Scot­land's fu­ture!

Sco­tRail un­veils first Hi­tachi Class 385 EMU

Rail (UK) - - Front Page - Richard Clin­nick As­sis­tant Edi­tor richard.clin­nick@bauer­me­dia.co.uk @Clin­nick1

THE first Hi­tachi Rail Europe Class 385 for Sco­tRail was un­veiled at Glasgow Shields Road on De­cem­ber 11, a week be­fore it be­gins test­ing on the Scot­tish rail net­work.

Four-car 385102 is the first of 70 elec­tric mul­ti­ple units built by the Ja­panese com­pany for SR. In to­tal 46 three-car and 24 four-car trains will be de­liv­ered. There is an op­tion for a fur­ther ten EMUs and dis­cus­sions have taken place be­tween Hi­tachi and Trans­port Scot­land, which or­dered the ‘385s, but no deal has been signed.

Ini­tially the EMUs will be used on Ed­in­burgh to Glasgow via Falkirk trains from Septem­ber next year, be­fore be­ing in­tro­duced on routes across the coun­try.

Speak­ing at the launch, Scot­tish Trans­port Min­is­ter Humza Yousaf said: “We are on the cusp of a rail rev­o­lu­tion, and the Class 385 is an im­por­tant part of that. Im­por­tantly they will shorten jour­ney times and pro­vide im­proved ca­pac­ity. I want to thank the teams in­volved, as I be­lieve from sign­ing the deal to the start of test­ing took ten months.”

He added it was im­por­tant that the mo­men­tum is main­tained by all those in­volved, so that the trains can en­ter traf­fic as planned.

Abel­lio UK Manag­ing Di­rec­tor Do­minic Booth said: “The Class 385s are at the cen­tre of what we are do­ing to im­prove Scot­land’s rail­ways. We are con­fi­dent that when they be­come op­er­a­tional, Scot­tish pas­sen­gers will see their ex­pe­ri­ence of trav­el­ling with Sco­tRail trans­formed for the bet­ter.”

Phil Ver­ster, MD of the Sco­tRail Al­liance, said: “To­day is a land­mark day as we wel­come the first Class 385 to Scot­land. We now have a vis­i­ble sym­bol of our on­go­ing mas­sive rail in­vest­ment.”

Karen Boswell OBE, MD of Hi­tachi Rail Europe, said: “We are mak­ing ex­cel­lent progress in our pro­gramme to de­liver this fleet for Scot­land. We’re proud that our trains, built in the UK with Ja­panese en­gi­neer­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, will of­fer pas­sen­gers a vastly im­proved 21st cen­tury trav­el­ling ex­pe­ri­ence.”

HRE has changed plans for

where the trains will be built and as­sem­bled, with 14 be­ing built in Kasado (Ja­pan) and 56 be­ing as­sem­bled at New­ton Ay­cliffe in County Durham. AT100 & AT200 Pro­gramme Man­ager Andy Rad­ford ex­plained that this was to en­sure the timescale is met due to ca­pac­ity. Main­te­nance will be car­ried out at Craigentinny in Ed­in­burgh.

The trains will be in­tro­duced onto Ed­in­burgh-Glasgow routes in Septem­ber 2017, South Glasgow routes to New­ton, Neil­ston and the Cath­cart Cir­cle dur­ing 2018, to Stir­ling and Cum­ber­nauld in De­cem­ber 2018, and on the Shotts route in March 2019 sub­ject to elec­tri­fi­ca­tion be­ing com­pleted.

BILL WIL­SON.

Sco­tRail 385102 stands in­side Glasgow Shields Road on De­cem­ber 11.

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