Kremlin considers Crimean train carriages unfit for Kerch Bridge

At a meeting in Simferopol, Russian Presidential Aide Igor Levitin has demanded that the fleet of passenger railway carriages in annexed Crimea be upgraded before the opening of the railway portion of the Kerch Bridge.

“Out of 20 instructions, four still need to be carried out. One of them is to upgrade the fleet of passenger carriages on the Crimean Railway by 2020. We need to calculate how much rolling stock is needed in connection with the launch of railway traffic on the bridge,” TASS cites Levitin as saying.

Earlier, the Crimean Railway company, which intends to start using the bridge in December 2019, created a provisional train timetable for 2020. It is presumed that during the first year of operation, 29 pairs of trains will travel between Crimea and neighboring Russia each day, including 15 passenger, 10 cargo and 4 commuter trains.

The Kerch Bridge has been designed for trains weighing up to 7100 tons. Passenger trains can cross it at 120 km/h, freight trains at 80 km/h.

The motorway portion of the bridge over the Kerch Strait was opened to light vehicle traffic on May 16. The railway portion has not yet been built.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that the illegal construction of the Kerch Bridge in Russian-annexed Crimea is further evidence of the Kremlin’s disregard for international law.

The EU and US have criticized the partial opening of the Kerch Bridge between Russia and annexed Crimea. In 2014, Ukraine withdrew from an agreement with Russia on the bridge’s construction, following the annexation of the peninsula.

  Russia, Crimea, Ukraine, Kerch Bridge