Railports Carex

EURO CAREX : Cargo Rail Express

Operation › Rail slots

Securing night-time slots to meet the needs of CAREX shippers

In order to run a train between two points on a rail route, rail operators must secure timeslots from the appropriate rail infrastructure operators.

In the context of the Carex project, the securing of night-time slots is vital to the viability of the service and its ability to work in phase with shippers' transport schedules, and particularly those of express carriers.


Réseau Ferré de France (RFF) has therefore been tasked with studying the feasibility of making these night-time slots available on the high-speed rail routes of France. The purpose of the "Slots & Maintenance Periods" study was to identify conditions under which trains can be permitted to travel at night, and put forward a solution for arranging maintenance periods and procedures in such a way as to minimise the negative impact on journey times.

RFF and its counterparts in Europe: Infrabel (Belgium), ProRail (The Netherlands), Eurotunnel, HS1 (UK) and DB Netz (Germany) were involved in the studies.

In practice, achieving continuity of slots between rail networks requires a significant amount of synchronisation on the part of infrastructure operators.

Meeting with Mercitalia representatives

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A Euro Carex delegation met representatives of the Italian rail transport company Mercitalia, which will launch a high-speed railfreight service in Italy in October 2018.