West Midlands Metro services to resume by the end of May?

It looks like there will be no service on the West Midlands Metro until the end of May as repairs to the trams continues at Wednesbury Depot. The news that it will take over two months between initial suspension and a resumption in services has come in the latest official update on the West Midlands Metro website.

To reminder readers (if any reminder is needed – in effect we could copy and paste this paragraph!) the reason for the suspension back on Saturday 19th March was because of the discovery of further cracks in the Urbos3 trams around the doors. After investigations by engineers from manufacturer CAF it was decided rather than undertake repairs on these panels the best course of action would be to replace them.

That takes us up to now with work underway at Wednesbury Depot to undertake the repairs. Workers from West Midlands Metro have been joined by staff from CAF in Spain and also from Belgrade (where they have had similar issues) to accelerate the work but despite this it still looks like the end of May for services to start up again. They are also looking to see whether some of the work can take place off-site.

The statement reads: “Works to restore the West Midlands Metro services have been progressing and we now expect to be in a position to resume passenger services by the end of May 2022.

“Alongside the manufacturer, CAF, we have now completed a detailed assessment of the tram fleet and begun a schedule of works to replace cracked body panels that will enable trams to return to service as quickly as possible.

“Midland Metro Limited (MML) has required the manufacturer to replace the panels rather than repair the existing ones to ensure the future reliability and robustness of the service.

“While works are well underway at the Wednesbury depot, further steps are being taken to accelerate the repair programme, including securing additional ‘off site’ workshop facilities. Further details of where trams may be sent for repairs will be confirmed in due course. In the meantime, we have also brought in additional engineers from across the UK and overseas that have the necessary skills to carry out these specialist panel replacements.

“This week has also seen another new tram being cleared for operational service after successfully completing a thorough testing and commissioning programme as we strive to rebuild fleet availability. Our new tram fleet continues to be tested and will be running through the network to ensure they are ready for when the service recommences.”

There remains pressure from officials throughout the West Midlands to get trams up and running again – particularly with high profile events such as the Commonwealth Games coming at the end of July. But even when services do resume there will always be the question being asked of how long before something goes wrong again?

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1 Response to West Midlands Metro services to resume by the end of May?

  1. andy walters says:

    In the first Week there will at least one Tram failure, proberbley around priest field
    Most likely 38, at thd end of thd first month there will be a very reduced service due milage exams and no trams to cover the trams that are off.
    In a few years, more body problems will show up, most likely around the front saloons roof tops, due to the battery weight given years of stress. Only time will tell.

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