The contract has a duration of 10 years and Arriva will take over operations from incumbent Czech Railways (\u010cD) with the start of the 2019 timetable on December 9.\r\n\r\nArriva beat off competiton from \u010cD, Leo Express and Regiojet to win the tender, which represents the German Rail (DB) subsidiary\u2019s first Public Service Obligation (PSO) rail contract in the Czech Republic.\r\n\r\nPrague Integrated Transport Authority (Ropid) has long expressed its dissatisfaction with \u010cD\u2019s performance on Line S41, which until August 9 was the last in the country to be operated by \u010cD\u2019s 50-year-old class 451 EMUs. These trains had suffered poor reliability in the months prior to withdrawal and \u010cD frequently substituted the ageing EMUs with class 814 Regionova DMUs, which now operate all services.\r\n\r\nDespite the loss of Line S41, \u010cD is widely expected to win the contract to operate the heavily-used Line S9, which links Prague hlavn\u00ed n\u00e1dra\u017e\u00ed with the town of Bene\u0161ov 50km southeast of the capital. This route is also operated by \u010cD at present.\r\n\r\nArriva Vlaky is expected to withdraw its open-access Prague hlavn\u00ed n\u00e1dra\u017e\u00ed - Bene\u0161ov semi-fast service, which the company has been operating at its own financial risk since February 2016.\r\n\r\nLine S41 services will be operated by former DB class 628 DMUs (Czech class 845). Arriva Vlaky currently has six of these two-car trains, which are equipped with passenger Wi-Fi and at-seat power sockets.\r\n\r\nDiesel operation will only be temporary however, as Prague City Council wants to use electric trains. Arriva Vlaky expects to reintroduce electric operation from 2020 and has offered to obtain appropriate rolling stock.\r\n\r\nFreight operators are reportedly unhappy about the extension of Roztoky - Prague Libe\u0148 services to Prague Hostiva\u0159 as the line is here almost exclusively single track. Metrans, which serves a large intermodal terminal at Uh\u0159in\u0115ves near Hostiva\u0159 is particularly concerned about the impact on its international trains which use this line.\r\n\r\nThe city has therefore reached a compromise with the freight operators and Arriva Vlaky to restrict passenger operations on the Libe\u0148 - Hostiva\u0159 stretch to peak hours.