After the Pentecost weekend with a nine-euro ticket, the staff representatives of Deutsche Bahn reported that the employees were under a lot of strain.

"As expected, the nine-euro campaign triggered a great rush on regional trains, which led to significantly more cases of congestion nationwide," said the Vice-Chairman of the General Works Council of DB Regio, Ralf Damde, to the newspapers of the editorial network Germany (RND ).

"The feared physical assaults against the railway staff did not occur, but there were verbal attacks," said Damde.

The massive additional need for personnel made thousands of overtime hours necessary at Pentecost alone.

Despite the many additional vehicles used, passengers had to be turned away.

"Everywhere in Germany the platforms and the trains were full, in several cases overcrowded trains had to be cleared - but fortunately no stations."

700 reports of overload

According to the first evaluations of the problem reports from the train drivers, there were about 400 trains nationwide every day that were too full, so that passengers had to be turned away or bicycles could not be taken along.

In total, there were around 700 reports of overloads, problems with passengers or disruptions to the operations center every day.

That is significantly more than on an average weekend and also significantly more than on the Pentecost weekends before the Corona crisis.

The fact that many travelers without rail experience could not find their way on the platforms or in large stations led to increased personnel and time expenditure, Damde explained.

"All in all, the passengers needed significantly more help than usual. This also included the fact that many people who had not traveled by train for a long time did not know

The additional use of vehicles has led to overtime for the railway staff across the board, especially for train drivers, customer advisors, service and cleaning staff and maintenance staff, Damde told the RND.

"In exceptional cases, this is possible, but not permanently," he also said.

"Many railway employees are already walking on their gums."

The FDP transport politician Christian Jung told the Hessischer Rundfunk that the ticket shows that the train is “only partially prepared for additional capacities in local transport and to tourist destinations”.

"Because of its condition, the railway infrastructure is not designed for such increases in capacity," he continued.

Whether more people could be won as passengers in public transport from September after the end of the discount ticket also depends on the quality of the services and reforms in local transport, such as the elimination of confusing network borders.

Meanwhile, according to the FDP politician, rail freight traffic in Germany partially collapsed over Pentecost and even before that.

"Hundreds of freight trains from private railways, European state railways and Deutsche Bahn stand still in Germany every day or cannot even come to us." The reason for this is "the management problems" at the group and the "catastrophic state of the German rail network,” said Jung.

9-euro ticket as a field test

Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) had described the 9-euro ticket launched at the beginning of the month as a "field test".

It is an opportunity to examine to what extent the price is the entry hurdle for public transport or whether more attractive offers are important.

"In this way we can gain important insights into exactly this question and adjust our public transport offer accordingly." And greater use of public transport helps to achieve the climate protection goals in the transport sector.

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