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2020 / 2021 Edition

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New box wagons from recycled coal hoppers

Freightliner box wagons

Freightliner recycle coal hoppers to build new box wagons in support of new contract with Tarmac

FREIGHTLINER have become the first UK rail operator to build new, European Standards-compliant box wagons from a significant proportion of recycled materials, as the company’s Heavy Haul business places into use a new fleet of wagons made using parts from redundant coal hoppers.

In support of a new a contract with Tarmac, Freightliner needed to provide a fleet of modern, high-capacity box wagons and decided to investigate the possibility of using recycled parts from HHA (102-tonne) coal hoppers that had recently been made redundant by the national decline in coal usage.

With the help of Greenbrier Europe, Freightliner’s wagon provider of choice, it was determined that, with some modifications, the bogies and some of the braking equipment from the hoppers would be compatible with an existing design of box wagons that Greenbrier had previously produced.

As a result, in November 2015, Freightliner Maintenance Ltd (FML) in York began the recovery and modification of the bogies which were then transported by Freightliner Road Services to Greenbrier Europe in Poland who completed the production of the wagons.

The first 23 brand new MWA (102-tonne) open box wagons have now arrived in the UK, transported by Freightliner Poland. Throughout the whole complex process Freightliner engaged fully with the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) to ensure that UK and European safety standards and legal requirements were met.

‘This project has been a success thanks to the effective collaboration between Freightliner’s Heavy Haul, Maintenance, Road Services and Freightliner Poland businesses. We would also like to thank our key suppliers Greenbrier and SNC Lavalin for their support with the project,’ said Paul Smart, managing director of Freightliner Heavy Haul Ltd.

Joerg Greshake, sales and marketing director with Greenbrier Europe, commented: ‘The great working relationship we have with Freightliner meant that we could work together to find an innovative and sustainable box wagon solution that fully met the needs of both the customer and ORR standards.’

Chris Swan, senior manager of rail and shipping at Tarmac, said: ‘Modern, efficient wagons have an important role to play as we drive freight expansion and increase the transportation of materials from production sites to construction markets. It’s good to see equipment and materials being repurposed, especially as this is a key part of Tarmac’s approach to sustainability and business.’

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