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57-year-old train goes on its final ride in Latvia

The legendary ER2M-605 train, which has carried passengers for 57 years, has now made its final journey before the “Passenger Trains” (PV) deservedly retires it, Latvian Television reported September 25.

The train was built in 1966 and over 57 years has covered more than 7 million kilometers. That's about 176 times around the globe.

Sigita Zviedre, head of communications and marketing at JSC “Passenger Trains,” said the last repair work for the train had been done in 2015.

“There has also been an upgrade even before that, with both rows of benches and lighting being built, as well as doors [replaced],” Zviedre told LTV.

On Monday, there was no shortage of enthusiasts coming to say goodbye.

“The moment we announced that today would be the last ride for this train, a range of enthusiasts were looking for opportunities to still hop on. I read that some were going to take the kids out too for that experience. Many call this train a living legend,” said Zviedre.

“Train fans,” as machinist Emīls Jansons called them, could also be seen on platforms. Although the machinery has been upgraded, he said the machinist's cabin of the old train was unique.

“The legend of it is that it's the only round booth because all of the others are square candy, or there's a remade wedge. This is the round one. It's name is the Globe,” said the machinist.

“Everything has to change. It's 57 years old. Metal does not last forever, however much you like. Locksmiths have golden hands, there's some kind of reserve put in building here too,“ Emīls Jansons said.

After the final voyage, the train will retire while in the depot for a while. Whether it will travel to the museum, go to auction or be recycled, is not yet decided.

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