posted on 8th May 2023 11:03
Commercial traffic with the new diesel locomotives has started in Kolari’s roundwood traffic operations. The first commercial train powered by one of the new diesel locomotives was operated from Kemi to Kolari on 3 May. Five Dr19 locomotives have now been officially transferred from Stadler Rail Valencia to VR’s ownership.
The locomotives represent state-of-the-art technology, which is why the test program has included shunting tests in railway yards and test runs with various train configurations, railway sections and weather conditions. The locomotives will be further developed after the start of commercial traffic. There is still a need for diesel locomotives, as only slightly more than half of the Finnish railway network has been electrified. VR aims to maximize the amount of electric traction, but in the future, other power sources will also be needed in addition to electricity.
The first Dr19 arrived in Finland from Spain for testing in February 2022. The locomotives will arrive in Finland in phases and the complete fleet of 60 ones will be delivered by the end of 2026. The Dr19s will slowly replace the ageing diesel locomotives, which by then will be about 40 - 60 years old and will have already exceeded their normal life cycle.