We have had to live with corona measures for an entire year now, and that time has not been easy for people or companies. As a provider of public transport services, TLT has not only been ensuring the maintaining of a vital service but has also provided protection against infection for public transport users. Thanks to the continuous disinfection of public transport, in which we used additional forces and the full preservation of timetables, public transport in the capital operated safely and reliably throughout 2020. Within the company, we minimized physical contacts, brought meetings and conferences to an electronic environment.
Despite the constraints arising from the corona situation, we have continued with positive developments aimed at providing the best service to the citizens and implementing a modern management model in the company. We were able to successfully fulfill the main task – to keep the public transport of the capital functional and modern. Our development potential is also evidenced by the annual report recently approved by the Supervisory Board, which summarizes the trends of the past year in Estonia’s largest public transport company.
TLT as an industry leader.
The capabilities of TLT in their field are vividly expressed by the following facts:
at the end of 2020, the company had 583 buses, 66 trams, and 50 trolleys;
73 bus, 4 tram, and 4 trolleybus lines were served;
34.1 million line kilometers were covered during the year;
more than 90 million passengers were served;
line kilometers were increased by 5%.
Positive developments in the company’s management culture and competence are also confirmed by the fact that last year the backlog decreased by more than 50%. Adherence to schedules also improved significantly. This was the result of better work organization and a staffing strategy involving employees. The commendable developments did not go unnoticed by the townspeople, and in the opinion poll of passengers conducted by Turu-uuringute AS, Tallinn’s public transport received a high score of 4.13 on a five-point scale. 87% of users were satisfied with trams, 78% with buses, and 62% with trolleybuses. 70% of public transport users were in favor of the introduction of electric buses, 61% considered gas buses to be a good solution, and 67% of city dwellers supported the construction of new tram connections. The results confirmed that we are on the right track.
Despite a difficult year, we were able to launch processes that make the company’s service more environmentally friendly, user-friendly, urban-space friendly, and economical, as envisaged in our development strategy. The year 2020 will go down in history of TLT as the beginning of the transition to gas buses.
The advent of gas buses.
As for buses, we have decided to switch predominantly to gas by 2025. To this end, we plan to bring 350 gas buses to the route in the coming years. Overcoming the difficulties caused by the corona crisis, we brought the first 100 buses to Tallinn in the second half of 2020. In order to service buses, changes had to be made quickly in the maintenance and repair base, and the necessary information had to be acquired to service modern technology and low-emission vehicles. We started building refueling capacity, and the compressed gas filling station on Peterburi tee was completed in January this year. The construction of a new filling station will also start on Kadaka Road in the coming months. We also announced a tender for the purchase of the next 100 gas buses, thus ensuring the continuation of the project.
The introduction of gas buses is an important step not only for our company and the city of Tallinn but for the whole of Estonia. Our practical experience in implementing environmentally-friendly solutions puts TLT at the forefront throughout the country. We are ready to fulfill this responsibility with dignity by sharing the information and experience gained with all interested parties. The launch of the gas bus project confirms the ability and potential of our employees.
Since last year, TLT has had an ISO 9001: 2015 certificate in quality management and company management. All our sub-units contributed to this achievement.
Serious preparatory work was followed by the awarding of the ISO 9001: 2015 standard by the recognized certifier Bureau Veritas Eesti OÜ. The purpose of the standard is to facilitate the fulfillment of promises given to the customer, which in turn expresses the most important business principle of TLT.
In our field of activity, the quality management system certificate has been issued to a few. Reaching this confirms TLT’s international level in providing public transport services and organizing the maintenance and repair of public transport. The next challenge for us will be to implement the ISO 14001 international environmental management standard. For TLT, as the leader of the green revolution that has begun in public transport, it is a natural continuation of the current developments.
We started offering special transport.
Last year, the preparations for the management of AS Termak’s assets were completed, and this year we started performing special transports. We combined the experience of the company that has provided the service so far and the innovation of TLT, as a result of which the cooperation with both the city’s social service and service consumers has started smoothly.
The city saw our potential to raise the quality of special transports to a new level, to renew the fleet, to organize the logistics solutions related to the service. We did not deceive the trust of the city government, and we ensured better availability and reliability of special transport. The fleet offering this specific service will also improve significantly in the coming months.
The financial year was successful.
Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the financial year was successful for TLT. The company exceeded the planned revenues by 1.7 million euros, implementing cost savings of 6.2 million euros and reducing the planned loss by 8 million euros. We also made significant forward-looking investments.
The bus rolling stock was significantly renewed, and the introduction of vehicles with lower fuel consumption reduced fuel consumption per 100 kilometers by about 3%, providing a total saving of 8% compared to 2019. The repair costs of buses also decreased by about 8%.
In addition, I would like to dwell on the creative projects initiated by our repair department to develop professional skills, which express the creative and seeking spirit prevailing in TLT. In the summer of 2020, we started the construction of the TLT1 retro bus, the prototype of which was the LIAZ bus of 1960. Today, the work is nearing completion.
Construction of an electric library bus for the Tallinn Central Library will begin in the near future. The bus will be completed at the end of the year. To continue the nature bus project popular among the townspeople, we will start the construction of 6 more project buses in June, this time the topic of which is the artifacts and legends of Tallinn.
It is difficult to overestimate the usefulness of special projects in raising professional skills. This is acknowledged by the fact that due to the significant improvement in the quality of maintenance, buses needed 2,300 fewer repairs in the workshop last year than in 2019.
2020 was a difficult year. However, TLT achieved its planned goals by ending the financial year with good financial results, developing the competence of the organization and employees, moving forward with important projects, and leading the city’s environmentally friendly initiatives. We are constantly on the move, without giving up a single opportunity, to make public transport an even more attractive opportunity to travel in the capital.