02/22/2011 AT 09:47
The new Train Energy Management System (TEMS), which is being piloted on 20 of the company's Class 444, 450, 455 and 458 trains, will allow improved environmental performance through the development of new eco-friendly driving techniques.
The first five trains to be equipped with the TEMS, also known as the railway energy meter, has now been completed and is back into service on the London Waterloo to Reading line. A total of 20 trains are scheduled to be equipped with the technology by May 2011.
The energy meter allows the South West Trains engineering team to accurately determine the energy used by trains on a specific route. One of the biggest impacts will be the ability to improve the environmental performance of each and every South West Trains service, through developing new eco-friendly driving techniques which reduce electricity consumption.
Christian Roth, Engineering Director for South West Trains, said: “Rail is already one of the most environmentally friendly modes of public transport and we are committed to making it even greener. Our latest initiative to reduce energy consumption builds on the work we have already done and demonstrates our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint even further.
“We are optimistic that this pilot project will help us deliver a further 10% reduction in energy from the development of eco-friendly driving techniques.
“Currently our electric trains account for almost 90% of the total South West Trains fleet and these trains run around 33 million miles every year. This means there's clearly huge potential to make a real difference in terms of energy reduction.”
The scheme will generate valuable data which will be assessed by train engineers and driver managers. It will provide advice to drivers of all trains on the techniques most appropriate to the individual route to maximise the use of the electricity. On-board passenger amenities, journey times and reliability will not be affected by the results of the trial and will remain at the same levels as currently.
As part of Stagecoach Group's five year carbon reduction plan, South West Trains' fleet has also been equipped with regenerative braking technology to harness the energy from braking and return it as electricity to the rail system. Other initiatives include an upgrade to station lighting to new energy efficient systems which use 60 per cent less electricity.
Work started this week to prepare for the construction of a new entrance and ticket office at Wandsworth Town station, providing better facilities for passengers.
South West Trains is now operating its new winter timetable which started on Sunday, 12th December. Following feedback from passengers and stakeholders, the new winter timetable will benefit passengers travelling between Lymington Pier onwards to Southampton or London Waterloo.
South West Trains confirmed the average fare on its network is to rise by 6.5% from January 2011.
South West Trains, part of the Stagecoach Group, remains one of Britain's most punctual train operators, according to the latest official performance data released today by Network Rail.
South West Trains, the UK's biggest commuter rail operator, is pioneering a new bike and ride initiative that will allow travellers to make greener integrated journeys.
Construction work started at Staines station on 16 August to provide passengers with step-free access between the station entrance and the platforms to make the railway more accessible for everyone.
There remains a high level of satisfaction amongst South West Trains passengers, according to an independent passenger survey released today by national transport watchdog, Passenger Focus.
Stagecoach Group's two rail franchises, East Midlands Trains and South West Trains, have received awards for safety, improved levels of performance and passenger satisfaction.
Commuters cycling to Surbiton Station can enjoy their train journey knowing their bikes are safe and secure following the introduction of a new cycle lock up.
New ticket prices effective from 2 January 2010 will also see no increase in the average fare paid by passengers across the South West Trains network.