The actual speed of freight cars in the rail network of the Ukrainian Railways joint-stock company (Ukrzaliznytsia) decreased in December because of a series of massive Russian attacks and delays of passenger trains. As a result, Ukrzaliznytsia has lowered the estimated average speeds of freight cars in the rail network for January 2023.

Valerii Tkachov, the deputy director of Ukrzaliznytsia’s department of commercial operations, announced this during a meeting with grain-market participants on 29 December, the CFTS portal reports, citing the Rail Insider publication.

"There were attacks on the Ukrainian energy system on 5, 17, and 20 December. Traffic stopped for 2–5 days before gradually resuming. Currently, we all have power outages throughout the country. Passenger transportation was prioritized when resuming traffic and when providing diesel traction," Tkachov said, adding that a process of limiting electricity consumption is taking place in the energy system in general and Ukrzaliznytsia’s rail network in particular.

"At certain railway stretches, power engineers are limiting the number of locomotives per stretch. The number of trains at certain railway stretches is also being limited. Therefore, these negative factors affected the speed of trains in December," he said.

According to him, the delays of freight cars in the port of Izmail and at Ukraine’s western border crossings also had a negative impact.

As reported, Russia conducted the latest massive attacks on Ukraine on 29 December, which particularly affected the movement of Ukrzaliznytsia’s passenger trains.