SNCF has announced it will be stepping up preparations in order to minimise the impact of winter conditions (cold, snow, frost) on railway system components. The railway company has recently invested 90 million euros, 40 million of which has been spent on adapting rolling stock, 28 million on developing infrastructure and 22 million on better passenger information.
With regard to rolling stock, SNCF has invested in new technologies such as deicing spray for trainset bogies, and a new, more effective deicing product for pantographs.
As for infrastructure, investment has mainly focused on the purchase of remote-controlled anti-frost heaters for track switches and vehicles fitted with scrapers to remove ice from catenaries. SNCF has also started trackside vegetation-clearing work and thorough cleaning of track switches and their controls. In stations, staff are being deployed to clear snow and grit the platforms. Finally, SNCF may introduce speed restrictions and adapt the timetable depending on the severity of the weather.
To support these measures, the company is improving its customer information and is making preparations to improve care for passengers in the case of bad weather.
(Source: SNCF – 22/11/11)