After millions of pounds spent extending overhead electric lines west, commuter trains from Ealing Broadway to Reading and Didcot will now run on electric power and are extended in length.
This will mean less diesel trains belching out fumes as they run through the area and stopping at stations. Though not all will be banished.
— Meet Innovation 🤓 (@MeetInnovation) January 3, 2018
Another bonus is that electric trains are quicker than diesel as they aren’t dragging around heavy engines. Faster journeys should be coming along as more services switch over.
Longer trains will also be seen. The older diesel stock is moving west to the Bristol area. They were often 2-5 carriages. The electric trains will be 8.
My first electric train from Reading to Didcot, and with delicious irony we overtake an IEP on diesel leaving Reading. Fair test too. Acceleration= capacity, THIS is why you electrify #OLE #rail pic.twitter.com/UjBhWF4M5r
— Garry Keenor (@25kV) January 2, 2018
The process of electrification has not gone without a hitch. Cost overruns and cut backs mean that many longer distance trains to Wales and the west country will be dragging diesel engines despite running on electric for most of the way.
Cutting the last stretches of electrification has resulted in the need for engines on-board which increases weight and slows down acceleration, not to mention adds to costs.
Delaying electrification to Oxford also mean diesel persist there, and doesn’t free up trains to move alleviate overcrowding in the west of England.
But on the whole, for west London there’s a lot of advantages and better services to now enjoy.