If a Joint-Stock Company Ukrzaliznytsia [Ukrainian Railways] continues to be inactive on the issue of renovation of obsolete rolling stock, railway transport in Ukraine may go under the control of the Russian Federation, ex-director on technical policy at Ukrzaliznytsia, former head of the Research Center of Railway Transport Rostyslav Diomin said in an interview with UNIAN.
”In addition to man-made hazards of obsolete rolling stock and the economic damage caused by the failure by Ukrzaliznytsia to fully provide services to industry, there is an additional but very important aspect – in the case of inaction on the replacement of the rolling stock, Russia may gain control over the rail transportation in Ukraine,” Diomin said.
He explained that Russia had been actively implementing a program of renovation of the rolling stock, building new railway carriages. To accelerate this process, the country has actually introduced a ban on extending the life service of older carriages. In this regard, Russia has accumulated a large number of decommissioned old carriages, which, according to experts, will rush en masse to Ukraine: first carriages, then locomotives.
According to his estimates, about 2,000-3,000 Russian carriages are now running on Ukraine`s railways.
The expert also noted that more than 40,000 freight wagons of Ukrzaliznytsia needed to be replaced within four to five years, thus it is necessary to remove at least 10,000 old carriages from service annually because they are the sources of hazard.
In addition to the problem of a shortage of locomotives and wagons, Diomin noted the low turnover of wagons during loading, i.e. the period between the loadings, which sometimes amounts to 11-12 days instead of the required three to five days.