EP03-01 (ASEA 01/1951), photographed on August 15, 2004, between Cracow and Wieliczka. Photo by Tomasz Mleczek (http://ssb.strefa.pl/mitor - thanks for permission!).
Another photo taken on the same occasion.
EP03-07, photographed at the Warszawa Zachodnia station in May 1962. Photo from my collection.
EP03-01 at the Kraków Płaszów depot; photo taken on
08/1951) under restoration at the Skierniewice
depot. Photo taken on
EP03-01 once again, this time photographed in Sucha Beskidzka on September 6, 2008. Photo by Ryszard Rusak (thanks for permission!).
On September 5, 2009, EP03-01 took part in ‘Parowozjada 2009’ in Chabówka. This picture has been taken at the railway stock heritage park…
…and this one at the Chabówka station.
Side drawing of the EP03 by Robert Kroma (SK vol. 1/1995).
One more picture of the EP03-01: Sucha Beskidzka, October 11, 1997. Photo by Marek Niemiec (from my collection).
Of ten electric locomotives supplied to PKP between 1936 and 1937 for service around the Warsaw railway junction (classes EL.100 and EL.200) two survived the war and only one was operational. Electrification was started immediately after the war and completed in early 1950s, but Polish industry was not yet able to build a complete electric locomotive. Pre-war EL.100 of British origin was still considered satisfactory and contacts with the Contractors Committee for the Electrification of Polish Railways were soon restored; in 1949 a contract was signed for delivery of electric equipment and traction motors for eight similar locomotives, to be assembled at the former Linke-Hofmann factory in Wrocław, now renamed Pafawag (today Bombardier Transportation Poland). First of these machines, classed EP02, was completed in August 1953. Pending their introduction, eight electric line locomotives were ordered from Swedish Allmanna Svenska Elektriska Aktiebolaget (ASEA). Preliminary negotiations started in 1946 and all locomotives were delivered between 1951 and 1952. They were first designated class E150 (from service numbers, E151 through E158), then E03 and finally, in 1958, EP03.
ASEA had had no experience with 3000 V DC electric locomotives, as Swedish railways had their network electrified with 15 kV 16 2/3 Hz. Swedish engineers were thus sent to English Electric and Metropolitan Vickers, where first machines for Poland had been built. New locomotives had thus much in common with EP01 and EP02; in particular, traction engines were similar, but continuous rating increased from 1360 to 1620 kW. EP03 was also marginally heavier, but overall characteristics and appearance were similar. It could haul a 500-tonne draft at 100 km/h and could also be used with light freight trains.
All eight machines were initially based in Warsaw. As electrification progressed, they were transferred in 1954 to Łódź Olechów depot. Their service with long-distance trains was not very long. Basically first electric locomotives in PKP service (classes EP01, EP02 and EP03) were all comparatively light machines, stemming from the same pre-war British design. With the appearance of more modern and more powerful classes EU04, EU05 and EU06 (the latter – again of British origin – was finally chosen for license production) they were shifted to local trains and remained in service until early 1970s. Two examples have been preserved. EP03-01 (s/n 01/1951) was initially intended for the Railway Museum in Warsaw, but ended up at the Odolany depot, to be finally transferred to Sucha Beskidzka. Formally re-entered on the company rosters after an overhaul in April 1997, EP03-01 is an operational heritage locomotive and sometimes can be seen in southern Poland with tourist trains. This machine is the oldest operational electric locomotive in Poland, although it has to be mentioned that several items of equipment are not original (taken from ET21 and EN57 EMU). EP03-08 (s/n 08/1951) is owned by the PSMK railway fan society and kept at the Skierniewice depot, but this machine is not operational and its overall condition is rather poor; currently it is under restoration.
Main technical data
1) Some sources give 110 km/h.
References and acknowledgments
- www.darkman.kolej.szczecin.pl (website by Dariusz Niemczyk – no longer active);
- www.kolej.pl/~jareks/ (website by Jarosław Stawarz aka Chester – no longer active);
- www.parowozy.pl/skansen/ (Chabówka railway stock heritage park website);
- Chris West (private communication);
- SK, various issues.