Tanzania has begun testing its first Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) electric train between Dar es Salaam and Morogoro.
Tanzania’s SGR reached a top speed of 160Km/h, while Kenya’s SGR utilizes diesel and can only reach 120Km/h.
Once operational, the new SGR train is projected to be able to move at a speed of 160 kilometers per hour, which is roughly the speed of a regular bus.
The SGR line runs for 300 kilometers between Dar-es-Salam City and Morogoro Station. Tanzania’s Chief Government Spokesperson published a brief video of the electric SGR during its maiden test on their official social media on Sunday.
The majority of Tanzanians have concerns about the efficiency of an electric train, given that Tanzania has frequent power outages.
Tanzania is constructing the new SGR to replace the somewhat outdated and inefficient meter-gauge railway infrastructure created during the colonial East African Railways.
In comparison to the previous Meter Gauge Railway, this planned Standard Gauge Railway with larger and harder rails accommodates bigger loads at higher speeds (MGR).
The government said in May that residents will have to wait longer to ride the electric train due to delays in the building of the Julius Nyerere Dam, which is planned to supply energy to power locomotive engines on the SGR.
The dam’s construction timetable has been reworked, and the completion date has been moved back to 2024, according to authorities. Overhead power lines will be added to railway tracks to deliver energy to trains and trucks. The project will be constructed in five sections, beginning with a 300-kilometer stretch from Dar es Salaam to Morogoro, which is currently complete.
Phase Two of the Railway Line extends 422 kilometers from Morogoro to Makutupora.
Another newly disclosed Phase Three plan calls for a 294-kilometer-long railway to connect Makutupora and Tabora Town. Following that, the country will commence the Fourth Phase, which would span 130 kilometers and connect Tabora to Isaka.
Isaka will be the branching point. In Phase Four, one arm will be extended to Mwanza, with an additional 249 kilometers to complete the in-country, Dar to Lake Zone SGR network.
Tanzania looks to have landed the region’s cheapest railway construction agreement, at $1.92 billion, considering that it would pay about half of what Kenya spent to complete the first segment from Mombasa to Nairobi.
Kenya’s line between Mombasa and Nairobi, which was somewhat longer by around 50 kilometers, cost $3.8 billion to build.