Cf. Allocation regulations Ch. 7 and EU Dir. 2001/14/EC - Annex 1.3.
Capacity (actual “infrastructure capacity”) is the most important service provided by NNRA to its customers. This chapter describes the way customers should proceed to request capacity – and the way in which NNRA supplies it.
General Description of Process (format, requirements)
Tactical capacity allocation / timetabling, which is related to the main timetable change. The main timetable period is an annual period.
Operative capacity allocation / timetabling, which is related to the valid timetable at any given time. Ad-hoc route requests are handled in this process, cf. Ch. 4.3.2.
In addition, deviations may occur, which require modifications in train paths.
Tactical and operative capacity allocation are described above.
The capacity allocation is carried out in accordance with guidelines specified in laws, regulations and the Network Statement (NS) in addition to guidelines laid down during the Capacity Allocation process.
The Capacity Allocation process describes in logical sequence the partial processes, or phases, which are involved from the start of the process up to the implementation of timetable changes.
The Capacity Allocation process is divided into four phases:
A detailed description of the process with milestones (dates and deadlines) will be presented to the railway undertaking (RU) and infrastructure manager (IM) at the start of the planning process.
The participants in tactical capacity allocation are:
NNRA, (Traffic- and Market Division, Timetabling ) is responsible for the tactical capacity allocation processes.
Activities in the preliminary phase
|1.1||The point of time for the timetable change is decided by RNE (RailNetEurope)|
|1.2||NNRA (the Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling) prepares an announcement that is sent to the RU and IM. This announcement gives notice of the start of the process. Among other things, it includes a detailed description of the process with milestones (dates and deadlines).|
|1.3||NNRA implements and/or looks after amendments in laws and regulations that have an impact on the capacity allocation – the timetabling||The railway legislation|
|1.3b||NNRA checks the content of the framework agreements||Allocation regulations Ch. 6|
|1.4||Update Network Statement with the changes that will have an impact on the planning process. These include changes in the performance of the infrastructure of a permanent or temporary nature in accordance with a separate description plus any modifications that may occur at the service level (diesel refuelling, facilities for pre-heating trains, etc.)|
|1.5||NNRA considers new train path models. “The model of pre-planned train paths” 1) is used as a starting point in this procedure. Changes in the model of pre-planned train paths are made as needed, e.g. in response to major modifications in infrastructure|
|2.1||The IM at NNRA develops technical planning requirements for track and sends these suggestions to the Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling||22.214.171.124.1|
|2.2||The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling considers proposals for technical planning requirements for track and sends them to the RUs|
|2.3||The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling develop possible pre-planned train paths that may be needed and presents the results to the RU|
|2.4||The RUs internal ordering process: The RU evaluates the need for train paths||126.96.36.199.2|
|2.5||The initial meeting between the RUs and the IM at NNRA. Review of technical planning requirements for track and any other relevant questions that may arise|
|2.6||The RUs send a route request to the Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling.||Cf. Allocation Regulations, Ch. 2 and Network Statement Ch. 188.8.131.52.2|
|2.7||The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling compares the conditions for track with the route requests.|
All changes in the performance of the infrastructure shall be reported in compliance with the deadlines that have been specified in the Capacity Allocation process. Any needs for modifications that may arise after the timetable has been established or implemented shall be reported and the RUs notified according to Ch. 1.6.2.
A reporting of technical planning requirements for track shall include:
Measures and/or activities that may have a permanent or temporary impact on the capacity may include:
Route requests shall be made in compliance with deadlines set in the Capacity Allocation process. Any need for modifications that may arise after the timetable has been established or implemented shall be reported according to Ch. 4.3.2.
Route requests shall be made electronically or per mail.
For international coordination of route requests, cs. Pgf 1.9.2
Contacts: Use the e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Content of the Route Requests:
The RUs’ requests must take the form of a complete proposal for a route. If the RU wants the NNRA to verify or design the timetable, the route request must contain the minimum information required for the timetable design work.
Such minimum information is:
For freight trains, the gross hauled tonnage and length in meters are specified.
Any need for an assisting locomotive or auxiliary locomotive and on which routes.
The needs for terminal capacity, including
Need for track capacity
for parked rolling stock during operational pauses. Statement on preferred localization (as well as need for track length) is needed.
Need for access to train heating system (heating post) in connection with parking of trains
Request for preferred location and duration is desired. If the request applies to locations without train heating system, this must be mentioned.
When using special rolling stock (demonstration rolling stock, steam locomotives, etc.) the rolling stock’s performance on gradients must also be specified.
Any need for “technical pauses” underway (for greasing, inspection, water filling, etc.) should be stated and the desired duration of the pause should be specified. Statement on the maximum length (measured in kilometres) between the “technical pauses” is also needed.
New trains that it is desirable to run or trains that shall be discontinued should be specially indicated.
If a new locomotive unit or new rolling stock shall be introduced on a route, and this unit’s or rolling stock’s performance or capacity is a necessary condition for running this kind of route, the necessary rolling stock acceptance certificate shall be obtained no later than the time when the route is requested.
In the cases where new rolling stock is intended to replace other rolling stock on existing routes, it is recommended that the RU request routes that can be run with both existing and new rolling stock.
The reason for this provision is that the train’s operating characteristics can have a very large impact on the national rail network, which mainly consists of single tracks – and which has many steep gradients.
NNRA’s first draft (provisional reply) for the timetable period must contain:
Certain changes can be made after the first draft as a result of responses after the review.
RailNetEurope (RNE) – sets the dates for the timetable change. www.railneteurope.com
NNRA – in its respective capacity as capacity allocation authority, and IM. Cf. Ch. 1.8.2.
One Stop Shop, who assists the RUs in requesting international train paths.
The RUs – as participants in “the initial meeting”, cf. Ch. 4.2.1 – the description of activities in “the ordering phase”.
The NRA is the appeals authority for the NNRA's capacity allocation process. Concerning contact information see Annex 1.3.
Schematic overview of processes and important deadlines for applications for access and infrastructure planning.
Specified date format below: ”dd.mm”. A description of the activities' deadlines are given in section 4.3.
|From||Until||Process / Activity|
|14.12||Timetable R15 change|
|12.01||Preplanned Train paths for international freight consignments announced|
|12.01||13.04||Application for train paths. Final deadline|
|06.07||Train path proposals announced|
|06.07||10.08||Proposals reviewed by the RU|
|21.08||Train path meeting|
|26.08||09.09||Dispute resolution period|
|25.09||Timetable R16 set|
|13.10||First day for applications for ad-hoc routes R16|
|13.12||Timetable R16 implemented|
Main timetable change for national and international traffic – December 2015
The timetable R16 is valid from 13.12.2015 to 10.12.2016.
Capacity shall be distributed for the entire timetable period (R16), and route requests shall therefore cover the entire period from 13.12.2015 up to and including 10.12.2016.
The NNRA will give its final decision on the RUs' train path applications in the ordinary Capacity Allocation process for R16 by 25 September 2015.
For national traffic:
A detailed description of the planning process including deadlines is issued by separate mail to the RUs.
For international traffic:
See the description of the planning process at www.railneteurope.com/cont/timetable.aspx
Cf. Allocation Regulations §7-11, Annex 1.3.
Allocation of residual capacity 2)
Residual capacity can be allocated either for running extra trains or for infrastructure work.
Criteria for Setting Priorities for Operative Capacity Allocation 3)
The residual capacity is allocated in the order that applications and/or requests for extra train paths or track access for infrastructure work come in.
Contacts for Requesting Residual Capacity (extra train paths) and for Cancelling Trains
Outside of the Capacity Allocation process, communication shall normally take place between the Division for Traffic Management’s traffic control offices (Short-term Planning Office and centralized operations control) and the RUs’ transport management.
All circumstances that depart from the established timetable shall be discussed, e.g. a change in planning requirements concerning rolling stock, speed limit, cancellation of trains, adjusting existing train paths, running extra trains, extra train stops, etc.
Changes of a permanent or long-term nature shall be handled by the Traffic- and Market Division, Timetabling.
Applications for ad-hoc capacity must be made via NNRA’s web portal BEST. Here there are instructions for how the tool can be used and the minimum information that is required in the application. The applicant must be authorised to be able to order.
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 7-11, Annex 1.3.
“NNRA shall respond to ad-hoc applications for individual train paths as soon as possible and within five working days at the latest.”
For large and/or complicated requests and/or exceptional transports, special deadlines are contracted. The RUs are advised to submit a forecast of the request well in advance, even if all of the details are not yet in place. A received forecast gives the same priority with regard to allocation of residual capacity as a route request.
A forecast of a route request should include the following information:
Contacts - cf. Ch. 4.3.2 above.
NNRA’s reply to ad-hoc applications for train paths and/or forecast of a route request shall be sent to the applicant and include a reference to the RUs’ request or forecast.
If the application/forecast can be fully complied with, it is sufficient to state this.
If the application/forecast either cannot be complied with or cannot be fully complied with, NNRA shall also provide information in its reply about an alternative time and train path.
NNRA’s reply may be sent in BEST or by e-mail.
In addition to responding to an RU, NNRA will - when an application is received – announce the train path(s) as described in the Train Operation Regulations/Operational Rules for NNRA’s Network.
Main Activities for Ad-hoc Requests
|1.||The Short-term Planning Office receives a request in BEST from the RU’s transport management|
|2.||The Short-term Planning Office coordinates the request with other activities or needs|
|3.||Any priority needs that may exist are clarified with the RUs and district permanent way superintendents involved|
|4.||The Short-term Planning Office prepares and distributes the necessary announcements|
Cf. Allocation Regulations Ch. 7 - Annex 1.3.
NNRA treats the allocation and co-ordination processes as one continuous, integrated process. This process is called the Timetable Design Phase.
The Activities in the Timetable Design Phase
|1||NNRA (the Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling) prepares a draft of the timetable. Allocates capacity to the track, stations and terminals and/or marshalling yards|
|2||When a need arises, The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling at NNRA conducts minor adjustments in the timetable on the basis of modifications in the IM’s track access needs|
|3||NNRA submits the first draft of the new timetable to the RUs|
|4||Manage the timetable conference with the RU’s and IM|
|5||The RU’s and NNRA’s regions (IM) undertake a final evaluation and submit their requests and/or comments to The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling at NNRA|
|6||The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling at NNRA reviews the staffing requirements of the stations (applies to some stations on lines with centralized traffic control and stations on lines without centralized traffic control|
|7||Immediately after step 3 and simultaneously with steps 4-6 NNRA’s dispute resolution scheme comes into force||Cf. Allocation regulations, section 7-8 and Network Statement Ch. 4.4.2|
|8||Set the timetable:|| The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling at NNRA prepares the final timetable requirements (working timetable, route diagram and station working list)
Cf. Allocation Regulations, Ch. 2
The Activities in the Implementation Phase
|1||The Section for Capacity Allocation and Timetabling at NNRA conducts a safety and quality check of the timetable in accordance with a separate report form||Safety Management Regulations
Railway Net Infrastructure Regulations
|2||Preparation of working timetables, route diagrams and station working lists As regards duplication - cf. Ch. 184.108.40.206||The Operation Regulations|
|3||Updating of NNRA’s own information and traffic control systems|
|4||Distribution of information from the timetable database to agreed interfaces of external receivers (RUs, etc.)|
|5||Distribution of the above-mentioned documents (working timetables, route diagrams and station working lists, etc.)||The Operation Regulations|
|6||Publish the route diagrams on the web site of NNRA|
The process is sanctioned by the Allocation Regulations, cf. Annex 1.3.
The objective of the coordination is to create a timetable that has no conflicts of interests such that all applications can be approved. If it is not possible to approve all applications, IM shall coordinate the applications, cf. Section 7-7.
The process is implemented in the following manner:
NNRA first contracts applicants with mutual interests to, among other things, clarify and document the content of the applications and their actual requirements for the train paths that have been applied for.
NNRA will then summon the applicants to individual meetings. When all information and documentation is in place, NNRA will prepare a proposed solution in accordance with the prioritised criteria:
The proposal is sent to the involved applicants. If NNRA’s proposed coordination is not agreed to by the parties, NNRA is obligated to declare the route to be overloaded, cf. Section 7-9 and thereafter allocate the infrastructure capacity in accordance with prioritisation criteria, cf. Section 7-10.
Cf. Allocation Regulations and EU Dir. 2001/14/EC. Article 21 (6). Annex 1.3
NNRA’s dispute resolution scheme comes in force in response to written complaints from applicants who disagree with proposals for timetables after coordination has been carried out.
Process with milestones (dates and deadlines) is reported to the RU and IM at the start of the planning process, i.e. 11 months before the main timetable change.
When one line is declared to be overloaded, NNRA will allocate the infrastructure capacity in accordance with the guidelines and in the prioritised order as specified in Section 7-10, paragraph two of the Allocation Regulation.
NNRA will allocate the infrastructure capacity in such a way that it safeguards, to the greatest possible extent, the importance of the transport to society.
If conflicts arise that are not addressed by the above-mentioned guidelines or if there is different prioritising to what is specified in Section 7-10, paragraph two, the higher combined use of the total infrastructure capacity, NNRA will use method of economic model for valuing assigning routes, described in Annex 4.4.2. The assigning routes that generate the greatest (positive) net benefit (the economically most profitable allocation) will be given priority.
Complaints must be submitted as soon as possible after NNRA has sent out the first draft of a new timetable to the RUs, cf. Ch. 4.4, section 3.3.
Complaints that are submitted later than 15 working days prior to the date that NNRA has specified for setting a timetable, cf. Ch. 4.4, section 3.7, will not be considered.
The exact deadlines will be stated in a detailed progress plan to be announced 11 months before traffic starts running.
The complaint ought to include the following elements:
A reference to which trains and/or which operating schedule the complaint applies (sufficient to identify the complaint with a time and stretch)
A description of which solution the applicant thinks the dispute resolution process ought to conclude;
The complaint should be submitted to NNRA, Traffic- and Market Division, Timetabling Section, which distributes copies of complaints to other RUs. E-mail address: email@example.com can be used.
Within two working days after having received a copy of the complaint, applicants whose allocated train paths will be modified if the applicant’s complaint is accepted must have submitted any response they may have to the first applicant’s complaint to: NNRA, Traffic and Marketing Division, Timetabling Section.
The response must refer to (identify) the original complaint, cf. Ch. 220.127.116.11. E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org can be used.
NNRA evaluates complaints and any replies that are received and makes its decision on the basis of guidelines specified in acts, regulations and the NS in addition to the substance of the complaint and replies.
NNRA’s decision shall be in writing, and it shall be justified. The decision is communicated to the complainant and the other applicants who have been involved in the process within 10 working days after the complaint has been received, in accordance with section 18.104.22.168.
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 9-4, Annex 1.3. NNRAs decision can be appealed to the NRA, cf. Annex 1.3. Such an appeal does not have suspensive effect.
Cf. Allocation Regulations §§ 7-9, 7-10 (7-13 and 7-14) and EU Dir. 2001/14/EC. Article 22 (4-6), Annex 1.3
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 7-9 - Annex 1.3.
The following lines and nodes are considered to be congested:
The summary below is sanctioned by Section 7-10 of the Allocation Regulations, Annex 1.3:
“NNRA can depart from the sequence of priorities above if the departure will result in a higher total utilization of the total infrastructure capacity.”
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 7-9, sub-section 1, paragraph 2 + subsection 2.
Cf. Allocation Regulations Ch. 6 and Network Statement Ch. 2.3.1. incl. EU Dir. 2001/14/EC. Article 17, Annex 1.3
(Reference: JBV-case 03-1458 doc 4).
In the year 2000, NNRA signed a contract with Flytoget AS for the stretch between Etterstad and Gardermoen, which gives the latter party “the necessary priority so that it can have regular departures up to 6 times an hour in each direction. Regular means that the departures shall be distributed evenly throughout the hour.”
This contract was revised in 2003 and will expire on 1 January 2030.
As Etterstad is not a station, but only a point on the stretch of track, the contract has equivalent effect on the stretch from Oslo-S to Etterstad.
Allocation of capacity for infrastructure work shall principally occur as described in Ch. 4.2.1
Allocation of residual capacity for infrastructure work outside of the capacity allocation process occurs as described in Ch. 4.3.2
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 8-3 and EU Dir. 2001/14/EC. Article 27 (2), Annex 1.3.
An RU that applies again in the capacity distribution process for infrastructure capacity, which, due to reasons for which NNRA cannot be blamed, has utilized less than 80 %, surrenders priority to other RUs that are applying for the same train path.
If, during the course of a one-month period (31 calendar days), an RU does not use its assigned infrastructure capacity, the Norwegian National Rail Authority can withdraw the unused capacity at 5 – five working days’ notice in writing.
See definition in Chapter 1.10.
The RU is obliged to state whether the transport that it wants to run has a load of such a nature that they must be run as an exceptional transport, either in an ordinary train or as an extra train.
Deadlines for Applications for Exceptional Transports
When possible, exceptional transports shall be reported to the Capacity Allocation process if, due to the load’s size or other circumstances, they can have impacts on the infrastructure capacity on the relevant stretch.
Permissions to perform exceptional transports are obtained by contacting Norwegian National Rail Administration, OneStopShop function; email@example.com.
When requesting outside of the Capacity Allocation process, an administrative processing time longer than 5 days must be expected, even if the request only applies to single train paths, cf. Ch. 22.214.171.124 above.
Auxiliary Tools for Processing Applications for Exceptional Transports. (Additional Service) Cf. Ch. 126.96.36.199.
Dangerous Goods in Connection with the Capacity Allocation process
In the Capacity Allocation process, NNRA assumes that all freight trains carry dangerous goods.
Dangerous Goods When the Train Runs
The RUs impose responsibility to inform NNRA regarding all transport of dangerous goods according to guidelines in Traffic Rules for the NNRA’s Network Ch. 4.
Cf. Regulation 913/2010 Article 17 point 2
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 9-2. Cf. § 8-3, subsection 2 and EU Dir. 2001/14/EC., Article 29 - Annex 1.3.
In case of disturbances, it is in the common interest of NNRA and the RUs to restore the intended train traffic, punctuality and regularity as quickly as possible. Possible measures for achieving this are giving priority to certain trains, cancellation of trains and rerouting of trains.
Good punctuality and regularity are important requirements for NNRA’s and the RUs’ reputation and financial situation and are a crucial requirement for optimal capacity utilization.
A crucial requirement for good punctuality is that agreed planning requirements be met, cf. section 188.8.131.52.1 above. This is particularly important in the Eastern Norway region and in the vicinity of Bergen, Stavanger and Trondheim, where the train traffic is heavy and the utilization of the capacity in the network is high. This shall be taken into consideration in the short-term route planning.
A critical delay in a capacity context will vary with the different sections and depend on a number of factors such as distances between passing tracks, the length of passing tracks, the type of safety installation, etc. plus capacity utilization and technical requirements for routes.
Of the above-mentioned causes related to technical requirements for routes, critical delays in the Oslo area are defined as delays that exceed 3 minutes.
The purpose of priority rules is to provide guidelines that give uniform responses and hence predictability in the handling of irregularities.
However, based on experience and a comprehensive evaluation, a traffic controller shall make sure that the traffic is normalized as quickly as possible (general reduction in irregularities).
When necessary, the traffic controller shall ensure co-ordination and corresponding priorities with other affected central control areas. This is particularly important for trains that are run in transit through the Oslo area.
Responsible in traffic areas shall, in collaboration with relevant RUs, draw up action cards to the extent necessary to ensure major traffic irregularities are handled in a uniform way.
Detailed prioritisation rules are determined simultaneously with the individual schedule.
The following guidelines have been given for use by NNRA’s operational centralized operations control for restoring intended train traffic as quickly as possible in the event of disturbance.
As a basis the following applies; the trains which are on schedule shall be kept on schedule.
Regarding the rotation of the rolling stock among different trains and the impact of this rotation on meeting the timetable entail that this principle must sometimes be abandoned.
The further guidelines for exceptions are related to the timetable that is valid at any given time and is issued by NNRA just before each new timetable period. The RUs will be informed of the planned formulation of these guidelines during their participation in the Capacity Allocation process.
A traffic controller can depart from operational guidelines when this is deemed to be justified. Examples of such situations may be the following:
Cf. Allocation Regulations § 9-2 - Annex 1.3.
”If disturbances arise in the train traffic because of technical failures or accidents, the IM shall take all of the necessary measures to restore to normal situation.
In emergency situations or if it is absolutely necessary because of a shutdown, NNRA can demand that the entity that has been allocated infrastructure capacity make available the resources that the IM deems most suitable for normalizing the situation as soon as possible.”
When the right of requisition is invoked, the net operating costs will only be approved if the RU that is the object of the requisition or some other party for which the RU in question is liable is not responsible for the cause of the error that has given rise to the requisition.
The costs of invoking NNRA’s right of requisition will be charged to the entity that causes the disturbance in the train traffic.
Foreseen problems in the form of reduced infrastructure capacity shall be resolved on the basis of the same priority criteria as in the case of capacity failure on congested infrastructure 4), but in such a way that service trains that are run for the purpose of helping to restore the limited infrastructure capacity are given priority over these other trains.
NNRA and the involved RUs can jointly agree to a different solution.
When infrastructure capacity is limited, the same priority criteria apply as when the infrastructure has been declared to be congested 5), but in such way that service trains that are run for the purpose of helping to restore the limited infrastructure capacity are given priority over these other trains.
For routes and deviation situations for which NNRA has drawn up standard procedures (so called action cards), these will be followed unless all of the parties involved can jointly agree to a different solution.
By “limited infrastructure capacity”, we mean that it is not possible to run the train traffic intended for the line in question. E.g. because the centralized traffic control on the line is not working, point switches cannot be used, only one track is usable on a double track line, etc.