Norges Statsbaner

Norges Statsbaner

Infobox Company
company_name = Norges Statsbaner AS
company_type = State owned
foundation = 1854
location = Oslo, Norway
key_people = Einar Enger (CEO)
area_served = Norway
industry = Railway
products =
revenue = NOK 6,534 million (2005)
operating_income = profit NOK 589 million (2005)
net_income = profit NOK 328 million (2005)
num_employees = 10,646 (2006)
parent = Norwegian Ministry of Transport and Communications
subsid = Nettbuss, NSB Anbud
homepage =
footnotes =

Norges Statsbaner commonly know as NSB or the Norwegian State Railways is a Norwegian transport company. Owned by the Government of Norway, NSB is the largest passenger railway company and, through the subsidiary Nettbuss, bus company in Norway. Its former cargo division has been spun off in CargoNet while the track had been transferred to the government agency Jernbaneverket.


"Main article: Chronology of Norwegian railway lines."


The first Norwegian railway, Hovedbanen between Oslo and Eidsvoll, was opened on September 1 1854. This 68 km long railway terminated at the end of the Mjøsa lake and steam ship services were provided up the lake to Lillehammer. This first railway was constructed by British engineers, and the financing was divided between British investors and the Government of Norway. The total construction cost of this railway was 2 million Spesidaler, though the investment was highly profitable because of the large amount of lumber transported on the rail. This railway represented an enormous boost to the vital Norwegian lumber industry. Also along this and all later railways were constructed telegraph lines. [Pryser, Tore "Norsk Historie 1814–860", Det Norske Samlaget, Oslo, 1999 ISBN 82-521-5184-1 no icon]

The next railway to be constructed was also the first state railway. On June 23 1862 Hamar-Grundsetbanen was opened. It was followed by Kongsvingerbanen that opened on October 3 between Lillestrøm and Kongsvinger, thus making a connection to Sweden (that Norway at that point was in union with) possible. In the following years many other railways where constructed, including Randsfjordbanen (1868), Drammenbanen (1872), Rørosbanen (1877), Jærbanen (1878), Østfoldbanen (1879 and Indre Østfoldbanen in 1882) and both Vestfoldbanen and Meråkerbanen in 1882.


After World War II the expansion of the railway network practically stopped, with the sole exception of the work to get Nordlandsbanen to Bodø, a task first completed in 1962. In the 1952 the Norwegian authorities decided that 50% of the railway network length, compromising 80% of the traffic, was to be electrified at 15 kV AC and that the rest of the network was to be operated with diesel locomotives. The practical result was a continuous work to electrify the entire network south of Mjøsa, in addition to Dovrebanen. This line would be the last electrified, a job completed in 1970.

To operate the modernised network, NSB went to the acquisition of two new main locomotive types, the Di 3 for diesel operations and the El 11 for electrical operations, the Di 3s being delivered from 1957 and the El 11s from 1951. The diesel locomotives were supplemented with the shunters Di 2 while the El 11s were supplemented with an upgraded El 13 class.


After decades of planning and construction, the Oslo Tunnel opened in 1980. It allowed trains from the west of Oslo to run to the new Oslo Central Station (Oslo S) and in 1989 Oslo West Line Station was closed. The tunnel especially revolutionised the commuter train service around Oslo, allowing trains to operate on both sides of downtown Oslo.

1996 to present

On December 1 1996 the largest structural change in Norwegian railway history in the 20th century occurred. NSB was split in three separate governmental agencies. The ownership, maintenance and construction of the track was transformed to the newly created government agency Jernbaneverket while a new Norwegian Railway Inspectorate was created to supervise all railway operations in the country. NSB was renamed NSB BA and created as a limited company, wholly owned by the Norwegian Ministry of Transport and Communications. Also, NSB was made a corporation, with NSB Biltrafikk (now Nettbuss) and NSB Eiendom (now ROM Eiendomsutvikling) made subsidiaries of NSB.

In 1998 the new Oslo Airport, Gardermoen opened, replacing the old Oslo Airport, Fornebu that had been too small since the 1980s. Part of the political compromise to build the new airport was a twofold consequence for NSB. First of all it was decided that the new airport was to have an as environmentally friendly ground infrastructure as possible, resulting in the decision to build a high speed railway on the 56 km stretch from Oslo Central Station to the airport, which would only take 19 minutes. But at the same time it was a political demand that the new airport not cost the tax payers any money, and it was decided that the entire construction was to be financed with loans. The result was that the airport was to be financed, built and operated by the Airport Authority subsidiary Oslo Lufthavn AS while the rail connection was to be financed, built and operated by the NSB subsidiary NSB Gardermobanen. But problems arose during the construction of Gardermobanen because of a leak in the tunnel Romeriksporten, resulting in major budget overruns and a delay in the opening of the tunnel. Still, Norway's first high speed railway line opened on time on October 8, 1998 at the same time as the new airport, though Romeriksporten wasn't opened until October 22 1999, more than a year after its scheduled opening. The service is operated using 16 custom built BM71 electric multiple units, with a capacity for 168 passengers and maximum speed of 210 km/h. [ no icon Flytoget: About]

NSB tried to modernize itself in the late 1990s through the acquisition of new rolling stock and a new brand image. The first stock to be delivered ware 22 El 18 electric locomotives. These were to take over the passenger train traffic in Southern Norway while the El 16s and El 14s were moved to the freight division and the El 17s were scrapped, relegated to shunting or sold to Flåmsbana. The new locomotives were capable of speeds up to 200 km/h. For the diesel lines NSB attempted to buy 12 Di 6 from Siemens, but had to return them after they failed to operate sufficiently in the Northern Norwegian cold. NSB also decided to rebrand itself with three district brands: NSB Signatur (express trains), NSB Agenda (regional trains) and NSB Puls (local trains). At the same time NSB ordered new electric multiple units, first of all for the new Airport Express Train service, the BM71. This was followed up with 16 new Signatur trains of the type BM73 that were to be used on the express services on Bergensbanen, Dovrebanen and Sørlandsbanen and equipped with tilting technology. This was an attempt to create a high speed railway service using existing rail track, though the operating times between Oslo and the terminuses were only reduced by about an hour. These trains were painted blue and grey, and were the first non-red trains to be operated by NSB in decades. At the same time NSB announced the introduction of the Agenda concept, that was to replace the NSB InterCity Express services and the diesel services. While the BM70s were simply repainted, the diesel services on Nordlandsbanen, Raumabanen and Rørosbanen were upgrades with 15 new BM93 units in 2001, though criticized for lack of comfort, have increased the speed on the railways. NSB also discontinued night train services on Raumabanen and Rørosbanen. NSB also received, starting in 2002 36 new electrical local trains, BM72. These were painted grey/green (for the use of the brand name "Puls") and were put in service around Oslo and Stavanger. NSB has now discontinued the use of brand names on its rail products.

By 2002 the conservative-liberal government wanted to further deregulate the Norwegian railway sector, and made NSB a public limited company NSB AS on July 1. NSB had been through a process of making the company more of a corporation, with the IT section made the subsidiary Arrive and the maintenance transformed to Mantena. NSB also purchased part of the Swedish Tågkompaniet while the old freight train section NSB Gods was transformed to CargoNet. 45% of the subsidiary was then sold to the Statens Järnvägar successor Green Cargo. In 2004 the government also split NSB Gardermobanen in two, deleting the companies debt, transferring the track it owned to Jernbaneverket and the train operations to a new, government owned enterprise, Flytoget.


"See Norwegian railway network."

NSB operates with three main types of passenger rail transport: express trains, regional trains and local trains.

Express trains

The express train (Regiontog) services are offered on Bergensbanen, Dovrebanen and Sørlandsbanen. The four day trains are operated with BM73 electric multiple units (formerly branded as "Signatur") or with traditional locomotive pulled trains. A night train service is also offered on these lines. On Nordlandsbanen between Trondheim and Bodø NSB operates using regional BM93 trains, though with standard night trains each night.

These routes are operated:
* Oslo - Trondheim (Dovrebanen) (via: Lillestrøm, Oslo Airport Gardermoen, Hamar, Brumunddal, Moelv, Lillehammer, Hunderfossen, Ringebu, Vinstra, Kvam, Otta, Dovre, Dombås, Hjerkinn, Kongsvoll, Oppdal, Berkåk, Støren, Heimdal, Trondheim S)
* Oslo - Bergen
* Oslo - Kristiansand - Stavanger

Regional trains

NSB has two regional rail services, diesel services and ICE. All regional trains are to receive the new livery of red and grey. NSB has previously used the brand name "Agenda" on its regional services.

The services around Oslo are called "InterCity Express" or "ICE". The service uses BM70 and BM73b connecting Lillehammer, Halden and Skien to Oslo. The service is provided hourly along Hovedbanen, Vestfoldbanen and Østfoldbanen. The trains running between Lillehammer and Skien serve Oslo Airport, Gardermoen, providing an alternative to Flytoget. The services to Halden are extended to Gothenburg three times a day.

On the non-electrified railways Meråkerbanen, Nordlandsbanen, Raumabanen and Rørosbanen. NSB operates regional services using BM92 and BM93 diesel multiple units. NSB operates the following routes:
* Trondheim - Bodø (Nordlandsbanen)
* Trondheim - Östersund (Sweden) (Meråkerbanen)
* Trondheim - Røros (Rørosbanen)
* Trondheim - Oppdal (Dovrebanen)
* Røros - Hamar (Rørosbanen)
* Dombås - Åndalsnes (Raumabanen)

Local trains

Around the cities of Arendal, Bergen, Oslo, Skien, Stavanger and Trondheim NSB operates local train services using BM69 and BM72 electric multiple units and BM92 diesel multiple units. The services usually have hourly or semi-hourly frequency. NSB tried using the brand name "Puls" for the local trains, and have painted some of the trains green. The Puls brand has been discontinued.

Around Oslo the following services are provided: (with BM69 and BM72)
* Drammen - Asker - Oslo - Lillestrøm (Hovedbanen and Drammensbanen)
* Drammen - Skøyen - Oslo - Jessheim - Dal (Hovedbanen and Drammensbanen)
* Eidsvoll - Oslo - Drammen - Kongsberg (Hovedbanen and Sørlandsbanen)
* Skøyen - Årnes - Kongsvinger (Kongsvingerbanen)
* Skøyen - Oslo - Ski (Østfoldbanen)
* Spikkestad - Oslo - Moss (Spikkestadbanen and Østfoldbanen)
* Skøyen - Oslo - Mysen - (Rakkestad) (Østfoldbanen)

Other local train services:
* Stavanger - Egersund (Sørlandsbanen) with BM72
* Bergen - Voss - Myrdal (Bergensbanen) with BM69
* Lerkendal - Trondheim - Steinkjer (Nordlandsbanen) with diesel BM92, on what used to be called Trønderbanen
* Porsgrunn - Notodden (Bratsbergbanen) with Y1 class railcar
* Arendal - Nelaug (Arendalsbanen) with BM69


Services on Gjøvikbanen were in 2005 transferred to NSB Anbud after the NSB subsidiary had won a public tender bid for a ten-year public service obligation contract with the Norwegian Ministry of Transportation and Communication. The Norwegian Minister of Transportation and Communications, Liv Signe Navarsete (Sp), has announced that the present government (as of 2006) will discontinue the previous governments announcements to put more rail line operations on public tender.

Rolling stock

During the 1990s NSB modernised their rolling stock, expanding their fleet of multiple units and retiring many of the traditional locomotive-hauled trains. Most of the locomotives were sold to the freight company CargoNet AS, but the models El18 and Di4 remain to pull passenger trains. Some of the new trains were plagued with troubles, in particular a brand new BM73 derailed (fortunately at low speed) at Nelaug in 2000 because of an axle breaking due to metal fatigue. As of 2005 however, these trains have been performing satisfactorily.

In August 2008, NSB announced it had ordered 50 new five-unit trainsets of the Stadler FLIRT class. [cite web |last=Berglund |first=Nina |title= NSB invests in new trains |publisher=Aftenposten |url= |accessdate=2008-08-21] These will be used for local service in the Greater Oslo area (24 sets) and also regional service in southern Norway (26 sets). The delivery is scheduled for 2012, by that time much of the rail network is expected to be upgraded to double track, enabling an increase in frequency. [ [ Milliard-Flirt for NSB] ( , August 19, 2008; accessed August 20, 2008no icon] The contract which is worth approximately 840 mill. Swiss francs gives NSB an option to buy an additional 100 sets. [cite web |last=Solholm |first=Rolleiv |title= New trains for Norwegian Railways |publisher=The Norway Post |url= |accessdate=2008-08-21] These trainsets have been specifically modified to operate in Norwegian climate and have a maximum speed of 200 km/h.


*2 Di 2 class diesel shunters
*5 Di 4 class diesel locomotives, used mostly on Nordlandsbanen.
*9 El 17 class electric locomotives, three used for shunting and six run on Flåmsbana.
*22 El 18 class electric locomotives, used on all main electrified lines.

Electric multiple units

*80 BM69 class 2-car or 3-car commuter trains, used around Oslo, Bergen and Arendal.
*16 BM70 class 4-car intercity (medium distance) trains, used around Oslo.
*36 BM72 class 4-car commuter trains, used around Oslo and Stavanger.
*16 BM73 class 4-car long-distance trains, used on Bergensbanen, Dovrebanen and Sørlandsbanen.
*6 BM73b class 4-car intercity version of the BM73 used on Østfoldbanen.

Diesel multiple units

*14 BM92 class 2-car trains used for commuter services around Trondheim, and on Rørosbanen.
*15 BM93 class 2-car trains used on long distance and intercity services on Rørosbanen, Nordlandsbanen and Raumabanen. Also known as Bombardier Transportation Talent BR643 Diesel Multiple Unit.

Diesel railcar

*3 Y1 used on Bratsbergbanen between Skien and Notodden.


*The non-motorized passenger carriages in operation are the B3-series (the oldest), B5-series and B7-series. The B7-series remain in service on long distance express trains while the others are usually on medium-haul duty.


* Complete ownership of Arrive AS (IT services)
* Complete ownership of Mantena AS (Rolling stock maintenance)
* Complete ownership of Nettbuss AS (Bus operations)
* Complete ownership of NSB Anbud AS (Operates train services on Gjøvikbanen)
* Complete ownership of ROM Eiendom AS (Real estate development)
* Complete ownership of Tågkompaniet (Sweden)
* 55% of CargoNet AS, the other 45% is owned by Swedish owned Green Cargo (Freight train operation)
* 55% of Trafikkservice, the other 45% owned by Integrated Service Solutions (Cleaning services)

See also

*Rail transport in Norway

External links

* [ NSB Web Site]


* [ Jernbaneverket Historie] no icon
* [ Norsk Jernbanemuseum Historie] no icon
* [ Part V. The Brofos Catalog of the Railway Stamps of Norway] en icon

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