Hector Rail’s service for Van Dieren Maritime between Norrköping in Sweden and Herne in the Ruhr district has started as planned. The first train left on 4 January and five trains now depart weekly in both directions. With an average speed of about 70 km/h, the market is offered a very competitive and climate adapted product.
Hector Rail signed an agreement with Van Dieren Maritime at the end of January 2007. The agreement entails the Dutch logistics firm, which has grown rapidly in the Scandinavia – Continental market, entrusting Hector Rail with establishing a direct rail service between Sweden and Germany. Collaboration was intensified during the autumn of 2007 with an additional agreement on a service between Västerås and the Continent, with service beginning in September 2008.
Based on the initial agreement, Hector Rail placed an historical order for new locomotives with the locomotive manufacturer Bombardier Transportation. Hector Rail was the first to order four-axle locomotives that are compatible with all of the various power and signalling systems in Sweden, Denmark and Germany.
The locomotives are based on Bombardier’s proven TRAXX model, of which more than 1,000 have been sold throughout Europe. In common with all modern locomotives, they have dynamic brakes that generate electricity during braking that can be fed back to the railway’s electrical system and be used by other rail vehicles. Rail transport with this type of locomotive is the most environmentally sound way of conducting land-based transport.
Hector Rail’s locomotive fleet currently consists of 20 locomotives, but an additional nine have been ordered for delivery during 2008.