Humanitarian train bridge between Ukraine and Prague launched with partnersPublished: Mar 1, 2022 Reading time: 2 minutes
People in Need and RegioJet, together with ČD Cargo and Rail Cargo Group, are launching a daily humanitarian “train bridge” to connect Prague and other cities in the Czech Republic with Ukraine.
People in Need will be responsible for humanitarian aid logistics on these trains, with our director Simon Panek noting that "logistical and security problems have so far prevented us from bringing more humanitarian aid into the country; the needs are huge. The joint project of using trains with transfer to Ukrainian Railways and distribution to various places in the invaded country is great, and if it gets off the ground, it will mean hundreds and hundreds of tonnes, and that is already really significant aid."
These sentiments were further echoed by Radim Jančura, owner of RegioJet, who stated that "the train will be used for humanitarian transport of people free of charge. At the same time, in the direction of Ukraine, it will carry food, medicine, hygiene supplies, sleeping bags and other requested aid. The train will have both sleeper cars with a total capacity of up to 400 seats (with sufficient capacity for luggage) and pallet freight cars for the transport of humanitarian cargo up to 600 pallets per day, according to current possibilities. In total, we are counting on up to 20-car trains - we will provide Ukraine with a large daily capacity for transporting people and humanitarian aid."
Additionally, RegioJet will cover the costs of the operation. The humanitarian trains will run as night services from Prague to Přemyšl near the Polish-Ukrainian border. Then, in cooperation with Ukrainian Railways, it will continue via Lviv to Kyiv. The return service will run from Lviv to Přemyšl with a change to a RegioJet sleeper train running to Ostrava, Olomouc, Pardubice and Prague. The cross-border train connection is the fastest way to evacuate women and children from the war zone.
The Czech company ČD Cargo and the Austrian company Rail Cargo Group will provide the cargo wagons. In addition to Ukrainian citizens fleeing the war, they will also be used by aid workers and others helping in Ukraine or on its borders.
We want to thank Regiojet and ČD Cargo for providing this vital means of transport and Camping s.r.o., Pastee, Mana, Hervis, Alza, Rohlik, Rewe (Penny, Billa), Mall CZ, Drogerie Teta and Benu for providing humanitarian aid!