One hundred and seventy three years ago, Havana´s Railroad Company opened the 27.5 kilometers railway from the capital to Bejucal village; the first steam railroad in Latin America was inaugurated with this action.
Now a days, the railroad net of the country, having over 9 300 kilometers, requires an integral remodeling with the aim of making the most out of the geographical characteristics of the country for the transportation of cargo and passengers.
“We have a very difficult situation in the province regarding the railways due to the high state of deterioration they have, unattended for so many years first due to lack of resources and then the lack of labor force”, pointed out Jorge González, Director of the Railways and Bridges Basic Enterprise Unit in Cienfuegos.
In such sense, it was formed the Railway Contingent of the Young Labor Army (Spanish acronym EJT). These over 170 youngsters who will work in the 370 kilometers of railway in the territory make their way in the remodeling of the net, supporting the national program that intends to recover 2 500 kilometers of railways along the country.
“It is necessary to recover the functionality of the railways, since cargo transportation represents a fundamental aspect for our economy. We are currently working on the way through which all products from the Cement Plant circulate. We avoid accidents and support the workers of this sector”, stated Carlos González, soldier of the Contingent.
“We have the necessary labor force, although they need preparation since they are youngsters who lack experience in these labors, but we are convinced we can overcome this problem”, adds Jorge González.
This revitalization is a priority in a province that holds a sustained harbor activity and intends the enlargement of the petro- chemical pole.
“Now we are beginning to clear the stripe of the railway and it takes a lot of work, especially because it must be done under sun exposure. We have to cut the grass and bushes along the 5 meter wide stripe. Within the railway, we must use axe picks to remove the grass. It is hard work but we are making it possible, which is the most important thing”, explained soldier Luis Ángel González.
Fitting the celebration of the Railroad worker Day next January 29th, the routes Cienfuegos-Santa Clara, Guabairo branch line and the South Line zone from Aguada de Pasajeros municipality to Cherepa village must be concluded.
Improving the infra- structure of the railroad net will contribute to increasing the trains average speed. In a second stage, it will be prioritized the railway alignment´, change of parts, fixation of rails and bolts and the pouring of stone in considerable extensions.