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Old January 20th, 2013, 02:49 PM   #801
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The problem is: without trains running, HSA can't pay its franchise fees. Which leaves the government further in the red. Then if they decide to slash fees on HSL, it might become attractive to run cheaper trains on HSL Zuid/4 (like they run trains to Liège over HSL-2).
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Old January 20th, 2013, 06:44 PM   #802
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Quote:
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The problem is: without trains running, HSA can't pay its franchise fees. Which leaves the government further in the red. Then if they decide to slash fees on HSL, it might become attractive to run cheaper trains on HSL Zuid/4 (like they run trains to Liège over HSL-2).
In other terms, put back the HSL-Zuid in the NS Network... The problem will
be that NS does not have a lot of equipment able to run off 25 kV catenary.
So they won't have that much capabilities to exploit this line either...
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Old January 20th, 2013, 07:38 PM   #803
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Quote:
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The problem is: without trains running, HSA can't pay its franchise fees. Which leaves the government further in the red. Then if they decide to slash fees on HSL, it might become attractive to run cheaper trains on HSL Zuid/4 (like they run trains to Liège over HSL-2).
HSA has never paid any fees to the government, and if the contracts from the concession would have been kept by the government HSA would already be bankrupt from all the penalties they would have gotten for not running the full timetable.

The state already decided to drop the current contracts from 2015 and take a fictional loss. I call it fictional because the fees far to high to be economical feasible. The HSA would either not pay the fees or go bankrupt in no time. Since the HSA = NS and the NS 100% state-owned this would have resulted in a loss for the government anyway, even without problematic trains.

With the end of current contracts the NS will be able to run regular trains over the HSL. The plans are already there to run the Den Haag - Eindhoven services over the HSL with the current loco hauled Fyra trains. But if they can't be replaced by the V250 that plan could be in jeopardy. Although it's very possible that more ICR stock is adapted for the HSL and that the NS will hire more loco's for more services. And when it's time for the next generation of IC EMUs, replacing the ICR cars and the ICM EMUs it will be possible to buy trains that are also capable of running on the HSL.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:04 PM   #804
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The V250 will be fixed
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:18 PM   #805
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The V250 will be fixed
I can see it having a future on regional services on secondary lines...
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Old January 21st, 2013, 09:02 AM   #806
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The V250 will be fixed
That's far from certain. It seems NS has already decided to cancel its
order for the rakes that have not been delivered yet, and the SNCB
boss went to the press this week-end to declare that he is in favor of
cancelling the whole belgian order too, for which no trains have been
delivered yet. There is a meeting of the SNCB direction committee today
to decide on this. Looks like the writing might be on the wall already, and
that Bombardier might have to find another italian partner for the assembly
of the ETR1000 : if the V250 order is cancelled and penalties applied, AB
will most probably go belly-up.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 11:02 AM   #807
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I doubt Bombardier hasn't got some financial assurances from Finmeccanica (the relatively healthy conglomerate who controls AB).
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Old January 21st, 2013, 05:20 PM   #808
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The SNCB director's council of today just finished.

SNCB gives AnsaldoBreda 3 months to fix all pending problems affecting
the V250 train sets. If this deadline is not respected, the contract will
be cancelled and SNCB will sue to get its money back.

In the mean time, an alternative will be put in place to allow passengers
to Amsterdam to join Roosendaal, the first NS station on the old line,
in decent time and confort conditions. From there, it is possible to catch the
regular NS IC service to Rotterdam and beyond. The bill for this temporary
stopgap measure will be presented to AnsaldoBreda.

Unfortunately, no details about the temporary trains that are put in place
are available yet - but that should come soon.

Source (in french) : http://www.lesoir.be/168535/article/...l%C3%A8me-fyra
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Old January 21st, 2013, 05:41 PM   #809
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There are 39 daily IC trains Roosendaal - Rotterdam, plus some number of local trains.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 05:45 PM   #810
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SNCB will also hold AnsaldoBreda fully accountable for any damages, including those to the Fyra brand image.
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Old January 22nd, 2013, 11:02 PM   #811
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AnsaldoBreda spokesperson said the problem is fixable in a matter of days, not weeks.

Meanwhile, the riff continues. Some groups are calling for the immediate dismantle of HSA and also that intermediate stations are built north of Rotterdam on HSL to make it a normal line that merely carries a couple faster trains
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 01:33 AM   #812
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Quote:
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AnsaldoBreda spokesperson said the problem is fixable in a matter of days, not weeks.
Bert Meerstadt, CEO of NS Group, has declared that NS will refuse to accept the V250 trains if all the other problems aren't fixed. "Either we give our customers a good product, or we don't. We refuse to offer them the crappy service they have experienced during the past couple weeks"

Meerstadt acknowledged that the V250 has serious issues and he declared that all spare rolling stock was needed to ensure daily operations could be fulfilled and that even that wasn't enough, sometimes. NS has 7 available trains - 3 needed for operations, 4 spare.

The attitude from NS signals a change to me. In the past, all communication was positive and came mostly from Marjon Kaper, the commercial director of NS Hispeed. This time, it's from Bert Meerstadt, the CEO of NS Group. A press release that went out a couple of days ago also was in the NS Group letterhead and not NS Hispeed's. Therefore, I think NS Group has seized control of their daughter company.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 02:34 AM   #813
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NS-Hispeed does a decent job with its trains to Frankfurt I think.

I would be bad if they are reunited because it would mean, effectively, the NS mentality taking over high-speed rail.

Forget about supplements for Fyra to Breda, for instance. I think they will abolish them if the takeover is completed.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 08:43 AM   #814
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Quote:
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AnsaldoBreda spokesperson said the problem is fixable in a matter of days, not weeks.
The CEO of Ansaldo has a bright future ahead in comedy when his company finaly goes under.

Quote:
Meanwhile, the riff continues. Some groups are calling for the immediate dismantle of HSA and also that intermediate stations are built north of Rotterdam on HSL to make it a normal line that merely carries a couple faster trains
I would say that sanity seems to be returning. For example the place where the HSL crosses the Den Haag - Utrecht line near Zoetermeer would be a good spot for a station. Lage Zwaluwe might be another good spot.

But yes, making the line more useful to those who will end up paying for it must be a nightmare for some people...
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 08:43 AM   #815
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Quote:
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AnsaldoBreda spokesperson said the problem is fixable in a matter of days, not weeks.
A couple of years ago AnsaldoBreda also said to a Dutch journalist that if the trains wouldn't be running before 2010 he receive the key to the factory. The journalist is still waiting for the key.

AnsaldoBreda is a lot of talk and even more problems. They are not just with their problems a terrible B2B partner, but also on the communication front they make it sure that no smart railway company wants to do business with them anymore.


I agree that the NS should be one company again. NS Hispeed is far to small to deal with all the problems. With the integration of the 2 concessions coming up it doesn't make sense to have 2 separate companies anymore. It will also make it much easier for the minister just to deal with 1 NS, it will give (currently) her more direct influence that is clearly needed at times.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 08:52 AM   #816
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The management team forming NS Hispeed has no experience whatsoever with rail, they're a bunch of people holding MBA's and having graduated from marketing school. They might be able to sell a train but they certainly can't run a train operating company.

This is unlike NS itself, Bert Meerstadt is a licensed train drivers and he is out and about regularly, exploring the Dutch tracks. Ingrid Thijssen, the managing director of NS Reizigers (the passenger division of NS Group) is a train manager as well. She can sometimes be seen in a train, helping passengers, inspecting tickets and closing doors.

These are the people needed right now. AB has (once again) proven to deliver unreliable products and it looks like some capable people have finally taken over that place.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 01:05 PM   #817
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Quote:
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I would say that sanity seems to be returning. For example the place where the HSL crosses the Den Haag - Utrecht line near Zoetermeer would be a good spot for a station. Lage Zwaluwe might be another good spot.
That would be a lunatic overreaction. Mind you there is nothing wrong with the railway line itself. It is just the rolling stock of one rather dubious manufacturer which causes some trouble.Thalys services for instance are running perfectly fine on this line.

Building new stations on this line won't make sense as it runs mostly through undeveloped areas. It would even make less sense to run slow services on it. Such services would inevitably conflict with 300 km/h fast international services. HSL Zuid was built to improve the rail link between the Randstad, Brussel and Paris after all. That goal has been achieve and so it remains.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 02:00 PM   #818
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Not withstanding the poor quality of the V250 I do want to mention that Alstom, Siemens or Bombardier trains probably wouldn't have been flawless either. Also the delivery reliability of Siemens and Bombardier in recent times hasn't been exemplary either.

In the case of Alstom: A few years ago Eurostars got stuck in the Eurotunnel because of melting snow and ice. The AGV is only used in Italy and there have

The ICE3 (BR 403/406 built by Siemens/Bombardier) also can't handle ice. Under snow/ice condition is maximum speed is limited to prevent damage to the underside. The ICE3 (BR 407, Siemens Velaro D) which was order by DBAG in 2008 is also delayed because Siemens can't seem to fix software problems.

Anyway: Up till some 25 years ago it was normal to built preproduction trains to iron out the bugs first. Apart from Japan this practice seems completely gone now and replaced by testing in service. So unless you take little risk with developing new trains, like Alstom usually does, you will likely hit trouble at some moment.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 04:51 PM   #819
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Hitachi built reliable train-sets for domestic high-speed services on HS1 in south-eastern England. Maybe NS should have shopped there as well.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 05:49 PM   #820
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@ M-NL, yeah but, whilst all trains have teething problems (even the Hitachi trains for HS1 did - they needed their bushes replacing as they suffered hunting, even on the new HS1 track), but thats does not excuse Ansaldo Breda in the slightest. Teething problems in other companies' products get fixed. So where's the comparison?
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