KiwiRail and CRRC sign deal for new locomotives and new relationship

15 August 2016 9:09AM

KiwiRail is taking a step forward in its relationship with CRRC that will see the Chinese rolling stock manufacturer take a bigger role in ensuring the successful performance of the locomotives it is supplying to New Zealand.

KiwiRail has just signed a deal to buy 15 more DL locomotives from CRRC to add to the existing fleet of 48, KiwiRail chief executive Peter Reidy said.

“As part of the deal a technical support team from CRRC will be sent to New Zealand to support the fleet of DLs, working beside our fleet engineers.” 
The deal also makes CRRC financially accountable for the performance of the locomotives up to specification over their lifetime.

The CRRC team will have five or six high-level engineers. 

“The CRRC technical staff will work closely with KiwiRail engineers to agree on modifications that will improve the overall reliability and longevity of these locomotives,” Mr Reidy said. 

That will include providing training for New Zealand workers.

“However CRRC will not be doing any of the actual maintenance,“ he said.

The team will also ensure that a suitable inventory of spare parts is maintained.

The push for the new arrangement had come from KiwiRail, he said.

The same approach is being used increasingly overseas, including by South African rail company Transnet, which has just signed a contract for 270 locomotives. 

“It’s the way things are moving,” Mr Reidy said.

The new locomotives will replace 23 others expected to reach the end of their useful life between now and the peak freight period in 2018, when the new locomotives are expected to be in operation.

“We need them to be able to keep moving the 16 per cent of New Zealand’s freight that KiwiRail moves annually,” Mr Reidy said.

Six of the locomotives will be needed on the Port of Tauranga to Westfield MetroPort corridor, with freight volumes set to grow as the size of the ships coming to Tauranga grows. The remainder will be deployed in the North Island

The new Gen 2.3 locomotives will have improvements to the braking system to enhance the performance and reliability of the fleet.

CRRC is the world’s largest rail rolling stock company with more than 180,000 employees in 25 countries. It exports to 112 countries.

 

(Click on image to enlarge)

KiwiRail Chief Executive Peter Reidy, fifth from left, with Group GM Operations Iain Hill, fourth from left,  and Locomotives Asset Manager Scott Murray, second from left, with CRRC representatives at the signing ceremony to buy 15 more DL locomotives.

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