Posts Tagged ‘PKP IC’

No trains to Zamosc

Thursday, 10 September 2009

PKP IC cuts 10% of its trains

Zamosc

Town square Zamosc. Photo Maciej Ukleja.

(Click to see original on Wikipedia and for details of licensing.)

Starting 1st September, PKP InterCity has cut 10% of its long-distance services. Most of the slashed trains are pospieszny (semi-fast) trains which PKP IC had taken over earlier this year from PKP Przewozy Regionalne.

Many trains have been cut back and no longer run the full distance forcing passengers to change trains or take a bus for part of their journey. Other trains only run on one or two days a week. Slupsk and Rybnik have lost their direct services to Poznan, Katowice and Gdansk. Lodz has lost its direct train from Szczecin as well as trains to Czestochowa and Cracow. While Zamosc, with 66,600 inhabitants and a UNESCO world heritage site has lost all its rail passenger services.

Confusion and tears as IC takes over PR

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

ticket

Pospieszny train ticket issued in Kalisz for a journey to Lodz. It says ‘Przewozy Regionalne’ sp z o.o. on the top left and PKP IC on the middle right.

On 1st December, PKP InterCity (IC) took over the operation of the pospieszny semi-fast trains from PKP Przewozy Regionalne. Our roving reporter grabbed a pospieszny train from Lodz Kaliska to Kalisz to see how the new arrangements worked out in practice. Here is his report.

Lodz Kaliska is the name of one of one of the smarter night clubs in Lodz. It is also the name of the surrealistic semi-finished, semi-post-modern Lodz Kaliska Station. There was once a comfortable railway station here in typical Lodz art noveau style. The authorities, hoping no doubt for a few bungs from the contractors, decided that the station needed rebuilding, but after a couple of decades of building works, got fed up with the project and left it half-finished.

For a station building barely 10 years old, Lodz Kaliska is dreadfully shabby. The automatic doors don’t open. The catering arrangements are a disgrace. The train indicators in the subway don’t work. The leaking roof in the ticket hall, supposedly ‘fixed’ a few years back at enormous cost, still leaks. You get the picture.

The only ticket office that was open said ‘Przewozy Regionalne’. There were no information leaflets about the new pricing arrangements, or any timetables to be had. The ticket clerk explained that there was no point in printing timetables, because on 14 December the train timetable was going to be changed anyway. I made a mental note that Infrastructure Minister, Cezary Garbarczyk’s injunction to PKP senior managers that they should learn to love their passengers had clearly not yet trickled down to the chaps who ran PKP IC.

The train conductor entered my compartment with a smile. I smiled back, I’m not sure whether I should congratulate you or commiserate.

I’m not sure either, she replied. I’m still with Przewozy Regionalne, but InterCity need another 30 conductors so I may transfer.

What will it mean for passengers, I asked.

Well, it won’t be good news, she confided. Previously you could could by a combined ticket which would allow you to travel by pospieszny train to say Zdunska Wola and then complete your journey to one of the less important stations by an osobowy, but now you will need separate tickets, which will be more expensive.

At Kalisz I checked the time of my train back to Lodz at the Przewozy Regionalne window. The clerk explained that she now worked for InterCity. I hadn’t bought a return ticket because I wasn’t sure whether I would be back in time for the 18:13 osobowy, or the last train of the day back to Lodz, the 19:52 pospieszny.

In the evening I returned to Kalisz station in time to catch the pospieszny. There was a queue at the booking office because the man at the head of the queue had just been told that he could buy a pospieszny season ticket – which would no longer be valid for the osobowy train that he used to take to work in the morning. Or he could buy an osobowy season ticket which would not valid or upgradable for travel on pospiesny trains. If he wanted to travel out to Ostrow Wielkopolski in the morning on a osobowy train, and return in the evening on an pospieszny, as had been his wont, he would have to buy two season tickets. He could not believe what he was being told, but in the end the truth sank in and he bought a single pospieszny ticket to Ostrow. No doubt, from today, he is travelling by bus.

Just before Pabianice we slowed down to a crawl to pass over a level crossing. We then slowly passed a stationary osobowy with a very worried looking train crew standing in a huddle in the cab. After we passed the train. I could see a police photographer taking pictures of the track that the osobowy had just passed. A body, covered in green plastic sheeting, lay across the track. Not a very good day for PKP.