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A train on Daegu Metro Line 1 in August 2017
Image: Candidates · Archive

In rail transport, a train is a vehicle or (more frequently) a string of vehicles capable of being moved along a continuous line of rails or other guideway for the purpose of conveying freight or passengers between points on a predetermined route. The train may be hauled or propelled by one or more vehicles designed exclusively for that purpose (locomotives) or may be driven by a number of motors incorporated in all or several of the vehicles (multiple units).

As of 2006, there are approximately 1,370,782 kilometres (851,764 mi) of railway track in use worldwide.


Selected article

A BNSF freight train in the Mojave Desert in 2007

The BNSF Railway Company (reporting mark BNSF) is one of the largest freight railroad networks in North America, second to the Union Pacific Railroad (UP) (its primary competitor for Western U.S. freight), and is one of seven North American Class I railroads. It has 44,000 employees, 32,500 miles (52,300 km) of track in 28 states, and operates more than 8,000 locomotives. It has three transcontinental routes that provide rail connections between the western and eastern United States. BNSF trains traveled over 169 million miles (272 million km) in 2010, more than any other North American railroad. The BNSF and UP have a duopoly on all transcontinental freight rail lines in the Western U.S. and share trackage rights over thousands of miles of track. The creation of BNSF started with the formation of a holding company on September 22, 1995. This new holding company purchased the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (often called the "Santa Fe") and Burlington Northern Railroad, and formally merged the railways into the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway on December 31, 1996. On January 24, 2005, the railroad's name was officially changed to "BNSF Railway," using the initials of its original name. On November 3, 2009, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway announced it would acquire the remaining 77.4 percent of BNSF it did not already own for $100 per share in cash and stock - a deal valued at $44 billion. The company is investing an estimated $34 billion in BNSF and acquiring $10 billion in debt. On February 12, 2010, shareholders of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corporation voted in favor of the acquisition.

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RENFE freight train

RENFE Class 251 electric locomotive number 251.020 pulls a freight train through a mountainous region in Spain in January 2016.

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A Genesee & Wyoming Australia freight train in 2008

Selected anniversaries

October 20
Eugene V. Debs



Trains News

2017 in rail transport

  • ET 325, the eastbound unit involved in the February 9 accident, photographed in 2015
    February 9, 2016 – Two Meridian-branded passenger trains collide in a head-on collision at Bad Aibling in southeastern Germany. In total 11 people die and 150 others are injured, including 20 seriously. Early reports suggested that the accident may have been the fault of the dispatcher allowing two opposing trains on a single-track section of line, but police investigating the incident have dismissed theory this as "pure speculation." (Bavaria Police) (Bavaria Police) (Tages Spiegel) (Tegernseer Stimme) (RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland) (BBC)
  • Washington Metro's McPherson Square station in 2012
    January 22, 2016 – In anticipation of heavy snowfall and preparation for the effects of winter storm Jonas, Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority (WMATA) shuts down all services for the weekend. Metrorail services, which constitute the second largest rapid transit system in the United States, are suspended as of 11:00 pm and will remain closed until Monday morning. Action to shut down the system was previously taken in October 2012 during hurricane Sandy. Trains will be stored in the system's subway tunnels to shelter them from the storm. (WMATA) (WMATA) (Washington Post) (The Hill)
  • Flag of China
    December 30, 2015 – Construction begins on the Ningbo–Fenghua Intercity Railway in China. The 21.8-kilometre long (13.5 mi) line, expected to open in 2020, will be a suburban metro line connecting Gaotang Bridge Station to Jinhai Road Station. (CNNB)
  • A CRH2A train at Nanning station in 2007
    December 11, 2015 – The first phase of the Nanning–Kunming High-Speed Railway, connecting Nanning to Baise, opens. This first section of double track mainline was built to allow CRH2A trains to travel up to 250 kilometres per hour (160 mph). The newly constructed line, which will eventually connect to Kunming, will be Yunnan Province's first high-speed transport corridor to the sea. (GXNews)
  • Flag of Pakistan
    November 17, 2015 – The Jaffar Express passenger train traveling from Quetta to Rawalpindi, Pakistan, derails killing 20 and injuring almost a hundred others. The train's driver and assistant driver were among the fatalities. Early reports indicate that the train's brakes had failed; Pakistan Railways is investigating the accident. See also: Aab-e-Gum derailment (Dawn) (Daiji World) (New Kerala)
  • The rear power car of the derailed train
    November 14, 2015 – A test TGV train traveling eastbound on the southern track of the LGV Est high-speed rail line derails as it enters a curve at 265 km/h (165 mph) in Eckwersheim. The accident killed eleven crew and injured the remaining 42 persons aboard, which included 4 children who were not authorized by SNCF to be on the train. According to investigators, late braking, which led to the train entering the curve at excessive speed, was the immediate cause of the accident. (BBC) (DNA) (SNCF)



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