Class S12 Specifications:
Locomotive Class: S12
Manufactured Country: China
Manufactured Company: China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock Corporation (CSR)
Imported Year: 2012
Type of Locomotive: Diesel Electric
Prime Mover: MTU V12 4000R41
Maximum Power: 1950hp (1450kW) – 1800RPM
Maximum Speed: 100kmph (Restricted to 80kmph)
Axel Arrangement: Bo-Bo
Weight: 76 Tons (Power car only)
No. of Power Units Imported: 23
No. of sets: 13
Locomotive Numbers: 917-939
These DMUs were imported to Sri Lanka to fulfill the necessity of new, comfortable trains under the long-term loan schemes from Chinese Government. Class S12 DMU is also manufactured by China South Locomotive & Rolling Stock Corporation (CSR) who manufactured Class S10 & Class S9 DMUs. So the exterior appearance is similar to Class S10 DMUs.
Three types of S12 DMUs were imported to run on the Main Line & KV Line as follows
- Main Line S12s: Seven sets (2 power cars per set)
- KV Line S12s: Four sets (one power car per set)
- Full A/C Luxury S12s: Two sets (2 power cars per set)
Accordingly total number of power units should be 22. But 23 power units were imported including an extra power unit. Extra carriages were also imported each from a carriage type. Therefore the total number of power cars & carriages is 120.
Technical information of Class S12 is the same as the Class S10. Click here to go to the Class S10 article.
There are some identical differences between Main line & Kelani Valley S12s. The light blue colour of the S12 KV is lighter than the colour of S12 ML. And S12 KV sets has only one power car while S12 ML & S12 Luxury sets powered by two power cars at each end.
There is a Driving cab & a Guards’ cabin in each power car in these Push & Pull type locomotives. A toilet for the guard is also included in this MCG.
Seats of the Main line S12s are arranged perpendicular to the train as in most of the trains. Carriages are classified as 1st class, 2nd class & 3rd class (E class at present) according to their facilities.
First class coaches are air conditioned. The adjustable seats in 1st class are much more comfortable & can be rotated an angle of 360 to view the surrounding with ease. There are 4 LCD screens & an Audio system in each 1st class carriages for the entertainment of the passenger. The internal doors of the 1st class is controlled by a touch sensitive switch. Availability of the power sockets allows the passengers to use their laptop or even charge their mobile devices while travelling.
Second class carriages don’t have above mentioned facilities but the seats are comfortable than 3rd Class. There are foldable tables for each seat in 2nd class & a fixed table for 3rd class seats. Additionally a 3rd class buffet car also included in a main line S12.
A main line S12 consist of 10 units including two power cars, a first class carriage, 2 second class carriages, 2 third class carriages, a reserved 2nd class carriage, a reserved 3rd class carriage & a 3rd class buffet carriage. An internal communication system is fixed to all carriages for the drivers & the guard to speak to the whole train.
Before the arrival of S12 to the up country line, the passengers who are travelling to Kandy in Badulla bound trains had to disembark at Peradeniya Junction because Badulla bound trains didn’t run up to Kandy. The reason is the wastage of time to uncouple the locomotive & to couple it to the front of the train. But now Badulla bound S12 DMUs run up to Kandy because they don’t need to swap locomotives. At present both ‘Udarata Menike’ & ‘Podi Menike’ trains run up to Kandy before they head to Badulla.
Vestibules are available in both main line & KV S12s for the passengers to move between coaches. S12 KV is the first DMU with vestibule facility which ran on the KV line. A S12 KV set has 5 units including a power car, a dummy car & 3 passenger cars. Seats of these DMU’s are made of fiber & arranged parallel to the train as in S8, S9 & S10 DMUs. The length of a S12 KV passenger car is only 15m & it’s smaller than other classes. And these carriages have only 4 doors per carriage. Normally DMUs have 6 doors per carriage. These features enable the Class S12 KV sets to run on the Kelani Valley line.
Luxury S12 DMUs consist of fully air conditioned passenger cars & an air conditioned buffet car. The specifications of these carriages are as same as the S12 1st class carriages.
Although there are few differences among these types of S12s, these DMUs can run on any railway line in Sri Lanka. S12 DMU is the first DMU which ran beyond Nawalapitiya on the main line since Class S3 DMUs were in service on up country tracks. That’s a time period of nearly 50 years. After Kelani Valley railway line was converted to a Broad gauge line from narrow gauge, only S8 was able to run on it out of the present DMUs before the arrival of Class S12. So S12 KV is the first DMU made specially for the KV line.
This is the most powerful DMU which runs on the up country tracks. A power car has a power of nearly 2000hp. Therefore a set has a power of about 4000hp & it’s easier to climb the inclines of the up country. And the availability of Dynamic Brakes allows these DMUs to run on up country tracks without any danger.
A major defect in all of these S12 DMUs are the unsuitable footboard. It’s shorter & smaller & it’s difficult for the passengers to get on board from a low platform.
S12 KVs are used for office trains & other slow trains in KV line & also up to Rambukkana on the main line. S12 Main line sets are used to haul Udarata Menike, Podi Menike & Galu Kumari trains. S12 Luxury trains are used for Colombo-Kandy Intercity train & Mount Lavinia-Jaffna Intercity Train.
S12 KV sets are maintained by Electric Power Coaches Shed at Maradana & Main line & Luxury S12s are maintained by the Running Shed at Dematagoda. All of these sets are in service. No.921 power car hit an elephant once & its face got seriously damaged. Now it’s back on service after the repaires done at Rathmalan Railway Workshops.
Credits to Gehan Chandika & Nipuna Dodanthenna.