DB Cargo and DB Schenker run new rail service
Delivery within five to eight days to Bulgaria, Greece or Turkey: The weekly PowerRailer shuttle starts in either Sturovo, Slovakia, or Sopron, Hungary, and takes just a few days to reach Sofia, Thessaloniki, Athens or Istanbul. The route also passes through Belgrade and Skopje.
PowerRailer’s speed outstrips trains run by regional state railways because it benefits from the “grouping effect”: individual wagons are combined to form a block train of up to 1,600 tonnes bound for a single destination, and, it is not necessary to shunt the wagons into new single wagonload trains at every stop.
According to a joint press release, this saves time, but it cuts costs too. The prices are below prices for trucking to destinations in southeast Europe. “This is the reason why our system offers potential for every kind of consignment without a private siding at either the place of loading or unloading,” explains Thomas Gerstgrasser, product manager at DB Schenker. The price customers pay includes onward transport from the station by road.
There are other services on offer, too: a local centre of expertise, processing and dispatch notes in each national language, and optional interim storage with delivery available to all major industrial and economic centres in the destination country within 24 hours. The PowerRailer service uses company wagons as well as privately owned wagons, and it can transport almost all types of dangerous goods (excluding explosive and radioactive material) as per RID.