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In memory of Juri Savitski (1939–2020)

It is with great sadness that TLT AS can announce that on 30 May, Juri Savitski, director of the Tallinn Tram and Trolleybus Company from 1986 to 2000, passed away.

Juri Savitski ran the capital’s electric transport services in a challenging and controversial time. Finding funds to renew the tram and trolley fleet was difficult. Spare parts could only be purchased for hard-to-procure currency, while the price of electricity tripled in a short time. It was in large part precisely thanks to the business savvy of Savitski, who had experience in international business from having served as the representative of the Žiguli car company in the German Democratic Republic (GDR), that five brand-new KT-4 trams were procured for Tallinn from Czechoslovakia in 1990. In the following years, the tram fleet was primarily supplemented with used KT-4D trams purchased from the GDR. The company also continued renovating old trams and making them more comfortable for passengers. In his final year with the company, Savitski concluded a contract with the Berlin-based company Mitterwalder Gerätebau for the installation of low-floor central segments on Tallinn’s KT-4 trams, thereby laying the groundwork for the introduction of KT-6-type passenger-friendly trams on the city’s streets. Both the KT-4 and KT-6 trams are still in service today.  

During his last years with the company, Savitski had to stave off plans to restrict and even eliminate tram transport in Tallinn. It was also thanks in large part to his efforts that the plan to privatise Tallinn’s tram services was abandoned.

Former co-workers remember Juri Savistki as a practical and hard-working man, who made good on his word and knew how to support and encourage his subordinates. He set inspiring goals and always found the ways and means to achieve them.

TLT AS shares the grief of his friends and loved ones. The memory of a hard-working and enterprising director of public transport services lives on in our efforts to provide safe and convenient electric transport to our fellow citizens.