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Trains in the Netherlands

Trains in the Netherlands

There are two types of double decker trains:

  • the DDM (Dubbeldeks Materieel) train, consisting of one or more combinations of 3 or 4 coaches; there are two varieties (see [1] (http://home-2.worldonline.nl/~fgvdhurk/ddirmddm.htm)):
    • without motors, coupled to an electric locomotive;
    • the mDDM: one of the coaches in the combination has electric motors and a single passenger deck on top; the level of this deck is higher than that of a regular single deck rail car, but lower than the upper deck of the other coaches of the mDDM.
  • the DD-IRM (Dubbeldeks Interregio Materieel), also called Regiorunner; a train consists of one or more combinations of 3 or 4 coaches; each combination (multiple unit) has electric motors; an electronic display in the cars which is supposed to show the final destination of the train is often not set properly, showing the starting station instead; occasionally a moving text is shown; interestingly, moving texts are in italics, though the display resolution is too low to show static italics (an apparent shift of a fraction of a pixel is obtained by a corresponding time delay).

The Koploper (ICM) (Intercity Materieel) is a 3- or 4-car multiple unit that when coupled with another one, allows passengers to walk through (Koploper is literally "head walker").

The rail cars ICR (Intercity Rijtuig = intercity carriage) are pulled by an electric locomotive. Unlike for the other trains, reversing direction requires moving the locomotive to the other side. At the back end passengers can have a view on the track, though not when seated.

  • The Benelux train running between Amsterdam Centraal and Brussels-South consists of an electric locomotive and six carriages similar to the ICR, except that the last one has a driver's cabin, for controlling the locomotive when it pushes the train.

One of the older train types still in use is the Mat '64 multiple unit:

triple Mat '64 (Plan V)

There are three varieties:

  • Mat '64 (Plan V), a 2-car electric multiple unit (the picture shows a train consisting of three of these);
  • Mat '64 (Plan T), a 4-car electric multiple unit; with respect to seating arrangement and lighting there are three varieties; in one variety the lighting is rather meagre for reading;
  • Mat '64 (Plan U), a 3-car diesel-electric multiple unit.

The ICE3 runs between Amsterdam Centraal and Germany.

The Thalys runs between Amsterdam Centraal and Paris-North.

In the summer there is a night train between Amsterdam Centraal and Paris-North. Although much slower than the Thalys, it is popular with budget tourists: some rail passes are not valid in the Thalys, and sleeping in the train saves the cost of a hotel. There are sleeping cars at a supplemental fee, but many people spend the night sitting in a seat, or, if it is not crowded, lying on seats. Although not permitted, some people smoke cannabis.

Train accidents in the Netherlands with passengers or crew killed or injured (not complete)

  • 20 March 2003 Roermond - NS passenger train collides head-on with freight train - NS driver killed, 6 passengers seriously injured.
  • 8 January 1962 - Harmelen train disaster: two passenger trains collide head-on, 89 passengers and both drivers killed [2] (http://danger-ahead.railfan.net/accidents/harmelen/home).

External links

See also Transportation in the Netherlands.

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