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Old June 23rd, 2017, 09:52 PM   #441
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Update on Beskyd railway tunnel














http://lviv1256.com/news/yak-pozhyva...kydskyj-tunel/
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Old July 3rd, 2017, 12:08 AM   #442
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The new Chełm-Kovel train connection through the Polish-Ukrainian border.

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Originally Posted by Barciur View Post
A tymczasem prezentuję minirelację z przejazdu pociągiem Kowel - Chełm

Bilety zakupione w Polsce, jak sie okazuje, są kilka złotych tańsze niż te zakupione na Ukrainie - chyba wynika to z gorszego kursu kolejowego po tamtej stronie granicy.



Dworzec w Kowlu z zewnątrz


Na samych drzwiach dworca widnieje taka reklama:


A wychodząc na salę dworca, w punkcie informacji, spotkamy flagi UE


Pesobus wturlał się na peron.


I tu trochę masakra. Nie wiem, czy to nie ma fotokomórki, czy nie umieli tego ogarnąć, ale odprawę prowadzili prowadnicy przy dwóch parach drzwi. Pani prowadnica stała w drzwiach i po pewnym czasie drzwi ją chcialy przyciąć, ona potem te drzwi ręcznie odbijała, po czym one znowu się zamykały, aż w końcu olała sprawę i wyszła. Tylko dwie pary drzwi otwarte, reszta zablokowana.

SZT sam w sobie robi podobne wrażenie, co większość innych pesobusów - jest fajny, przestronny, przy czym większość foteli jest 3+3 po jednej stronie a trochę 2+2. Jakby był pełny, byłoby słabo.

Parę zdjęć z wnętrza

Niestety, jak być może trochę widać na tym zdjęciu, SIP nie działał... wyświetlał hieroglify


Numery miejsc są bardzo ciekawie oznaczone


Widok w drugą stronę...


No i najciekawsze - ktoś ma pomysł, co miało tu być? Bo językowo nie ogarniam


Co do przejazdu ogólnie. Po pierwsze, wypełnienie było może na poziomie 50%, raczej nie więcej. Było więć dość luźno i fajnie. Pociąg po stronie ukraińskiej jedzie dość szybko, w bardzo fajnym tempie, ale max prędkości nie wiem. Jazda jest przyjemna. Ukraińcy swoje obowiązki wykonują na stacji podczas postoju pociągu, ale w niepamięć poszły czasy, kiedy zbierali z pociągu paszporty i wracali później z nimi - teraz już jest jak po polskiej stronie, odprawa miejscowa. I cywilizowana.

Z tego, co widziałem od pani prowadnicy, tylko 5 Polaków było na pokładzie - w tym nas dwóch

Po polskiej stronie odprawa bardzo luźna. Przeszedł pies, potem SG, potem celnicy. Wszystko bez spiny, mało oficerów, dużo luźniej i spokojniej niż w pociągu przemyskim, ale tez mniej ludzi a czasu więcej. W Dorohusku ma niby planowo z godzinę stania. Całej godziny nie stał, ale stał sporo dłużej, niż zakończyła się kontrola. Potem turlanie się po szerokim torze do Chełma też trochę zajęło - swoją drogą wie ktoś, jaka tam jest prędkość?

W Chełmie bylismy około 10 minut przed czasem, szybki zakup biletów w kasie i w drogę do Lublina. Ogólnie świetna opcja na połączenia z Kijowa i Odessy, chociaż my jechaliśmy ze Lwowa - o 2:30 plackarta ze Lwowa, więc można też zamiast noclegu we Lwowie jechać w ten sposób. Do Lwowa się dostać jednak już dużo trudniej.
Summary for those who don't understand Polish:

- the Pesa DMU is spacious, although not everything worked well - the passenger information system did not work and the steward checking the tickets at the door was being constantly hit by the door which wanted to close,

- the train had approx. 50% of the seats sold,

- the speed at the Ukrainian side was quite high, at the Polish side it was slow,

- according to the steward, only 5 Poles was on the board,

- the border control is on the train, it was quite relaxed,

- the train was in Chełm 10 minutes before the time, it is well connected with the train to Lublin,

- at the Ukrainian side, it is well connected with the trains to Odessa and Kiev, the connection with Lviv is worse (he was going from Lviv - took a night train at 2:30 with a platskartny place).

The timetable is:
- Chełm 14:51 - Kovel 18:40,
- Kovel 11:53 - Chełm 13:41.

The train goes every day.
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Old July 27th, 2017, 08:33 PM   #443
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Beskid tunnel construction update:

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Old July 29th, 2017, 09:09 PM   #444
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Do you guys know what is going on with http://www.uz.gov.ua/ ?
I want to buy ticket for Lvov-Solotvyno train for mid-August and it says that there no such train, but I know it is (was last year when traveled on this route).
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Old July 30th, 2017, 09:46 AM   #445
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rombi View Post
Do you guys know what is going on with http://www.uz.gov.ua/ ?
I want to buy ticket for Lvov-Solotvyno train for mid-August and it says that there no such train, but I know it is (was last year when traveled on this route).

Check the timetable of the Lviv railways.
Different URL, I don't have it at hand...
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Old July 30th, 2017, 10:55 AM   #446
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rombi View Post
Do you guys know what is going on with http://www.uz.gov.ua/ ?
I want to buy ticket for Lvov-Solotvyno train for mid-August and it says that there no such train, but I know it is (was last year when traveled on this route).
Due to construction works the trains currently only go to Tjachiv (25 km before Solotvino). Train service to Solotvino will resume in october.
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Old July 31st, 2017, 03:39 PM   #447
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Ok, so seems I will have to go via Czerniowce to Romania.
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Old October 4th, 2017, 09:58 PM   #448
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From 10th december there will be once again a direct train service Kyiv - Lviv - Vienna:

Timetable from www.oebb.at (Austrian Railways):


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Old October 29th, 2017, 05:36 PM   #449
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An interview with Wojciech Balczun, a Polish manager who was the president of Ukrainian Railways from April 2016 to August 2017 and made many reforms. From the Polish "Polityka" magazine, issue 42/2017.

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Departure from Ukraine
Interview with Wojciech Balczun, a Polish manager, until August the president of Ukrainian Railways, about that reforming them could cost him live. By Jagienka Wilczak


Jagienka Wilczak: – It was 2015, the president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko decided that the fight with the corruption can be won only by managers from abroad - not connected with the oligarchs, not susceptible to bribes. From Georgia came Mikheil Saakashvili, from Poland Leszek Balcerowicz. You were supposed to rescue the railways…
Wojciech Balczun: – I found the railway in the state of break. Managed wrong, it was one of the main sources of financing for different economical and political environments, or even campaigns of parties. The effect: consumed reserves, lack of coaches, the fuel was sufficient for two days, we lived thanks to loans from suppliers with killing interest rates.

Does it mean someone intentionally gave you a task impossible to do?
If intentionally, then so that I, as a foreigner, take the responsibility for the fall of the railway on myself, and the oligarchs divide the estate between themselves. Maybe someone thought I am easy to frame. If unintentionally – it only changed my situation to worse.

You found Ukraine in a difficult moment.
I entered in the middle of political changes. The boss of the contest committee, who chose me for the president of the railway, was a Lithuanian Aivaras Abromavičius, the minister of economy, who was supposed to cure it, but he could not withstand and he resigned. When the new prime minister Volodymyr Groysman came, most observers were convinced he will not maintain the decisions of the previous team. But the result of the contest was confirmed.

It was not a secret that the Ukrainian railway is being consumed by corruption and mafia interests.
I was aware of that. One of my predecessors committed suicide, another was shot. The railway needed a big reform and I long wasn't able to verify whom I get in the way. For example, one of the directors went out for a walk with his dog and he didn't return. The dog killed, the human kidnapped. He came after eight months and said: "I have information that a killer from Lviv was sent to follow me". He was responsible for the energetics, and this is one of the most rotten parts of the company. Enormous corruption, illegal electric connections, there are whole towns where the railway "delivers" power.

In your cabinet, the interests of the Ukrainian oligarchs crossed.
In this company, the interests of all cross. Everyone's decision could hit someone's interests. Every day I was aware of risk, also of the personal one. The fact that we lived with two colleagues from the management in a house rent together was because we didn't feel secure.

It is worth reminding that the Ukrainian railway is a giant, employing almost 300 thousand people.
It's the sixth railway in the world. The owner is the state. The Ukrainian railway is also specific: for lack of roads, the railway is the basic means of transport for the passengers, it carries also up to 80% of the freight. Perhaps there is no more important company in Ukraine. I would say, it's like a country.

You enter a company were the people are set hostile from the beginning, they are afraid of being fired.
We talk about a company which is delayed 20 years and whatever one touches, one can see simple sources of reserve. Better financial management, clear method of purchasing the fuel, stopping the bribery. We made – for the first time – a strategy for five years. At my rule, all the economic indicators appeared, also the salaries. The people started to trust.

Perhaps not all of them because the attack on you started quickly. On Facebook some posts appeared that you are notoriously absent at work and the company is being stolen out.
It was black PR, driven by the minister of infrastructure Vladimir Omeliyan. Actually, the railway went straight, it's me who bought new passenger and freight carriages. We started new connections: to Chełm, to Przemyśl, we planned next ones to Romania, Hungary, Slovakia. The price policy changed, I developed online ticket sale.

You were accused of tolerating the corruption, finally the minister of infrastructure demanded a resignation from you.
Many people were saying me that Ukraine is a Facebook country where most important are PR and convincing that everything will be wonderful even today, or tomorrow. I was explaining that the reform of such a big company must take some time. I mostly wanted to stabilize the finance and start the changes which would be visible for the passengers. But a railway which had a few billion dollars of debt and no credibility cannot simply take a huge loan to exchange the whole rolling stock. This situation was used by populist politicians who were saying that a Pole came, the railway was supposed to change, while the trains are still the same.

But the prime minister, at least at the beginning, was rather satisfied of your work?
Groysman and his closest neighborhood were supporting me and giving clear signals: Wojtek, don't give up, we know it's difficult but fight. However, the prime minister isn't the only political force.

The influence of the other politicians was stronger?
The pressure was enormous. My conflict with the minister of infrastructure is a good example. Because the minister didn't act alone and not only in his own name. I could see from inside how the company is organized, which way millions leak, how big bribes "go" and to whom. I wasn't able to enumerate all the managers and bosses of regional railways. I could see in what political systems they are. They were often people indicated by one or another political force to represent its interests. I couldn't take Poles for these posts, because, honestly speaking, not many wanted to come. Talking about a Polish troops landing on the Ukrainian railway is an absurd. So I relied on various recommendations, but it was a lottery.

You know, from where the attacks were coming?
I can only suppose. Only in January and February, the minister Omelyan gave several dozens of interview, practically every day saying on TV or on the radio how bad is Balczun. I experienced a personal attack, a paid campaign of black PR, insults, lies, to make Ukrainians hate me, to show that there could not be worse thing for Ukraine.

Why did it happen?
Perhaps because I wanted to work and manage the company, which, after all, from December 2015 started to be a joint-stock company. The management worked, there was the statute and explicit accounting. When I saw how the system works, I wanted to have the majority in the management to be able to decide. From that time, the ruthless attack of Omelyan began, who wanted to give another role to me. I was supposed to play only the representational function and give warranty for international financial institution. I was warned, but it was absurd for me: why to take a manager if he is supposed an object of attack and destroy only? However, there are too big interests, too muh money in this system to let anything go out of control.

Omelyan is a Poroshenko man. Have you had any contact with the president?
No.

You did not feel a presidential umbrella above you?
I cannot answer this question. I will only say that such a contact should be a normal situation because of the function the railway plays in the country. I was waiting for an invitation as a man who knows his place. But I didn't see it.

Could you defend yourself?
Some accuse me of being not active enough, others – that I took a glove. I didn't want to enter a medial battle, because instead of managing the company, I would deal with the political battle only.

So maybe the prime minister should defend you?
I think that he was doing it to some time. After that, there was big politics only. I became a card in the play of major forces. I thought that if I was employed as a manager from the west, I would have support. It turned out, instead of help from the first day, some were throwing roadblocks in the way. I knew such a situation can't last long. It was most important to save my reputation and – most important – to come back home in one piece.

Did you have security?
Yes. When the situation escalated, I decided it's better to have it. It was our railway workers. Did it really protect me or only made my feelings better, it's difficult to check.

In August you decided to leave. Officially. it was said that for personal reasons.
I left because I had a feeling I came to a wall. I became someone who disturbs more than helps. Some circumstances were impossible to break. For example, the thing of granting me access to state secret data. To get it, I would take an Ukrainian citizenship, which I wasn't planning to do. In this situation, managing the company was problematic. After all, there is a military conflict in the east, and the railway has strategic meaning.

What will happen with Ukraine?
I keep my fingers crossed for them. I saw a big potential in this country. But also big contrast. I thought it's a country mentally close to us (Poland). Actually, it was very different from Poland, from western Europe. Earlier, I had a dilemma whether Poland lies in the west or in the east. From the Ukrainian perspective I can be sure that Poland is in the west.

***

Wojciech Balczun (47 years old) – restructuring expert, manager and a guitarist of the "Chemia" rock band. Former president of PKP Cargo, chairman of the board of directors of PKP and PLL LOT. In April 2016, he won the contest for the president of Ukrainian Railways.
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Old October 31st, 2017, 06:15 PM   #450
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There will also be a new train running from Przemyśl to Odesa from 10.12.17. Here's its timetable

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Old November 1st, 2017, 12:26 AM   #451
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There will also be a new train running from Przemyśl to Odesa from 10.12.17. Here's its timetable

I guess it’s a reintroduction as I took this train back in 2005 as a trough coach Odessa - Prague.
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Old November 1st, 2017, 10:58 AM   #452
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As I remember there was a Przemysl-Kiev train until the early 2010s, which carried through cars Przemysl-Odessa, Warszawa-Kishinev, Warzsawa-Odessa, Prague-Kiev, Prague-Charkov.
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Old November 1st, 2017, 11:44 AM   #453
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There will also be a new train running from Przemyśl to Odesa from 10.12.17.
The train will be locomotive hauled cars or EMU?

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