Due to the extremely low water levels in the rivers of Germany and Europe, container jams occur at many ports. Many of the goods, such as mineral oil and coal, are now to be increasingly transported by rail.

Freight trains first? Delays in passenger transport could become more frequent. (Source: Pixabay)

Container jam in port

In the last few weeks, container ships that can no longer put out to sea have been gathering in the Rhine ports. The water level is simply too low. But not all freighters are stuck. Some pass the flat fairway of the Rhine, albeit with significantly less load. However, the fact that the terminals of the ports are almost fully utilized is mainly due to the lockdown in Shanghai, which also affects the port. The Ukraine war is also making its contribution. The low water is now doing the rest and exacerbating the situation.

Free travel for freight trains?

The Federal Ministry of Economics and Transport has now drawn up an ordinance that temporarily regulates freight transport: freight trains carrying coal, gas, crude oil and other products important for energy supply are to be given priority on the rails.

When the ordinance comes into force, this may mean more delays in staff traffic. Train passengers would then have to wait. Transport Minister Volker Wissing sees this measure both necessary and justified. After all, it is also in the interest of the passengers that the energy supply is secured, he explained in the ARD “Morgenmagazin”.

It is not yet certain whether the freight trains will actually be given priority. This will probably become clear in the next few days.


Source: spiegel.de (German)