Diesel savings joy

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A SCHEME to cut fuel use and lower carbon emissions is proving so successful that train operator First TransPennine Express has saved 10 million litres of diesel in four years.

The savings were achieved after the train operator and train builder Siemens came up with a plan to change the way the diesel engines powering the train are used on steep inclines.

Going uphill, all three engines that power the train run at full power, but one or more is shut down temporarily when going downhill on routes which link Doncaster, Sheffield and Meadowhall to Manchester. Train drivers tailor their driving style to suit the terrain, with the help of an in-cab display which monitors how their driving affects the amount of diesel being used at different points along the way and shows how smooth acceleration and braking can make a real difference.

Fuel has also been saved by running the trains on only one engine when they are being moved to and from maintenance depots and turning the engines off if a train is standing in a station for more than a few minutes.