ERTMS reaches milestone

UNIFE, the trade association for the European railway supply industry, has announced that 30,000km of track worldwide has been or is contracted to be equipped with the ERTMS train control system by its members.

ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System) is a major industrial project developed by six UNIFE members ̵1; Alstom Transport, Ansaldo STS, Bombardier Transportation, Invensys Rail Group, Siemens Mobility and Thales ̵1; in close cooperation with the European Union and other railway stakeholders. The components of ERTMS are ETCS (European Train Control and Command System) and GSM-R (the radio communications system to send information to the train).

ERTMS aims at replacing more than 20 different national train control and command systems in Europe, which are a major technical barrier to international rail traffic. Trains fitted with ETCS may run on ERTMS-equipped line, which brings considerable benefits in terms of interoperability, maintenance costs savings, safety and traffic capacity.

"These outstanding results demonstrate that ERTMS is a genuine European success story," said Michael Clausecker, director general of UNIFE. "The close collaboration of the industry and the European Institutions has resulted in a standard which attracts considerable interest not only in Europe, but also in the rest of the world. European decision makers should now continue to support investment in ERTMS to realise the benefits of interoperability as soon as possible."

There are currently more than 30,000km of tracks and 5,000 vehicles in service or contracted to be equipped with ERTMS in 27 countries worldwide. Whilst the majority of these investments are made in Europe, the system has also attracted interest from countries such as China, India, Taiwan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Mexico. Other countries are in the pipeline to follow with new contracts expected in the very near future.

Image: 30,000km of track worldwide will soon be equipped with the ERTMS train control system

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