In 2020, we exceeded the target that we jointly set with the Federal Government to halve the amount of rail transport noise affecting residents living near Federal rail lines by 2020. By the end of 2020, all active freight cars in the DB Cargo fleet in Germany had been fitted with whisper brakesno. 05 and, as part of the Federal Government’s noise remediation program, fixed active and passive soundproofing measures were implemented on a total of 2,039 km of the rail network.

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2030/2050 noise remediation target

We know that continuing to reduce nuisance rail transport noise for local residents is a key requirement for successfully continuing the shift in the mode of transport toward rail. That is why we adopted our new, long-term 2030/2050 noise remediation target in September 2020:

  • In continuing the Federal Government’s noise remediation program, we will reduce rail transport noise on a total of 3,250 km of existing lines by 2030. This in turn will alleviate noise pollution for about 800,000 people, thus more than half of the residents living near lines affected by rail transport noise.
  • By 2050, we will have completely remedied the noise pollution caused by rail transport on the total of 6,500 km of existing DB lines, which in turn means that we will have remedied rail noise pollution for all of the about 1.6 million affected residents.

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Noise remediation and prevention

Since 1999, we have reduced noise pollution for residents living near rail lines through the voluntary noise remediation program for existing Federal rail lines. We are reducing noise pollution on particularly affected lines by using fixed noise remediation measuresno. 25, such as noise barriers and windows and noise-proof ventilators in residential buildings.

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Refitting and new procurement of quiet freight cars

DB Cargo freight cars equipped with V brake shoes
in operation in Germany
(as of Dec 31)




 New freight cars




Freight cars refitted with whisper brakes




Quiet freight cars




Since the end of 2020, DB Cargo’s entire active freight car fleet in Germany has been running with quiet brake shoes.

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