Greater Anglia has announced that it has started testing on its brand new commuter trains which will provide more seats for journeys to London.
Bombardier is making 111 electric trains for Greater Anglia. These will replace existing electric trains on all services except Norwich – London and Stansted express train services.
In the early hours of 17 March, the train completed a test run on the Southend Victoria line in another milestone in the progress towards getting the trains into passenger service.
New trains have to undergo a series of tests before they can enter passenger service. These tests include checking their performance at high speeds, and also at platforms to see if anything needs relocating.
Staff including drivers and station staff also need to be trained to work with the new trains.
The new electric trains are all five or ten carriages. The five carriage trains have 544 seats and the ten-carriage trains have 1,145 seats.
What did the officials say?
Ian McConnell, Greater Anglia franchise and programmes director said:
“We can’t wait to get these trains into service because they’re going to make such a positive difference to customers journeys, so it’s fantastic that this testing has begun.
“Once we are fully satisfied the trains are performing as we want them to, we will put them into passenger service which will be later this year.”
“As well as providing extra seats, they will also give our customers a much more comfortable journey as these brand-new trains have all the mod cons that 21st century rail passengers now expect.”
Will Tanner, Bombardier Transportation Communications Director said:
“We are committed to getting these state-of-the-art Aventra trains into service with Greater Anglia as soon as we possibly can.
“We have two of our six production lines at our Derby factory dedicated to the project, and have recruited 400 extra staff since December to help reduce the delay to the project which has been caused by a range of factors. We have now built more than 230 of the 665 cars on order.”
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