European Union deputies serving on the transport and tourism committee on Monday adopted a position on new rules setting conditions for the planning and allocation of railway infrastructure capacity in the Union, with the aim to allow for more optimal use of rail tracks and increase punctuality and reliability, according to an EP press release.

The committee’s position resonates especially in Greece, as last week marked the one-year anniversary of the Tempi rail collision (Feb. 28, 2023), which left 57 people dead, scores wounded and the country’s paltry, by European standards, rail sector in disarray.

Record-breaking 24-hour rainfall in early September 2023 subsequently caused massive flooding in the Thessaly plain, destroying a large part of the railway infrastructure on the main north-south rail axis in the country.

Back in Brussels, MEPs on Monday called for the greater use of rail as “a mostly electrified and energy-efficient mode of transport, is seen as a path to reducing transport-related emissions and energy consumption.”

The transport and tourism committee’s position on new EU rules for railway infrastructure capacity was adopted unanimously by 30 votes in favor. According to the press release, the position will now be put to a vote at an upcoming plenary session and will constitute the European Parliament’s position at first reading. The file will be followed up by the new Parliament after the European elections on June 6-9