Is Zagreb Funicular Properly Maintained? Questions Raised

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The cabins are old, the viaduct must be repaired, and the cabins’ jerking motion should also be resolved – says a technical review report about the Zagreb funicular that was prepared last year and which was again cited by the Ministry of Transport during this year’s technical review of the Zagreb funicular, reports Večernji List on November 27, 2018.

At least, this is what the city assembly councillor Renato Petek from the Forward Croatia party claims. He has presented the transport ministry documents which show that the funicular is not in the best possible condition.

“By studying the inspection findings of the transport ministry in the last three years, I have encountered worrying information and items that discuss repeated failures and poor management by the ZET public transportation company,” Petek said, adding that the company had failed to follow any of the recommendations given by the ministry’s inspection teams. According to Petek, the recommendation about setting up an expert team to prepare everything needed for the complete reconstruction and modernization of the Zagreb funicular has been repeated in vain for years, even though this would ensure a more longterm safety for the passengers.

“There is also a problem of the control of the facilities and the engine room which can be accessed easily,” said the city councillor, pointing out that ZET representatives were excluded from a relevant committee of the Croatian Institute for Standardization last year. Petek also claims that the funicular has too few employees, who work during the Advent weeks for nine hours a day without any breaks.

The ZET transportation companies responded by saying that there are no problems. “Service on the funicular is done continuously, on a weekly, monthly, semi-annual and annual basis. This year’s major service was completed in April, and the company authorized by the competent ministry carried out a technical inspection and gave its opinion and recommendations according to which the ministry issued a decision to allow the funicular to operate until September 1, 2019,” said the ZET, adding that throughout the year “potential minor problems caused by the daily use or the impact of weather conditions” are regularly resolved.

However, the president of the ZET employee trade union Dražen Jović says that the truth is somewhat different. “The funicular will not break down since it still has the license. But it is true that it should be renovated. The stations are derelict, the concrete base is slightly moving because it is being ‘pressed’ by the hill,” said Jović discussing what he has heard from his colleagues, about ten of whom work at the funicular.

“They maintain it, drive it, clean snow and work there for nine hours a day without a break. We have already demanded that at least two more people should be employed there, but the company does not want to do it,” Jović said.

For more Zagreb news, click here.

Translated from Večernji List (reported by Mateja Šobak).


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