Flirt stands for Fast Light Innovative Regional Train. The new trains improve travel comfort and the level of service on the rail services to Kirkkonummi by leaps and bounds.
“Flirt trains are mainly low-floor and there are no doors between vestibules and passenger compartments. The trains also have air conditioning,” tells HSL’s Director of Transport Services Reijo Mäkinen. “However, in order to get the full benefit of the low floor trains, the stations along the coastal line need to be upgraded. As the Flirt trains are the only commuter train type that can be operated on the Ring Rail Line, the number of Flirt trains on the coastal line may decrease when services on the Ring Rail Line start.”
“Older rolling stock is still in service in peak times but the aim is to operate the off peak services to Kirkkonummi mainly with the Flirt trains,” says Mäkinen.
The rolling stock company Pääkaupunkiseudun Junakalusto Oy, jointly owned by HSL’s member municipalities and VR, has ordered in total 41 Flirt trains from the Swiss Stadler Bussnang AG.
The first Flirt trains entered into service in autumn 2009 and now there are already 30 trains in service. Stadler AG will deliver the rest of the trains to Junakalusto Oy during next year.
Some 50,000 journeys are made on weekdays on the coastal line. As one fourth of the commuter train service journeys in the metropolitan area are in the direction of Kirkkonummi, the new trains are much needed.