January 30, 2023

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The test run on Folloban was postponed until Friday after a fresh fire

The test run on the Folopan track was postponed after another incident involving overheating in the switch house. It is scheduled to reopen later this month.

Ban Nor’s CEO Gorm Frimannslund briefed reporters on the status of work at Follobanen on Monday.

– We are in the process of testing our facility. The trial run will last until January 31. Gorm Frimannslund, CEO of Ban Nor, says that we are working well and closely with Vy and will start the test run on Friday according to the latest plan.

The trial run was scheduled to begin on Monday evening, but has now been postponed to Friday.

The reason is that last Wednesday, an overheating was discovered in a junction box at the ski resort.

Ban Nor works to map the fault and checks the joints, cables and end results. One half of the switching house handles the power from the ski station and the other handles the power from the Blixtunnel.

– When there was an incident at the ski station and we discovered that there might be a connection, we had to see what operations we had to do before turning on the power to the facility, says managing director Stine Andrum.

Railway workers swing outside the Blixtunnel in Folopanen on Monday.

I worked over the weekend

Ban Nor sent a report on the situation to the Norwegian Railway Directorate on Monday. It was then forwarded to the Ministry of Transport.

Over the weekend there was a lot of work going on in the 22 kilometer long tunnel apart from work at the ski station.

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– Our most important task now is to troubleshoot, identify root causes, fix all faults, power up and start test runs so that we can run this train service, says Antrum.

The prestigious project, with a price tag of more than NOK 36 billion, opened on December 11, but had to close a few days later. A number of faults, fires or overheating have been detected in the facility.

The Foloban line has been closed for train traffic since December 20. Passenger trains must run around the “old” Østfold line.

Bane Nor and Vy have previously stated that the start of Follobanen will take place as early as February 1st.

– Be prepared that there may be some errors that we cannot detect in advance. The whole point of test driving, says Antrum, is to find these errors and fix them.

Experiments with multiple trains

The test starts with a train carriage. This will gradually expand to three double sets.

It will also consider whether to run six double coaches at night. But that depends on the test drive affecting as little traffic flow as possible.

– We test beyond normal schedule. Let’s emphasize the system rather than the normal schedule, says Andrum.