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VR-Yhtymä of Finland

VR-Yhtyma is the Finnish railroad monopoly with 175 year roots. It operates almost 500 locomotives, thousands of coaches and tens of thousands of freight cars. Until recently the company also owned a hyuge amount of infrastructure. VR-Yhtyma is allied with the mighty Russian Railways RzD, and the companies run together several cooperations like the Karelian trains, which operates Allegro Pendolinos between Helsinki, Finland and St Petersburg in Russia.

While we are working on this page the older page also exists.

VR Dv12 number 2548 is shunting a steel train in Pori, Finland
Picture above:

-- Click any picture to see a larger version of it! --

R1234: * 2548 *

Created for by John McKey and Andreas Ehnberg. Pictures by Stanislav Voronin, Ilkka Siissalo, Hannu Peltola, Andreas Ehnberg and John McKey.

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Also in this section:
An IC2 fo VR pulled by Swiss type Sr2 has just left Pasila, Helsinki on it's way to Turku in the west

Finnish Railroads Main Page, a great place to start browsing this section.

Junakalusto Class Sm5 on test drive meets Sm4 of VR-Yhtyma in Kerava, just outside Helsinki, Finland
Finnish railroad organizations and railroad operators have their own pages, as well as the largest operator VR-Yhtyma and a newcomer to the field Junakalusto.

While much of the passenger traffic concentrates around the capital Helsinki, you might be interested in the roster pictures of VR-Yhtyma, Junakalusto and the city of Helsinki operator HKL. HKL operates the metro and narrow gauge trams

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  VR Yhtyma Today

The VR-Yhtyma today has taken steps into modernizing its operations. Especially fast this has been at the time of the current management with CEO Mikael Aro. Many of the earlier bureaucratic peculiarities are now history. Also the company is clearly moving towards the modern day operator instead of "being everything associated with railroading".

But still the slow moving monopoly often ends up to curious situations. One of the latest has been an embarrassing period of lack of conductors for trains! Conductor in Finland equals captain in the ship, so the train can't leave without one or more aboard. The conductors along other Finnish workers have a law permitting 250 extra working hours yearly. This was filled for them collectively in early summer of 2011. Still in August of 2011 the VR had _not_ been able to solve the lack of conductors, which lead to severe shortage of operative staff and cancelled trains. The largest customer of VR, the HSL with its Chairman of the board Tatu Rauhamäki has since expressed openly to the media that he now wants the rail traffic opened to competition. According to Rauhamäki in Helsingin Sanomat (paper with 2,5 million readers daily) VR fails in its operations "whether it rains, snows of the sun is shining". And he also blames the railoperator for falling number of public transportation market share. The HSL should know the real figures and the real situation. They have been very successfull organizing other forms of public transportation, some of which are open to competition. Mikael Aro of the VR-Yhtyma expressed his apologies following the angry comments of their largest customer, but the next day the second largest newspaper in Finland "Aamulehti" (English: Morning paper)considered this all too mild to fix things. So the VR now faces both opening competition and angry customers.

The monopolistic situation hurts VR worst, as long as it is the sole operator, it is also facing inability for fast moving and innovative operations. Also the costs tend to rise, which has also been a cause a strong criticism towards the operator VR from the customer HSL.



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Main > Reference > Finland > Organizations > VR-Yhtyma
© Railroad Reference 2004 - 2011   -   Refurbished 22.6.2011 John McKey, Updated 2.9.2011