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  • #46
    Bangkok’s first boat-to-rail link up and running at Phra Nangklao Pier

    Phra Nangklao Pier is seeing an increasing number of passengers, a week after Bangkok’s first boat-to-rail link opened on July 1.

    The Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA) launched the pier to connect with the MRT Purple Line at Phra Nangklao Station under the Transport Ministry’s integrated wheels-rails-boats policy.

    The new pier gives MRT commuters access to Chao Phraya Express Boats (green flag)​ and Mine Smart Ferry electric passenger boats. The electric boat service runs Monday to Friday, 6am-7.50am and 4.20pm-5.45pm. Meanwhile, a red flag air-conditioned express boat service between Phra Nangklao​ and Sathorn Pier will launch soon.:

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    • #47
      July 16, 1891: The day rail travel was sparked in Thailand

      The Embassy of Denmark on Friday marked the date when King Rama V presided over the construction of Thailand’s first railway, which was built by Danes.

      The embassy’s Facebook post explained that King Chulalongkorn got the idea of building a railway in his Kingdom after travelling in trains during his visit to Europe in 1886.

      The king believed that running a railway track between Bangkok and Samut Prakan would be an economic blessing and ordered the construction of Paknam Railway.

      The 20-year concession for the railway was handed to Danish firm, the Paknam Railway Co Ltd, established by brothers Andreas and Louis de Richelieu and British navigator Alfred John Loftus.

      Construction of the line began on July 16, 1891, and was completed in April 1893.

      The Paknam Railway was the only privately owned railway in Siam and quickly became a lucrative business for the Danish brothers thanks to its popularity.

      However, rail travel lost its popularity with the arrival of public buses and private cars after World War II, and by the 1950s, Paknam Railway was running at a loss.

      Though the railway was closed in 1959 to make way for Bangkok’s Rama IV Road, the Paknam Railway is a prime example of Thailand and Denmark’s close collaborations, especially in terms of infrastructure.:
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      • #48
        No green light for soft opening of Red Line train service due to Covid-19

        The soft opening of the Red Line urban train, previously scheduled for August 2, would be postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a source from the Transport Ministry revealed.

        The Red Line, running from Bang Sue to Rangsit and Taling Chan stations, will help shorten travel time between the city’s heart and urban areas to under 30 minutes thanks to the high-speed (120kph) trains.

        After the soft opening, the train will offer the service free of charge for about three months before its official opening for commercial use in November.

        “Due to the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak, which has prompted the government to impose a partial lockdown and curfew in 13 dark-red zone provinces, as well as limit intra- and interprovincial travel, the ministry has agreed that the soft opening next month should be postponed,” said the source.

        “The ministry will announce the new opening date after it thoroughly evaluates the situation.”

        The source added that construction and all system installations of the Red Line were fully complete.

        “The State Railway of Thailand [SRT] and SRT Electrified Train Co Ltd have conducted trial runs of all systems periodically,” the source said. “During the delay, they will continue to conduct test runs to make sure that the Red Line operates smoothly when it finally opens for public use.”

        The Red Line urban train comprises two routes. The Bang Sue–Rangsit route is 26 km long with 10 stations with a total travel time of 25 minutes. The Bang Sue–Taling Chan route is 15 km long with three stations and will take about 15 minutes. The fare ranges from THB12 to THB42.:

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        • #49
          BTS passengers down 80 per cent from pre-Covid numbers

          There is an 80 per cent decline in passengers using the BTS Skytrain compared to their numbers before the Covid-19 crisis, the Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTSC) said.

          BTSC director Surapong Laoha-Unya revealed that from an average of 800,000 passengers/trip/day during normal times, the number had fallen to 170,000 to 180,000 per trip on a day.

          He said the decrease in traffic would have only a slight impact on BTSC's annual revenue, as the company had received THB40 billion from the government for constructing the Yellow and Pink Line of MRT railways. The revenue from the construction would be acknowledged next year, he added.

          Surapong also said that the opening of the Pink Line would be delayed from March 2022 to the middle of that year, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, the Yellow Line service will be opened in March 2022 instead of December this year.:

          Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


          • #50
            BTS has got to be hurting
            Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


            • #51
              Hi-speed rail work delayed over curbs

              The government's ban on moving construction workers during the latest Covid-19 uptick has adversely impacted the progress of the Thai-Chinese high-speed rail project, the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) said on Tuesday.

              A number of construction work for the project — which are subdivided into 14 separate contracts — have to be put on hold because of the stricter restrictions, which means the previously agreed deadline won't be met, according to SRT governor Nirut Maneephan.

              The project will see the construction of a 250.8km high-speed rail link at a cost of 179.4 billion baht between Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima.

              Among the works which will have to be postponed are the construction of a 23km track between Nawa Nakhon and Ban Pho worth 11.5 billion baht, a 31.6km track between Phra Kaeo and Saraburi worth 9.4 billion baht, and the construction of a 6.5-billion-baht train maintenance depot in Chiang Rak Noi.

              The other work which will have to be postponed — presumably until next year, according to Mr Nirut — is the 10.5-billion-baht construction of the section between Don Muang and Nawa Nakhon.

              In another development, the SRT's board has approved the proposal to extend the contract of a consultancy firm that was brought on to manage and supervise the construction of the Thai-Chinese high-speed rail project, Mr Nirut said.

              The SRT had initially agreed to engage the consultants over a 60-month period for a payment of 1.2 billion baht.

              However, Mr Nirut said, delays in signing a number of contract — in particular Contract 2.3 that deals with rail support systems, including electric and mechanical signalling, carriage procurement and staff training — meant the contract will lapse before the required work are completed.

              As such, he said, it is necessary to extend the firm's contract from 60 months to 85 months.:

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              • #52
                SRT Red Line opens at 6am on Monday

                Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will preside over a virtual soft opening ceremony of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) Red Line from Bangkok’s Bang Sue Grand Station on Monday, August 2.

                The first Dark Red Line service will leave Bang Sue for Rangsit at 6am on Monday. The Light Red Line Bang Sue-Taling Chan service will launch at the same time.

                Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob said the service will be free of charge for the first three months before fares come into operation from November.:

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                • #53
                  Red Line launch sparks Bangkok’s electric transport revolution

                  The long-awaited Red Line commuter train service launches with a soft opening today (August 2) – two years behind schedule and more than 14 years since the project got the Cabinet nod in May 2007.

                  The new suburban rail service could be a game-changer for Bangkok, cutting congestion and pollution for a population of more than 10 million people who are still heavily reliant on cars and buses.

                  The Red Line uses futuristic white Hitachi electric trains sporting distinctive bright red stripes on both sides. Its dedicated tracks with overhead power gantries are reminiscent of Japanese railway lines.

                  This is a big change for the 130-year-old State Railway of Thailand (SRT), whose fleets mostly comprise diesel-powered locomotives – and more recently diesel-electric trains.

                  Virtual launch

                  On the morning of August 2, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is scheduled to preside over the Red Line’s launch ceremony via video link from Government House.

                  Meanwhile, Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob, SRT Governor Nirut Maneephan and other Transport Ministry executives will be on hand to welcome travellers at Bang Sue Grand Station, where free Red Line rides will run until the end of October.

                  Red Line trains run on two routes – north from Bang Sue Grand through Bangkok’s suburbs to Rangsit and west to Taling Chan.

                  The Bang Sue-Rangsit route, called the Dark Red Line, stretches 26 kilometres and has 10 stations. The Bang Sue-Taling Chan route, known as the Light Red Line, is 15 kilometres long and has only three stations.

                  Aboard the Hitachi trains, which boast an average speed of 120km/h and a top speed of 160km/h, it will take about 25 minutes to ride the entire Dark Red Line and 15 minutes for the Light Red Line.

                  Commercial operation of the Red Line starts in November. The fares will range from Bt12 to Bt42for the entire route – Bt12-38 from Bang Sue to Rangsit and Bt12-27 from Bang Sue to Taling Chan, according to the transport minister.:

                  Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                  • #54
                    that red lines is special

                    got to ride it one day
                    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                    • #55
                      Red Line to launch contactless card payment by December

                      The State Railway of Thailand (SRT) Red Line will launch contactless payment by credit and debit cards by December, the Transport Ministry announced on Tuesday.

                      Passengers will be able to pay their fares via an EMV (Europay Mastercard and Visa) ticketing system for journeys on the Bang Sue-Rangsit and Bang Sue-Taling Chan lines.

                      The EMV system will be operated with Krung Thai Bank.

                      Meanwhile, cross-system ticketing that also covers the MRT Blue Line and Purple Line is expected to launch around February next year. The Transport Ministry has asked the SRT and MRTA to determine conditions for a single-payment system that covers both networks.

                      The Red Line fare rate has been set at 12-42 baht, though the fare structure per kilometre will be finalised after passenger data is examined next month. For example, it may cost 12 baht to travel one station and 14 baht to travel two stations. However, the fare to travel the entire line must not exceed 42 baht.:

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                      • #56
                        Rail Dept vows to upgrade Thai railway to international level

                        The Department of Rail Transport on Wednesday approved a draft document to establish international standards for Thailand’s electric train system.

                        The document contains three measures to upgrade the electrified rail service:

                        1. Standards for the design, installation, testing and verification of power distribution systems. The standards will apply to mainline commuter trains and intercity trains powered by AC electricity.

                        2. Standard requirements for transformers used in substations, to power the AC drive system or to power ancillary services for electrified main lines.

                        3. Standards for all rolling stock.

                        The Department of Rail Transport is also preparing international standards for civil infrastructure, mechanical and rail transport vehicles, electrical and signalling, and safety standards.:

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                        • #57
                          Study begins on rail line along Bang Na-Trat Road

                          Consulting firms are carrying out a feasibility study on a light-rail link between Bang Na intersection and Suvarnabhumi International Airport, which the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration intends to build and operate under a public-private partnership model.

                          The firms, which were contracted to carry out the study on May 14, are TEAM Consulting Engineering and Management Public Co Ltd, Avantgarde Capital Co Ltd, InfraTrans Consultants Co Ltd, Daoreuk Communications Co Ltd and PSK Consultants Co Ltd.

                          The study, which began on June 11, is intended to analyse the costs and benefits of building the light rail project, which is intended to boost local economic activity along the route.

                          The study is expected to take about two years, said deputy Bangkok governor Sakoltee Phattiyakul.

                          According to the proposal, a new light-rail route will be built along Debaratana Road, also known as Bang Na-Trat Road. It will be connected to the BTS Green Line, which would help improve public transport links to Suvarnabhumi airport and help commuters around Bangkok's border with Samut Prakan.

                          The line's construction isn't expected to have much impact on local residents, as most of it will be built on a straight line along one road, Mr Sakoltee said.

                          The project will be divided into two phases. The first phase will see 12 stations built between Bang Na intersection and Thana City Housing Estates -- namely Bang Na, Prapha Montri, Bang Na-Trat 17, Bang Na-Trat 25, Wat Sri Iam, Prem Ruethai, Bang Na Km 6, Bang Kaew, Kanchanaphisek, Wat Salud, King Kaew and Thana City stations.

                          The second phase will connect Thana City with Krirk University and Suvarnabhumi airport, Mr Sakoltee said.:

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                          • #58
                            Five solutions being considered to tackle noise pollution from red line trains

                            The Department of Rail Transport (DRT) has offered five solutions to tackle noise pollution from electric trains and suburban trains in Bangkok and its vicinity after complaints from the public about the dark red line, Bang Sue - Taling Chan.

                            The Department of Rail Transport clarified that the construction of electric trains and suburban trains in Bangkok and its vicinity had been designed and analysed for environmental impacts.

                            An environmental impact assessment report had been prepared in accordance with Section 46 of the Enhancement and Conservation of National Environmental Quality Act BE 2535 and its amendments for noise and vibration to be in accordance with the standard, the department said.

                            The department said it had examined and found that there were no complaints about the rail network in the area that the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand was responsible for, on the Blue Line and the Purple Line. However, there were some complaints on the Green Line and the Dark Red Line.

                            The railways authority held discussions with the SRT, and reached the following conclusions:

                            1. The SRT has adjusted the train operation practice from the original 4am for trial runs to no later than midnight.

                            2. SRT has urged train operators to use the horn only when necessary.

                            3. SRT is considering the installation of soundproof walls in the community near the railway boundary to reduce the noise impact on the people.

                            4. SRT is considering closing the steerageway/installing a barrier to prevent intruders from entering the traffic area, which poses a risk and leads to use of horns.

                            5. The DRT and SRT carry out inspections and maintenance of roadways in good condition to reduce the noise effect, especially around curves.

                            Srisuwan Janya, president of the Association against Global Warming, had submitted a petition to the Office of the Auditor-General on August 20, acting on complaints from people affected by noise and vibration problems from various electric train lines, especially the dark red line trains. He stated that several complaints had been made to the relevant authorities, but no action was taken to fix the problem.:

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                            • #59
                              Trains to South still in service, but no further than Yala

                              An attack on a train on Saturday has left service to three southern border provinces -- Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat -- still continuing as usual, but trains terminate at Yala railway station and do not continue south to Sungai Kolok in Narathiwat.

                              A bomb exploded at 12.25pm on train No 986 on the Sungai Kolok-Bangkok route about one kilometre short of Tanyongmas station in Rangae district, Narathiwat province.

                              The passenger train had been repurposed to transport fruit, agricultural products and parcels from the deep South to Bangkok as part of measures to alleviate the hardship of people affected by travel restrictions and Covid-19 control measures.

                              Shortly after the bomb went off, gunshots were fired at the fifth carriage, where State Railway of Thailand (SRT) staff were sitting. None were hurt.

                              Following the incident, the SRT workers' union in Hat Yai, Songkhla, issued a statement condemning the perpetrators of the attack and called for security agencies to step up measures to protect trains and SRT staff from attacks.

                              On Sunday, trains to the three border provinces continued to operate as usual, including the train that was attacked on Saturday. However, all trains terminated at Yala station, with the remainder of the route to Sungai Kolok temporarily closed.

                              Railway police and defence volunteers were positioned on all southward trains from Songkla to step up security. Patrol units were deployed in high-risk areas along the route.

                              There were fewer passengers at the Hat Yai railway junction in Songkhla on Sunday morning.:
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                              • #60
                                Bombed freight train back in service

                                The freight train that was bombed and raked with gunfire on Saturday is now back in service on the Bangkok-Sungai Kolok route.

                                On Tuesday, the train arrived at the Hat Yai railway junction in Songkhla at 7.30am. It departed Hat Yai for Sungai Kolok at 7.58am.

                                Railway police and defence volunteers were aboard the train, providing security.

                                The train, designated No 985 for the Sungai Kolok-bound trip and No 986 for the Bangkok-bound trip, is a special service carrying agricultural goods and parcels between Bangkok and Sungai Kolok in Narathiwat, to reduce transport costs for farmers affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

                                The special service is scheduled to operate from Aug 26 to Oct 1.

                                On Aug 28, at 12.25pm, a bomb exploded on train No 986, heading for Bangkok from Sungai Kolok, when it was between Pa Phai and Tan Yong Mat stations in Narathiwat's Rangae district.

                                After the explosion, gunshots were fired at one carriage. The train and the rail track were damaged, but nobody was hurt. The attack briefy halted all train services in the area, while track repairs were made.

                                The special freight train resumed service on Tuesday.:
                                Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


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