’t dream of if they were sober.

“Our priority is to make sure everyone gets to their destination safely. You can expect to see our officers out on the network helping people to enjoy the festivities safely and encouraging them to think about how alcohol can affect the way they behave and the effect this has on other passengers.

“We are asking you to keep a clear head. Think about what you would do and how you would behave if you were sober. There is no excuse for spoiling other people’s journeys or behaving any differently because you’ve drunk alcohol. We want you to have fun but it’s more important to get where you’re going safely.”

The campaign is also supported by Drinkaware who will be helping to deliver the message. Ben Butler, Director of Marketing and Communications at Drinkaware explains, “Drinking alcohol can make us more vulnerable or prone to accidents as it slows down the brain which can affect the body’s responses. The more you drink, the more likely you are to take a risk. Alcohol affects our judgement and reasoning, slows down reactions, upsets our balance and coordination and can even impair vision and hearing. The best way to keep the risks from alcohol to a low level is to plan your night out in advance; make sure you know how you will be getting home and that you have people you trust with you. Whilst out you should limit the total amount of alcohol you consume, drink more slowly, with food, and alternate with water.”

Watch Network Rail’s “Keep a clear head” campaign: https://youtu.be/pTD2NOJ6-d0

(Source: Network Rail)

3 Votes

Average rating: 5 / 5

Reporting
  

Workshop on International Rail Passenger Traffic on the East-West route held at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) on 22 November 2016 in Geneva

The workshop addressed the main challenges that international rail passenger traffic faces on the East-West route. Security, missing links, levels of service, cost of tickets, lack of cooperation among the railways in order to establish long-distance services (one ticket, one time schedule), visas and border crossing delays, interoperability, technological integration as well as several legal regimes are some of the challenges that railway passenger traffic faces today.

Moderated by Mr Kostantinos Alexopoulos from Transport Trends and Economics Secretariat Transport Division (UN ECE), the invited participants (representing OTIF, CIT, OSZD, EC, UIC and RZD, KTZ, JHR as well as the accredited state representatives) discussed the main challenges that international rail passenger traffic faces on the East-West route. Security, missing links, levels of service, cost of tickets, lack of cooperation among the railways in order to establish long-distance services (one ticket, one time schedule), visas and border-crossing delays, interoperability, technological integration as well as several legal regimes are some of the challenges that railway passenger traffic faces today.

Mr Jerzy Wisniewski, UIC Fundamental Values Department Director, representing Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC, presented technological solutions and opportunities for cooperating railway companies along the East-West international corridors. The workshop participants appreciated input by working bodies of the UIC to propose several solutions to facilitate passenger international traffic through examples of ticketing activity developed by UIC.

The conclusions from the workshop focus on the following areas for improvement such as: legislation, operations and technology/techniques.

The different legal regimes for passengers traffic by rail among the railway undertakings on common services, tariffs and time schedules on the route East-West increase costs, further decrease rail passenger traffic, reduce competitiveness and impede the development of effective rail transport operations and efficient railway business.

The challenges posed by rail transport safety and security take into account the technical differences that should not become barriers to the development of East-West rail passenger transport – however this is a part of operations cost.

UN ECE invites railway undertakings along the East-West route to cooperate on a regular basis in order to envisage, design and establish rail passenger services by agreeing on common and competitive tariffs, time schedules and itineraries, encouraging railway undertakings and international organisations for railways to test these services, whenever possible, in practice, by performing pilot tests.

UN ECE recommends that interested parties save international routes to attract more actively governmental support.

For further information please contact Jerzy Wisniewski, Director of the UIC Fundamental Values Department:

wisniewski@uic.org

1 vote

Average rating: 4 / 5

Reporting
  

UIC Director General participates in Global Sustainable Transport Conference organised by the United Nations from 26 – 27 November 2016 in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

The Global Sustainable Transport Conference took place for the first time ever in Ashgabat in Turkmenistan from 26 – 27 November 2016.

UIC was represented by Director General, Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, and Nick Craven, Head of the Sustainable Unit.

This event was the occasion to reinforce the role of the High Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport and discuss the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals. More than a thousand key stakeholders attended the event including three Heads of State, one Head of Government, six Deputy Prime Ministers, two Foreign Ministers, 42 Ministers and Vice-Ministers of transport and infrastructure. Some 200 business and civil society representatives, along with representatives of over 20 intergovernmental organisations and the UN entities participated in the event.

The United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon launched the event and acknowledged that the high level group had highlighted best practices in its report. He stressed that “we need to stop business as usual”, that “without action on transport we will not be able to limit global warming”. He also recognised that “it takes investment to see results; it takes mobilising funds from a variety of sources”. He emphasised that it was time for action – in the follow up of COP23, described as the COP for action.

UIC actively participated in the following events:

Mr Loubinoux spoke about railways and SMART grids during the transport energy and transport session. You can watch this discussion following this link:

http://webtv.un.org/watch/thematic-discussion-6-energy-and-transport-global-sustainable-transport-conference-ashgabat-2016/5225785947001#full-text

Mr Loubinoux said “We should not consider climate solutions in isolation, we must also think of the broader sustainable development agenda including employment, air quality, congestion, land use, urban planning – there is a lot of synergy between solutions to these issues.”

Mr Craven moderated the business summit session on transit corridors.
UIC co-organised the first ever side event of this first global conference on sustainable transport with UITP. The topic was rail and public transport delivering the sustainable development goals. The event was particularly attended by railway CEOs.

UIC contributed to the workshop on sustainable transport indicators organised by the World Bank and hosted by the Ministry of Roads from Turkmenistan.

Regarding the railway sector in the region, UIC applauded the final rails that have been laid for the first phase of the Asian International Railroad Track. On 30 October 2016 Turkmenistan installed the finishing rail tracks at Akina Station at the terminal point of the Turkmen-Afghan railway.

The conference concluded on Sunday and 50 countries endorsed the “Ashgabat Statement on Commitments and Policy Recommendations”.

All national governments delivered statements on sustainable transport. Together these statements made a compelling case for sustainable transport to be considered as a priority by the incoming secretary general of the United Nations António Guterres.

For further information please contact Nick Craven, Head of the UIC Sustainable Unit:

craven@uic.org

3 Votes

Average rating: 4.67 / 5

Promoting
  

TopRail.org: New UIC website on Tourism by Rail

UIC is pleased to announce that the new TopRail website has been launched: www.toprail.org

The TopRail website seeks to raise the profile of tourism by rail all over the world. It was created with latest information directly provided by its railway companies and has the ambitious goal of presenting a global overview of the existing leisure experiences by rail.

TopRail is open both to UIC members and the overall international railway community. The site, which already provides a large amount of information on tourist lines and trains by country, will undergo a process of continuous improvement and will feature new functions, with the option of navigating throughout the site using key words and a focus on tourist lines and trains worldwide.

It will also include regularly updated UIC e-News articles, as well as information about events and new products regarding the issue of tourism by rail.

Customers are more empowered than ever before in shaping their tourism experiences. New trends in tourism cater to “slow travellers” who want to create their own “authentic” journey. In this framework, the “leisure by train” formula works perfectly as a way to identify what turns simple transport into a special experience, which is a strategic framework for ensuring an attractive and positive image of railways in the current and next generations.

In this context, UIC, as the home of the international railway community, is in a privileged position to act as a catalyst between the railway industry and tourism sector. It is a neutral forum that provides a great opportunity to create a stable and formal network and a common voice for the tourism on railways activities.
To design and create a promotional platform (website) facilitating technical and commercial contacts between potential partners and the local tourism industry is one of the most important planned deliverables of the UIC TopRail group.

The site will enrich the existing group of dedicated sites devoted to current railway issues and projects coordinated by UIC in different areas such as freight, safety, environment, etc.

For further information please contact Vanessa Perez, UIC Senior Advisor Passenger and High Speed Department:

perez@uic.org

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Editorial team: UIC e-News Team, Paris 29 November 2016

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