Operail transports goods on Estonian railways. We have long-term experience with transportation of various groups of goods. We transport chemicals, fertilizers, petroleum products, oil shale, timber products, cereal grain, heavy and oversized equipment, bulk, palm oil, raw sugar, etc.
We service Estonian import, export, and domestic trade, as well as transit trade between Asia and Europe and Northern and Southern Europe. From 1 January 2023, Operail does not transport goods from Russia and Belarus, but we continue to transport goods from other countries through Russia or Belarus.
Our customers are Estonian companies – mainly logistics and production companies and owners of volumetric goods. In cooperation with our partners, we offer our customers individual solutions, which include everything from freight route planning to delivery of the goods to the customer’s door.
Rail transport is a specific field of activity with high safety requirements, which means that many different regulations must be taken into account: international and domestic agreements, transport regulations, instructions for calculating freight payments, etc. Documentation related to freight transport is available HERE.
For large freight volumes (1,000 tonnes or more per month), we provide the service on the basis of a project-based quotation contract. We will look at each customer project individually and offer the best possible individual solution. For smaller volumes, we recommend booking space on the weekly regular trains or through a forwarding agent.
We offer a new option for customers with small volumes of goods that do not require an entire train to be loaded or do not involve a freight project – to transport their goods in weekly scheduled trains. You can book a single wagon or more wagons (subject to availability).
Our regular freight trains carry goods on two routes in each direction: between South Estonia and Harju County, and between East Estonia and Harju County.
Select the direction in which you wish to transport your goods and see from the table on which day of the week there will be a stop for loading or unloading wagons at the desired station. If, for any reason, the day of the week is not suitable, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org – we will do our best to find a solution for you!
* The days of the week run consecutively in the given schedule, i.e. goods picked up from Harjumaa on Friday and Saturday will not arrive in Southern Estonia until the following Sunday
Since 2018, we offer our customers in Estonia a door-to-door freight solution – a domestic multimodal container train service. In addition to rail transport, we also organise the road transport of the goods to and from the railway, as well as the transshipment of cargo containers from wagons to cars and from cars to wagons.
The service allows companies that do not have a railway branch to use rail transport without having to worry about coordinating different modes of transport.
The goal of our multimodal project is for goods to be transported in Estonia as much as possible by rail and as little as possible by road. Rail transport is more environmentally friendly and safer because one container train with one driver transports 54 truckloads of goods. This makes the road cleaner and safer for other road users as well.
Multimodal transport volumes have increased every year since the beginning of the project. In 2022, we fulfilled the goal we set for ourselves and removed 20,000 truckloads of cargo containers from the roads!
We currently offer the multimodal container train service on the lines Muuga–Tartu–Muuga, Muuga–Sillamäe–Muuga, and Tartu–Sillamäe–Tartu.
Dangerous goods are transported by rail only in accordance with the requirements of the Chemicals Act and under the supervision of a safety adviser. We also comply with the RID (Regulations Concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Rail) annex to the COTIF convention on international rail transport and the SMGS agreement on international rail freight transport (Annex 2). These documents are available HERE.
For the transport of oversized goods, we will develop a loading scheme suitable for the goods. We have long-term experience with all types of heavy equipment transport: tractors, bulldozers, cranes, trucks, tracked vehicles, factory equipment, building and manufacturing structures, etc.
We offer rail transport in Estonia for goods which start and/or finish their railway journey in a station located in Estonia. The suitable station can be selected from the list of Estonian stations open for commercial operations.
The technical management procedures of Estonian Railways regulate the work of the stations in general. Separate agreements are made to serve each branch.
Base and intermediate stations open for commercial operations:
In the years 2020–2022, we also transported goods in Finland. At the beginning of 2023, Operail sold its Finnish freight transport subsidiary, Operail Finland, to Nurminen Logistics, a logistics company listed on the Finnish stock exchange. For questions related to Operail Finland and Finnish transport, please contact the representatives of Nurminen Logistics.
From 2012 to 2021, Operail rented rolling stock as a separate business line. In 2022, we began to sell the assets of the rental business, and from 2023, Operail no longer operates as a rental business.
However, we do provide freight rolling stock for hire in small amounts when we do not need it ourselves at that time. We offer locomotives for hire both separately and with a locomotive crew. We also rent wagons.
If you are interested in renting, please contact our sales managers, who will help you to find a suitable solution: email@example.com!
We check, maintain and repair all common wagons and locomotives. We are skilled in our work, know the requirements related to the repair of railway vehicles, and offer high-quality services.
We carry out repairs of wagons and locomotives mainly at the Tapa depot which, with its more than 135-year history, is one of the oldest companies engaged in the repair and maintenance of rolling stock on the entire 1,520 mm gauge railway.
We can maintain and repair all the most common types of freight wagons. We mostly repair C30-M, PH, C36, TEM-TMH, and CME3 type locomotives but, if necessary, we are able to service our customers with other types of locomotives as well. We have a suitably qualified team to provide locomotive maintenance at the location of the customer – both in Estonia and abroad.
In May 2016, we opened a new paint and wash workshop at the Tapa depot, where in addition to rolling stock, all kinds of other metal parts, objects, equipment and vehicles can be painted.
The Tapa depot of Operail complies with the ISO 9001:2015 quality management system standard. In addition to ISO 90001:2015, we are certified as a Europa ECM unit. We also have certifications No. 794 and 998, ISO 3834-2:2021, EN 15085-2, and ISO/IEC 17025:2017.
We offer the following repair services:
In 2017, we restored the locomotive building tradition in Estonia after 80 years – the first C30-M type universal locomotive was completed at the Tapa depot. The locomotive is designed for shunting work and local line services. The locomotive has a durable American frame, a reliable chassis with good driving features, and modules designed and assembled by our partner CZ Loko. Locomotive engine type: Caterpillar 3512C HD with a power output of 1,550kW, axle load: 23 t, maximum speed: 100 km/h.
To date, 12 such locomotives have been completed at the Tapa depot, three of which have been adapted and registered for use on the Finnish railways and bear the updated model name C30-MF.
Ten locomotives were named after historically important Tapa station masters: Adam (Adam Zmijevski), Karl (Karl Glaudan), Rudolf (Rudolf Bernhard Blauhut), Jakob (Jakob Roplik), Otto (Villu-Otto Vane), Leo (Leo Pärg), Märt (Märt Külvik), Oskar (Oskar Kriisk), Ants (Ants Kurvits) and August (Arnold August Peri). The eleventh locomotive is named Paul after Paul Lukka, former member of the management board of Operail, who played an important role in the operation of Operail in Finland. The twelfth locomotive was named Ilkka after the CEO of Operail Finland in honour of Operail’s time operating in Finland.
You can find additional information about the C30-M locomotive HERE.
In 2021, the first LNG freight locomotive in the region was built at Operail’s Tapa depot. In the past, gas technology has only been tested and used on locomotives performing shunting work.
During the modification of the American General Electric C36 type locomotive into an LNG freight locomotive, LNG tanks were added to the diesel fuel tank, which means that the locomotive can use both diesel fuel and LNG.
The LNG locomotive is environmentally friendly: it emits 20% less carbon dioxide and 70% less sulphur dioxide than a diesel one.
The LNG locomotive project has been completed. We are proud of our work: we gained valuable experience in how to build something completely new. For economic reasons, we do not use the locomotive for the provision of our services.