Thursday, 23 December 2010

Hitachiballs - Japanese crackers

This from Invicta...

Alistair Dormer, managing director of Hitachi Rail Europe, in today's Northern Echo, said that the manufacturer had nearly five decades’ experience in building high-speed trains in Japan, where some areas regularly saw severe weather during the winter.

He said: “The Hitachi Class 395, which runs between London St Pancras and the Kent coast, has performed exceptionally well in all weather conditions, on all routes, while other trains have been unable to operate. We have not let passengers down and have continued to deliver a reliable service.

Hmm. Even though only 22 of of the 29 class 395s are diagrammed for weekday service, Ashford Depot has struggled to get a full allocation out, sometimes with at least one cancellation in the morning due to lack of available stock.

And between the peaks 10 of the Class 395s sit around at various locations having a breather...

So getting 40% of your fleet to work all day can't be all that demanding.

Meanwhile, how have the "other trains" managed? Those that according to Mr Dormer "have been unable to operate".

Well, on 22 December SouthEastern's hard working engineers put out 99 out of 112 Class 375 units - that's 88% availability compared with the usual 91%. The shortfall was largely down to units stuck in the snow...

That compares with 76% for the Class 395 fleet on a good day.