SLOVAKIAN national passenger operator ŽSSK has commenced using Stadler GTW three-car Stadler Rail class 495.95 EMUs on the Electric Tatra Railways (TEŽ) network in the High Tatra mountains.
However, operation has yet to restart on the 5km rack-and-pinion section of the 1000mm-gauge line between Strba and Štrbské Pleso due to the delays in the modernisation of the 5km section.
ŽSSK is currently operating two of the five 80km/h EMUs, which use 1.5kV dc overhead electrification. These trains have entered service around six months late and only operate as single-sets for the time being, with Slovak national rail safety authority Dopravný Úrad yet to authorise the EMUs to operate in multiple. This is expected to be approved when the rack-and-pinion line reopens early next year.
ŽSSK ordered five EMUs and one hybrid diesel-electric locomotive from Stadler in 2018, all suitable for both conventional and rack-and-pinion operation. The Stadler EMUs are replacing class 405 EMUs and enable through operations from Štrba and the rest of the TEŽ network for the first time.
Each class 495 offers 91 seats, two spaces for wheelchairs and space for skis, bicycles and other outdoor equipment.
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