DB refuses to take over another Prague – Berlin EC, CD issues statement

A Taurus locomotive in CD livery. Credit: Ceske drahyA Taurus locomotive in CD livery. Credit: Ceske drahy

DB left the train in Decin despite agreements to take it as far as Dresden.

One of the Czech Railways’ (CD) most prestigious long-distance connections suffered yet another collapse. Due to technical faults, Deutsche Bahn did not take over one of the CD trains in Decin again on Sunday. Promises to better check the trains’ technical condition and an agreement to stop the defective trains in Dresden were not fulfilled.

The problem occurred on the morning EC 176 train from Prague to Hamburg. According to available information, some carriages were too tilted. The wagons will undergo inspection at a CD depot.

About 300 people were on the train. Passengers had the option to either board a passenger train to Bad Schandau or wait for the next train two hours later. Czech Railways informed about the problem and the outage was also published in the Deutsche Bahn reservation system.

This is the fourth case of a train shutdown in three weeks. According to transport minister Martin Kupka, it was agreed with the German side that in the event of a problem the train would be stopped in Dresden instead of Decin.


Earlier today Ceske drahy issued a statement on the issues with Berlin- and Hamburg-bound trains. According to CD, DB train crews refused to take over trains which a subsequent check showed to be in order. CEETransport.com brings you a translation of the CD statement.

Ceske drahy statement

Czech Railways has taken further measures to stabilize operations on the Prague – Berlin – Hamburg line where there have been four cases of Czech trains stopped from continuing to Germany this year. Reasons for this were either discovering a technical fault that manifested itself while the train was in operation or a suspected technical fault. In some cases, a depot inspection did not confirm the suspected fault that prevented the trains from continuing into German territory.

“German train crews refused to take over trains because of alleged faults that were not confirmed in retrospect. That is why we decided to send a specialist technician to Decin to assess any disputed cases on the spot and decide whether the car in question can continue its journey or not. In this context, we have asked DB to cooperate with us to avoid cases where technical matters are decided by the German train crew and it is subsequently found that the carriage was in order,” said Jiri Jeseta, Member of the Board of Directors and Deputy CEO of CD for Passenger Transport.

“The cars that were stopped yesterday were inspected, measured, and weighed today. The technical parameters found are in full compliance with technical standards and maintenance regulations. Therefore, this was an erroneous assessment of the technical condition of the vehicles,” added Michal Kraus, Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors and Deputy CEO of CD for Service.

The Prague – Berlin ECs in Germany operate at 200 km/h. The carriages on these trains must meet the defined technical requirements under the RIC Agreement (governing the exchange and use of coaches in international traffic). Cars that meet these requirements are used on this line. The same types of cars are used on other lines as well, e.g. to Hungary, Poland or on national express services.

Czech Railways has taken other measures in the form of more extensive checks of cars in the Prague depot and the relocation of reserve cars from other depots. The situation is complicated by the fact that some of the cars are out of operation for scheduled inspections at ZOS Vrutky. However, the repairer extends their maintenance dates to multiples of the planned deadlines. Cars that should have long been back in operation are still in Slovak workshops, among other things, due to delayed deliveries of Knorr brake components. CD is putting maximum pressure on the car repairers to keep maintenance on schedule.


Edited and translated by Lucie Trávníčková.

Tagy České dráhy Deutsche Bahn EC Berliner Prague - Berlin route
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