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NI Railways tackling leaf fall

5 October 2017

Translink NI Railways is working hard to minimise disruption caused by leaf fall, which can cause problems at this time of year.

Mark Atkinson, Head of Civil Engineering at NI Railways explained, “Leaf fall season leads to challenging conditions on the rails as fallen leaves get crushed between the rails and train wheels, making the rail head slippery. This in turn can make it difficult for trains to accelerate and brake. We have teams working hard to combat these conditions to keep our services running safely.

“Around £4 million has been invested in a bespoke multi-purpose engineering train which uses high powered water jets to clear the tracks, before depositing a grit like substance on the rails to prevent slip. We spend around £450,000 each year keeping the tracks as clear as possible during leaf fall season”.

Mark continued: “As well as information leaflets and posters, we have an animation on our website and social media channels which reminds our passengers how they can keep up to date with service information this autumn”. 

In conclusion, Mark said: “We would like to assure our customers that we are doing all we can to keep services running on time and keep any delays to a minimum. We would urge passengers to check our social media channels, the Translink Journey Planner App and for up to date travel information.

For further information on how Translink is managing leaf fall visit 


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