DB introduces tighter criteria for sleepers inspection
The various inspection rounds of sleepers across Germany in recent months have resulted in new, tightened procedures at Deutsche Bahn (DB) regarding future inspections. DB has stated that it will implement “stricter criteria for the classification of damaged sleepers with a specific additive”.
Sleepers in Germany have been at the centre of attention since last year’s deadly derailment in the state Bavaria. Investigations have thus far revealed that the presence of faulty sleepers cannot be ruled out as a contributing factor to the 2022 derailment that caused the death of five people.
DB is currently inspecting sleepers throughout Germany
DB is still in the process of inspecting 180,000 sleepers nationwide. If potential problems are identified, the regular set of measures such as speed restrictions, route closures, and immediate replacement will also remain. DB maintains that the tighter regulations come on top of what are already stringent inspection procedures.
The inspection rounds have led to more than traffic restrictions at 168 locations at least, and compensation will have to be paid to operators affected by the delays. Last August, DB said the resulting financial damage would end up in the hundreds of millions. It needs to be mentioned that DB did not offer any more specifics on what kind of additive they mean and said that it will provide further information once they have it.
This article was originally published on our sister publication RailTech.com