Train drivers learn tricks for significant electricity savings

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An energy saving program for train drivers run since 2002 by the German national railroad company, Deutsche Bahn, is expected to reduce energy consumption by 10%. Program head Heinrich Strössenreuther says that on a single Intercity express train journey from Hamburg in northern Germany to Munich in the south a good driver can reduce electricity consumption from 19,000 kWh to 15,000 kWh, the equivalent of saving the electricity used by a four person family in a year, or the electricity generated by a 1.5 MW wind turbine in about seven hours. Depending on the train schedule, the most important element is to make use of gradients and weather conditions by switching off and letting the train roll as much as 60 kilometres before the next railway station stop, says Strössenreuther to Greenpeace's German magazine.

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