A TRAIN company has invested in hi-tech equipment aimed at slashing delays and cancellations.

Greater Anglia is set to roll out the new Automatic Vehicle Inspection Systems at Southend Victoria sidings to help boost performance of its engines.

The system, which will also be used in London, will measure damage and wear to wheels, check the wear on pantographs which get power from the overhead wires to the train, as well as look at the condition of brake pads and discs and the profile of the train itself.

The equipment, which is partly built into the track bed and partly installed on a gantry, also checks for damage, loose nuts and high temperatures.

The system works via remote monitoring and feeds back faults that need fixing via a data link to the train manufacturer and maintenance firm Bombardier.

As a result, faults can be identified and fixed more quickly to help prevent delays and cancellations.

Surveys and design work have been undertaken at Greater Anglia’s Orient Way and Southend maintenance depot sidings.

Arthur Callan, Greater Anglia project manager for the new system, said, “We’re excited about this new system which will help us further improve performance with our partner, Bombardier Transportation.

“More trains have been running on time this year, but we are continually working to invest in and improve our train maintenance programme so that we can provide the best possible service to customers.”

In the most recent four week period, ending May 25 this year, Greater Anglia’s overall punctuality figure was 93.7 per cent.

The company is also set to replace every single train with new ones over the course of this year.

Air conditioning, plug and USB points and free wifi have been promised by the company as part of the new investment.

Greater Anglia will also be introducing better timetables with more frequent services and more peak-time seats into London from various points in Essex.

For more information visit www.greateranglia.co.uk