Bratislava [SK] - All 120 new trolleybuses delivered!
J. Lehmann - 07.12.15
In late October 2015, Skoda Electric announced per press release that the delivery of 120 new trolleybuses to the Slovak capital city had been successfully completed. In late September, the last articulated unit 6866 received formal authorization, after the trolleys 6858, 6859, 6863, 6865, 6866 and 6868 all had already entered revenue service in August. The 20 single units of the Skoda 30Tr type arrived in Bratislava in September and were successively numbered as 6016-6035. The last of the lot entered regular service on 23 October 2015.
Coinciding with the fleet renewal process, several more Skoda 14Tr and 15Tr trolleybuses in the old red and white livery were withdrawn. Specifically these were 6275, 6296 and 6620. As of early December 2015, only a dozen of each of these older types remained in active service.
Of the 6 Irisbus/Skoda 25Tr articulated trolleys, which were introduced in 2006 and fitted with a Kirsch APU 100 kW generator as well as an Iveco diesel motor, only 6703 was in regular use during summer and early autumn 2015, while the rest of the series had to await the re-supply of spare parts. Normally, the 25Tr units run on line 33, which is an isolated island operation and not connected by overhead wires to the rest of the local trolleybus network. In order to cover for the shortage of 25Tr vehicles, the 31Tr were therefore pressed into service on line 33, but as these trolleys are not fitted with off-wire power packs, they had to be dragged there by a diesel truck. As of October and November 2015, the availability of the 25Tr units returned to normal, allowing them to once again cover services on route 33.
Top: Just a few days after entering revenue service, Skoda 31Tr Nr. 6868 is seen at the route intersection with line 203 on 3 September 2015.
Bottom: The older Skoda 14Tr Nr. 6287 has been repainted into the all-red livery of the modern vehicles. Here it is seen turning on Hroboňova Street into the trolleybus depot of the same name. The sign on the exterior wall makes reference to the EU funding that was used for the modernization of the facility. Photos: J. Lehmann
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