In Focus

Heavy haulage job lasting for months

Reinforced concrete as far as the eye can see: DB Schenker is currently transporting 1,400 segments for a new urban railroad line in Frankfurt – it is part of a major construction project lasting several months. Shown in the portrait is the team that was busy working at the freight terminal, with project manager Stefan Kümpel right in the center. Photos: Michael Neuhaus

DB Schenker is currently dealing with a gigantic order in the German city of Frankfurt, lending vital support in the construction of a new urban railroad line in the process. Part of the new line will proceed in two tunnels of 850 meters each, and it is for these tunnels that DB Schenker is delivering segment rings made of reinforced concrete to the construction site by truck. In total, the logistics service provider will be transporting 1,400 of these rings – each made up of six elements and weighing 27 tons.


“The segments are being transported from the manufacturer in northern Germany to a freight terminal at Frankfurt Airport on a freight train,” says project manager Stefan Kümpel from DB Schenker’s Special Transports team. Over a period of several months, there will be a total of 47 trains, each carrying 180 segment elements – in stacks of three, and with a combined weight of over 800 tons. The transfer of the freight from the train to the trucks is handled by DB SCHENKERjetcargo employees using heavy-duty forklift trucks.


“One train is the equivalent of 30 truckloads,” explains Stefan Kümpel. Two DB Schenker trucks are conducting a continuous shuttle operation on the 16-kilometer route between the freight terminal and the construction site. The first train arrived at the end of October, and it will be several months before the last one will have arrived in Frankfurt.


“We do handle a large number of jobs,” says heavy-haulage specialist Kümpel. “But we’ve never spported a major tunnel construction project like this one before.” The new urban railroad line covering a distance of 2.7 kilometers, part of which will be above ground, will link a newly developed urban district to Frankfurt’s inner city.