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Ukrainian Refugees: RDC-Deutschland to the Rescue 

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
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Railroad Development Corp. subsidiary RDC Deutschland GmbH, headquartered in Hamburg, Germany, is operating a special daily train from Frankfurt/Oder on the Polish border to Hannover-Messe-Laatzen for Ukrainians fleeing their homeland from the Russian invasion.

The train, staffed by a five-member RDC crew and DRK (German Red Cross) employees, consists of 11 cars with seats for up to 660 passengers. The journey takes around three hours. In Hannover, passengers are escorted by DRK teams to a newly established central initial reception center in the exhibition halls. On behalf of the German government, the RDC special train will run this route daily until further notice. 

“Our team is grateful to be able to contribute what we do best in this situation: driving trains, looking after passengers in a friendly manner and bringing them safely to their destination,” said RDC Deutschland GmbH Managing Director Dr. Markus Hunkel. “We have several Ukrainian-speaking staff members with experience operating refugee trains. They all immediately declared their readiness for this assignment.

The RDC Group, headquartered in Hamburg, Germany, is a subsidiary of Railroad Development Corporation (RDC). Founded by railroad entrepreneurs Henry Posner III and  Robert A. “Bob” Pietrandrea, the medium-sized railroad company headquartered in Pittsburgh looks back on more than 25 years of industry experience at home and abroad. “Our family-owned company’s philosophy is to bring more environmentally friendly, passenger-oriented mobility to the rails through selected rail projects worldwide,” said Posner.

The RDC Group has been operating successfully in Germany since 2009. It currently operates three companies with around 280 employees: 

  1. RDC AUTOZUG Sylt GmbH (headquartered in Westerland/Sylt).
  2. BTE Bahntouristikexpress GmbH (headquartered in Nuremberg).
  3. RDC Asset GmbH, which operates the AUTOZUG Sylt, the passenger night train ALPEN-SYLT Nachtexpress, freight service Schleswig-Holstein and motor vehicle train Bahntouristikexpress between Hamburg and Lörrach. Also on offer are rail services (personnel, terminal services, charter services) and fleet development and management. Since January 2022, RDC has also been the main shareholder of Norddeutsche Eisenbahn Niebüll GmbH.
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