First public transport in Norilsk was truck and bus hybrid

First public transport in Norilsk was truck and bus hybrid

February 20, 2023

The first passenger transport in Norilsk was converted from ordinary imported and domestic trucks. Equipped with a closed booth for passengers. Inside, a small stove-potbelly stove was installed.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. That handicraft transformation was made by local craftsmen in Norilsk garages. Such transport wasn’t comfortable or warm, but during peak hours, passengers hung in clusters on the steps.

Since 1944, batches of lend-lease trucks arrived in Norilsk. Basically, those were three-axle American Studebakers with a carrying capacity of 2.5 tons. The most capacious monster, made on the basis of the huge American tractor Mac, entered the city legends.

The Mac was distinguished by its large size and, accordingly, much greater passenger capacity. Including standing places during peak hours, it could fit a hundred or even more passengers. That bus was remembered for its powerful roaring engine and huge smoke exhaust.

“When the legendary Mac appeared, it was heard even on Zavodskaya street, while it was on Octyabrskaya. When it was coming, the men jumped into it right on the go, got out the same way. The city changed rapidly – and the buses changed along with it. I remember the fall of 1951 well. We left the train at the Zero Point, and there were new sparkling buses. Even the streets were specially paved for those beauties”, recalled Albina Kuzina from Norilsk.

In the History Spot’s previous publication, we said that the USSR ski team trained in Norilsk.

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Text: Svetlana Ferapontova, Photo: Nornickel Polar Branch archive

February 20, 2023

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