BELGIAN National Railways (SNCB) has now completed work on 136 coaches under the mid-life overhaul and refurbishment programme for its 492-strong type M6 double-deck fleet.

Deliveries of the type M6 began in 2001, and they are the most widely deployed vehicles in the SNCB fleet, operating mainly on InterCity (IC) services between Belgium’s major towns and cities. They were designed for a working life of 40 years.

The mid-life overhaul and refurbishment programme began in 2018 at SNCB’s Cuesmes workshops in Mons. With 70 coaches now being turned out every year, it is due for completion by 2029.

Interior refurbishment work has included installing at-seat power sockets. Photo Credit: SNCB

Each M6 coach spends 45 days in the workshop under a 15-stage programme. Mechanical work includes bogie inspection and the testing of braking and door actuation systems.

Refurbishment work includes installing 40 at-seat power points in each coach. The M6 coaches were originally fitted with six sockets at the ends of the car for powering cleaning and maintenance equipment.

Foam seat cushions and seat coverings are being replaced, as well as floor coverings and internal signage. Air-conditioning equipment is also examined during the overhaul programme.

SNCB says that particular attention is paid to recycling parts that are removed during overhaul.

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