Gatwick Set of Trains
Mr Allister asked the Minister for Regional Development (i) what is the current status of the Gatwick Set of trains; (ii) how much this set cost; and (iii) how long they were in service.
Mr Kennedy:Translink has advised that:(i) and (iii) following its purchase in 2001 and subsequent commissioning, the Gatwick train setwas used to supplement peak commuter capacity on the Cross Border Line, specifically between Newry and Portadown and to Belfast until June 2009. This rolling stock provides network back-up and remains an integral part of Translink’s operational reserve fleet;
(ii) the information requested relates to contracts Translink has entered into with other commercial organisations which are bound by confidentiality. Furthermore, the information has implications forthe commercial interests of the organisation.
Gatwick Set of Trains
Mr Allister asked the Minister for Regional Development (i) what was the cost of rebuiding a Driver Trailer for use with the Gatwick Set of trains; (ii) when this work was carried out; (iii) whether the Driver Trailer was used; (iv) where it is now; and (v) what are the future plans for this Driver Trailer.
Mr Kennedy: Translink has provided the following detail:
(i) The information requested relates to contracts Translink has entered into with other commercial organisations which are bound by confidentiality. Furthermore, the information has implications for the commercial interests of the organisation. The original business case for the Driver Van Trailer envisaged spare capacity for trains in place including for example security disruptions or other unforeseen events.
(ii) In 2007, following the purchase of the Gatwick trains, Translink separately procured a Driving Van Trailer which was upgraded to the specification required to facilitate push-pull operation with the Gatwicks. This unit, along with modifications to three locomotives, has been fully tested and commissioned.
(iii) Due to a downturn in the economy and a reduction in passenger numbers (particularly evident on the cross-border line) and revenues in Northern Ireland Railways during 2009, the Gatwick train set and upgraded Driving Van Trailer were fleet.
(iv) The Driving Van Trailer and Gatwick train set remain in strategic fleet reserve and are located at Lisburn and Ballymena sidings.
(v) The Driving Van Trailer was part of an Economic Appraisal for short term
additional train capacity until the new trains arrived. This also included Class 80 refurbishment. The procurement of the new trains will allow Translink to retire a number of fleet including the Driving Brake Standard Open Carriage.
Mr Allisterasked the Minister for Regional Development what is the status of the Driving Brake Standard Open carriage which Translink purchased from Rivera Trains; and how much did it cost.
Mr Kennedy:The Driving Brake Standard Open carriage referred to above is the same vehicle referred to as a "Driving Van Trailer" in AQW 8109/11-15.