New Zealand EM class electric multiple unit

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New Zealand EM/ET class
Tranz Metro EMU Wellington.jpg
EM 1367 leading a southbound four-car train on the Hutt Valley Line, 17 May 2003.
In service May 1982 – present
Manufacturer Ganz-Mavag, Budapest, Hungary (electrical components from GEC traction, United Kingdom)
Constructed 1979 – 1982
Entered service May 1982 – 1983
Refurbishment Tranz Rail 1996 – 2002 (entire fleet) and
Metlink/Tranz Metro 2010 (one unit)
Number built 44
Number in service 25
Number scrapped 0
Formation 1 EM + 1 ET per unit
Fleet numbers EM 1004 – 1528
ET 3004 – 3528
Capacity 148 seats
Operator Tranz Metro
Depot(s) Wellington
Line(s) served Kapiti Line, Hutt Valley Line, Melling Line
Specifications
Car body construction 20.73 m (68 ft 0 in)
Train length 43.06 m (141 ft 3 in) per Unit.
Car length 21.53 m (70 ft 8 in) over Couplers.
Width 2.72 m (8 ft 11 in)
Height 3.73 m (12 ft 3 in) without pantograph
Platform height 0.73 m (2 ft 5 in)
Doors 8 electrically operated sliding twin doors (centrally controlled)
Maximum speed 95 km/h (59 mph)[* 1]
Weight EM: 37.6 t (37.0 long tons; 41.4 short tons)
ET: 34.5 t (34.0 long tons; 38.0 short tons)
Power output 400 kW (540 hp)
Power supply Motor-alternator producing 230 V 50 Hz AC
Train heating Heating only
Electric system(s) 1600 V DC overhead
Current collection method pantograph
UIC classification Bo-Bo+2'2'
Braking system(s) Westinghouse "Westcode" electropneumatic brakes[1]
Westinghouse automatic air brakes[1]
Rheostatic brakes fitted but not used
Multiple working Within class only
Track gauge 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm)
Notes
  1. ^ The maximum design speed is 110 km/h (68 mph)

The New Zealand EM/ET class (also known as Ganz-Mavag) electric multiple units are used on Metlink suburban services in Wellington, New Zealand. They are owned by the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and operated by Tranz Metro, part of national railway operator KiwiRail.[2]

The 44 two-car units of an EM motor car and an ET trailer car were introduced between 1982 and 1983 on the 1500 V DC electrified Kapiti Line, Hutt Valley Line and Melling Line. Since the introduction of the "Matangi" FP/FT class in 2011–12, they have largely been relegated to peak services.

The name "Ganz-Mavag" comes from the units' manufacturer, Ganz-Mavag of Hungary. It is widely used by the GWRC and in the media to distinguish them from other electric multiple units used on the Wellington suburban lines.

Introduction[edit]

The cost was NZ$33 million, then the single largest order of rolling stock in New Zealand Railways Department's history. This cost was partially offset by a barter agreement involving the Hungarian Government buying New Zealand dairy products, chiefly butter.

Their introduction spelled the end of the carriage trains hauled by the EW electric locomotives, though electric-hauled carriage trains were temporary reintroduced behind the EO locomotives between 2008-2011, and Wairarapa Line services are diesel-hauled. A number of the older English Electric DM/D units were retained, mainly for use on the Melling and Johnsonville Lines.

The introduction of the units also coincided with the project to extend the electrification on the Kapiti Coast from Paekakariki to Paraparaumu.

Service[edit]

The EM class have served as the primary rail commuter vehicle since their introduction in 1982, running in anything from a single unit (2-cars) to an 8-car unit depending on the service being operated. They have also seen service beyond the electrification, being used behind diesel locomotives as carriages to carry people to the annual Toast Martinborough wine festival in the Wairarapa.

The introduction of the new Matangi units from 2010 has seen a reduction in the number of services being operated by the class, with most off-peak services handed over to the Matangi’s in June 2012. However the ability of the EM’s to run in an 8-car formation, something the Matangi’s are limited in doing owing to the amount of current that they draw from the overhead system, continues to see them utilised for the more heavily patronised peak services, particularly on the Kapiti Line.

Johnsonville Line[edit]

The class were not operated on the Johnsonville Line as they were out-of-gauge and had insufficient braking capacity. While tunnel and platform clearances were improved in 2009, it was not envisaged that the units would be used on the line;[3] due to their limited braking power on the steep grades.[4]

Two units have visited Johnsonville on test trains; on Sunday 14 June 1992 EM 1004 and its trailer ET 3004 was towed behind shunter DSC 2285 to measure clearances at platforms and tunnels.[5] On Sunday 18 April 2010 EM 1056 plus trailer ET 3056 ran under its own power on a trial to check clearances for the Matangi units.[6]

Incidents and accidents[edit]

Three units were involved in a collision north of Plimmerton on 30 September 2010. The northbound train (consisting of EM 1010, ET 3010, EM 1154 and ET 3154) derailed after hitting a slip caused by heavy rain and fouled of the southbound line. Less than a minute later it was struck by southbound unit EM 1223 and ET 3223, which did not derail, but the collision caused extensive damage to both cabs. Sixty passengers and crew were on the two trains. Two people were hospitalised. The drivers of the trains were father and son.[7]

The damaged units were initially towed back to the EMU depot north of Wellington station, where later the two undamaged halves - EM 1010 and ET 3223 (renumbered to ET 3010) were marshalled together as a unit. The damaged cars, EM 1223 and the original ET 3010, were towed to storage at the Hutt Workshops and used as parts sources.

On 20 May 2013, ET 3309 derailed crossing Wairarapa junction, on the approach to Wellington Railway Station, puncturing a hole in the floor. It was the rear car in a two-unit consist operating the 07:43 Porirua to Wellington service, subsequently stranding thousands of morning peak commuters across the network as it blocked both the Kapiti and Hutt Valley lines. All units were temporarily withdrawn after the derailment for urgent safety inspections, but most were back in service for morning peak the next day.[8] Preliminary investigations suggest when one of the unit's spring park brake assemblies was replaced in March 2013, two split pins were not inserted into the bolts securing the assembly to the undercarriage, allowing the assembly to come loose over time and ultimately caused the derailment. Two air reservoir tanks came loose in the accident and pushed the air compressor behind them upwards through the floor, creating the hole.[9]

Other incidents involving EM units include:

  • 22 March 1997 – EM 1079 and ET 3079 travelling northbound hit a car on the Sutherland Avenue level crossing, between Heretaunga and Trentham stations. The train had passed the signal immediately before the crossing while at danger, and therefore failed to trigger the crossing alarms.[10]
  • 25 August 2011 – EM 1315 and ET 3315 travelling southbound came within metres of hitting two track gangers working on the line south of Paekakariki. The person in change of the work site let the unit through the work area on the advice that the line was clear; he was subsequently found to be under the influence of cannabis.[11]
  • 28 March 2013 – EM units 1246/3246, 1102/3102 and 1315/3315, operating a Wellington to Taita service, started from Wingate station with the doors open and no passenger staff on board. A trainee driver and their minder thought they heard the "right-away" buzzer and proceeded without double-checking the door open light had gone out. Unlike the later Matangi units, there is no interlock on the EM units preventing the train moving with the doors open.[12]

Refurbishment[edit]

In 1995 a major refurbishment program of the class began, with the EMUs repainted in the then standard Tranz Rail Cato light blue and yellow livery with new seats and brighter interiors. This refurbishment program was completed by 2002.

Other minor upgrades were made in the mid-2000s, replacing the original diamond pantographs with single-arm ones and adding ditch lights.

In 2008 a proposed refurbishment was deferred until the new Matangi units were available. The projected expenditure was $23.3 million in 2008 - 2009.[13] The prototype refurbished unit was completed at the end of 2010.[14]

EM 1373 and ET 3373 were fully refurbished to ascertain unit costs and gauge public opinion, including repainting into the new Metlink livery. A decision to refurbish others in the fleet was made on 10 March 2011 as part of an $88 million rail upgrade package, instead of purchasing more Matangi.[15] However in August 2012 GWRC announced its preference for ordering 35 more Matangi units instead of refurbishing the remaining units.[16] [17]

Withdrawals[edit]

The introduction of the Matangi units allowed for the withdrawal of several Ganz units, with those in the best mechanical condition retained for running peak services only. Those units that were withdrawn were stored initially at Thorndon, before most were relocated to the Hutt Workshops. GWRC called for expressions of interest in the disposal of these units.[18]

In June 2013 GWRC announced that it had come to terms for both the purchase of an additional 35 Matangi units and the sale of 42 of the Ganz units to a South African buyer, with one unit to be retained in New Zealand for preservation.[19]

Shipping of 17 units withdrawn as of 1 January 2014 commenced from 17-19 February 2014 with loading into the cargo vessel MV Pangani bound for South Africa were they will be converted into carriages for operation in Tanzania and Zimbabwe. The remaining units will be shipped once replaced by the second tranche of Matangi units from mid-2015 [20][21]

Class register[edit]

Key: In service Out of service Auckland Transport service Preserved Overhaul/Repair Scrapped
EM number ET number Introduced Withdrawn Location Current Livery Status/Notes
1004 3004 August 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1010 3010 July 1982 January 2013 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Involved in collision, 30 September 2010. EM 1010 returned to service with former ET 3223 renumbered as ET 3010. Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1027 3027 June 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1056 3056 August 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1062 3062 June 1982 January 2013 Hutt Workshops Tranz Rail blue Stored at Hutt Workshops.
1079 3079 June 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1085 3085 July 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1091 3091 July 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1102 3102 June 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1119 3119 August 1982 May 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1131 3131 May 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1148 3148 August 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1154 3154 August 1982 November 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Involved in 30 September 2010 collision, at rear of train, not damaged. Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1160 3160 August 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1177 3177 August 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1183 3183 August 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1217 3217 October 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1223 3223 October 1982 February 2011 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Involved in collision, 30 September 2010. ET 3223 was renumbered ET 3010 and returned to service with EM 1010. Stored at Hutt until being shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1246 3246 September 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1252 3252 September 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1269 3269 September 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1281 3281 October 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1298 3298 November 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1309 3309 October 1982 May 2013 South Africa Tranz Rail Blue Derailed on 20 May 2013 and suffered underfloor damage. Withdrawn from service. Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1315 3315 November 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1321 3321 November 1982 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail Blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1338 3338 December 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1344 3344 December 1982 June 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail Blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1350 3350 December 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1367 3367 December 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1373 3373 December 1982 Wellington Metlink First Metlink refurbishment[22] Back in service October 2010.[23]
1396 3396 December 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1407 3407 December 1982 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1413 3413 January 1983 January 2013 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1436 3436 January 1983 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1442 3442 January 1983 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1459 3459 February 1983 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1465 3465 February 1983 May 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail Blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1471 3471 February 1983 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1488 3488 February 1983 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1494 3494 February 1983 October 2012 Hutt Workshops Tranz Rail blue Stored at Hutt Workshops.
1505 3505 March 1983 Wellington Tranz Rail blue
1511 3511 March 1983 October 2012 South Africa Tranz Rail blue Shipped to South Africa in February 2014.
1528 3528 March 1983 Wellington Tranz Rail blue

References[edit]

  • Gregor, Alex W - New suburban electric trains for Wellington (July 1981 NZIE Transactions Vol. 8, No. 2/EMCh pp33–45)
  • Parsons, David - New Zealand Railway Motive Power 2002 [24]
  1. ^ a b Sinclair, Roy (1992). Rail, the Great New Zealand Adventure. Grantham House Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86934-013-1. 
  2. ^ "$168m Wellington Rail Package Signed". The Dominion Post. 5 July 2011. 
  3. ^ Peter Glensor of the Greater Wellington Regional Council in the Northern Courier of 17 February 2010 page 5
  4. ^ ONTRACK staff comment on Johnsonville Line Open Day 4 February 2009
  5. ^ Hermann, Bruce J; North Island Branch Lines p 66 (2007, New Zealand Railway & Locomotive Society, Wellington) ISBN 978-0-908573-83-7
  6. ^ "Express, KiwiRail staff newsletter - Issue 39". KiwiRail. 22 April 2010. 
  7. ^ "Two with spinal injuries after train crash". New Zealand Herald. 30 September 2010. 
  8. ^ "Wellington trains stopped after derailment". Fairfax NZ News. 20 May 2013. Retrieved 20 May 2013. 
  9. ^ Chapman, Katie (25 October 2013). "Train fault undetected for 63 days". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 26 October 2013. 
  10. ^ "Investigation 97-103 -- Electic [sic] Multiple Unit 3656, collision with motor vehicle, Trentham, 22 March 1997". Transport Accident Investigation Commission. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "Investigation 11-103 -- Track workers nearly struck by passenger train near Paekakariki, North Island Main Trunk, 25 August 2011". Transport Accident Investigation Commission. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  12. ^ "Investigation 13-102 -- Passenger train travelled with doors open, Wingate - Taita, 28 March 2013". Transport Accident Investigation Commission. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 
  13. ^ GWRC 2008/09 Annual Plan, approved 30 June 2008
  14. ^ "Agency Progress Report on implementing the Regional Land Transport Strategy". Greater Wellington Regional Council. 14 April 2010. 
  15. ^ "Capital gets $88 million rail upgrade". The Dominion Post. 10 March 2011. Retrieved 26 April 2011. 
  16. ^ "Wellington’s trains: replace or refurbish?". Greater Wellington Regional Council. 23 August 2012. 
  17. ^ "Hutt railway workshops won't get $80 million contract". Stuff/Fairfax. 23 August 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  18. ^ Michael Forbes (12 March 2013). "Council puts stripped down trains up for sale". The Dominion Post. 
  19. ^ Forbes, Michael (17 June 2013). "Train deal a 'win-win' for commuters, ratepayers". The Dominion Post (via Stuff.co.nz). Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  20. ^ "Ganz Mavags bound for new African lease of life". 
  21. ^ "Next stop Africa for Capital's well-used trains". 
  22. ^ "RailTrack". 
  23. ^ "General Manager's Report". Greater Wellington Regional Council. 10 August 2010. 
  24. ^ [1]

External links[edit]