Over 1,000 checks for Greater Anglia’s new Bombardier trains

Thursday, 23 July 2020

Greater Anglia’s first four new Bombardier trains are undergoing over 1,000 checks and procedures in the run up to them entering passenger service.

Bombadier train on a test in May 2020

For the past two years, the Greater Anglia Project Team has been working with Bombardier and the approval bodies to ensure the design, build and delivery are in line with the agreed requirements and contract commitments - ensuring the train specification is met and that the testing and delivery requirements are fully achieved. GA engineers have been poring over updates and manuals - sent weekly from the train’s manufacturer, Bombardier - to check that everything is satisfactory.

This rigorous and detailed approach is focused on ensuring customers benefit from a high quality, reliable service as the new trains are brought into operation across the Greater Anglia network.

David Glass, Greater Anglia’s Fleet Engineering Manager, explains, “Before any train can be put into service, Bombardier has to provide us a full suite of manuals that include how the trains are maintained, a breakdown of how all the individual systems work, fault-finding guides and details of all the key elements involved in using the trains in a practical sense.”

“There are 1,220 checks and procedures for every new Bombardier train, and we have been working through these details over the past couple of years.”

“We’re now at a point where out of the 1,220 checks, we’ve finished all but a final few on each train. In fact, we’ve completed over 95% of them – so it’s been very good progress and we look forward to them coming into service later this year.”
The types of checks and procedures that have to be carried out for each train include vehicle maintenance instructions and procedures for things like checking brake pads or changing components, how to find and fix faults, and practical instructions for operating the trains in service, such as train preparation, traction and braking, door systems and passenger information systems.

Will Tanner, Director Communications, Bombardier Transportation said, “Testing is important for the introduction of any new train fleet, but is particularly important for a train as advanced as these new British-designed and built AVENTRA trains. We are working as a team with Greater Anglia to get everything ready so passenger service can start as soon as possible.”

Greater Anglia’s new Bombardier trains will run into London Liverpool Street from Essex, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Ipswich.

They are all longer than the trains they are replacing, with more seats, air conditioning, fast free Wi-Fi, improved passenger information screens, better accessibility features and bicycle spaces on each train.

The Bombardier trains will have underfloor heating – a first for UK trains – which will work with an overhead heating and ventilation system to improve passenger comfort and increase foot room for passengers sitting in window seats.

The trains are significantly lighter than previous trains and feature regenerative braking which delivers energy back into the electrical supply network, rather than wasting the energy, through heat, as is the case with conventional systems.

The first of the new Bombardier trains is due to enter passenger service later this year.