FILE - The US-based General Electric Co will provide 100 locomotives to the Egyptian Railway Authority (ERA) starting March
CAIRO – 27 December 2018: The US-based General Electric Co will provide 100 locomotives to the Egyptian Railway Authority (ERA) starting March to test them before use, according to Head of the Railway Authority Ashraf Raslan.
Raslan remarked that after the authority approves them, 10 locomotives will be delivered each month and the testing of the locomotives' operation will take three months; hence, all locomotives are expected to arrive to Egypt by mid-2020.
He further remarked that 75 locomotives will be used in the passenger transport Sector while 25 others will operatein the ERA freight sector.
In June 2017, Egypt signed a $575 million agreement with the US-based General Electric Co to provide 100 multi-use locomotives, 15-year technical support and spare parts as well as maintenance and upgrade for 81 trains.
The head of Railway Authority added that the railway network will be entirely developed by 2022.
Earlier, the Ministry of Transportation announced that four mega development projects aiming to upgrade the railway signaling will be fully completed by 2022.
In addition, the ministry announced that 1300 train cars will be added to the railway network in addition to 100 new tractors to increase rail safety.
The Egyptian government decided to focus on the railway sector and worked on rolling out new accident prevention measures to promote rail safety; most recently was the inducement of a new system entitled "the license system", which is expected to take effect in 2019.
According to ERA, approximately 1,000 train collisions take place in Egypt each year.
The new system stipulates that the worker must undergo drug and psychological tests as a strict and indispensable condition to take on any rail-related job; that is in addition to advanced trainings and courses to ensure optimal performance.
Also, workers need to undergo similar tests when renewing their work license every two years.
According to the Railway Authority, and under the new system, no worker can be transferred to work in other railway lines before undergoing training and courses dedicated specifically to each respective line.