I S S U E 10 | N O V E M B E R 2023
W W W. R A I L E X P R E S S . C O M . A U
Calculating decarbonisation Pacific National’s carbon calculator helps businesses stay on track and reduce emissions PAGE 40
Innovations on show at AusRAIL PLUS 2023
The shift to autonomous condition monitoring
Rail Track Association celebrates half a century
FULL-SERVICE RAILWAY INFRASTRUCTURE
Building the #NextGenRailways of tomorrow
Dedicated Plant & Equipment
© ALSTOM SA. Rail Gallery
Alstom offers cutting-edge, condition-based, and predictive maintenance solutions to optimise asset management including rolling stock, signalling, and infrastructure.
Martinus is an Australian owned, family operated company
Contents Issue 10 - November 2023
From the Editor
A U S R A I L P L U S 2023
The biggest rail show in town
McConnell Dowell: Inland Rail projects boost for community
MOXA: The trusted partner in automation
TBH: Good relationships key to project success
Liebherr: No other brand for Fortmoy
GS1: Partners bring i-TRACE to life
Wabtec: Blending industrial leadership and digital technology
Zonegreen: Reducing rail depot risks
Loram: Full suite of maintenance services
Siemens: Transforming mobility for a better tomorrow
Alstom: AI revolutionising the railways
Martinus: In for the long haul
Swietelsky Rail: Challenging the status quo
Harrybilt: Equipment tailor-made for the tracks
D E C A R B O N I S AT I O N I N R A I L 48
tting-edge, , and predictive lutions to optimise asset cluding rolling stock, nfrastructure.
Pacific National: Doing the sums on carbon emissions
P LA N T A N D E Q U I P M E N T
Molycop: Steely commitment to rail
Adaptalift: Keeping materials on the move
O P E R AT I O N S A N D M A I N T E N A N C E
MRD: The shift to autonomous condition monitoring
Brimble: Toeing the lines
M A J O R P ROJ E CT S A N D I N F RA S T R U CT U R E www.alstom.com
I S S U E 10 | N O V E M B E R 2023
W W W. R A I L E X P R E S S . C O M . A U
Calculating decarbonisation Pacific National’s carbon calculator helps businesses stay on track and reduce emissions PAGE 40
COVER STORY Pacific National’s carbon calculator helps businesses stay on track and reduce emissions. See page 40
Innovations on show at AusRAIL PLUS 2023
The shift to autonomous condition monitoring
Rail Track Association celebrates half a century
MTR: Driving metro success in Australia
RATP: Making most of the transit experience
I N D U S T R Y A S S O C I AT I O N S
RISSB: Prioritising national productivity
PWI: Four pillars for growth
RTAA: Celebrating half a century
ARA: Rail Industry Award winners
CO N T RACT S, T E N D E R S, E O I S
The latest contracts and tenders
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From the Editor ISSUE 10 - NOVE M B E R 2023
Ray Chan Editor - Rail Express
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4 | ISSUE 10 - NOVEMBER 2023 | RAIL EXPRESS
Welcome to the November issue of Rail Express
he leading rail industry conference in the Asia-Pacific region, AusRAIL PLUS, is back again. Indeed, this very edition is being distributed at the event, so you may well have picked it up from one of the many stands and display booths. As we know, this meeting of the rail minds brings together stakeholders from across the sector to address its most pressing challenges and opportunities. With the sheer number of projects in the pipeline, the conference promises to deliver many thought-provoking solutions and ideas focussing on innovation, sustainability, safety, and infrastructure development. As well as visiting the various exhibits exploring the latest trends, technologies, and strategies that will shape the future of rail transport in Australia, delegates can attend the many technical sessions and hands-on demonstrations throughout the venue. This bumper issue of Rail Express features several of the more innovative products on show, ranging from digital solutions and hi-rail equipment to project management strategies and train manufacturing. For example, check out Alstom’s smart robot, aimed at predicting equipment failures and optimising maintenance schedules. Discover Zonegreen’s specialist safety software to protect rail personnel. Drop in at GS1’s stand and see how Project i-TRACE’s certified partners are making the most of the inventory management system. Investigate the many features of Liebherr excavators that make them a solid leader in their field. Meanwhile, learn more about the Inland Rail successes of businesses like Martinus and McConnell Dowell, while making sure to experience the ETCS simulator at the Siemens booth.
These form just the tip of the iceberg. As industry members wander through the centre, they are bound to discover many new and interesting innovations that will be of benefit to their respective businesses. And of course, there’s the wealth of knowledge to be shared. AusRAIL PLUS has a long-standing tradition of fostering collaboration and networking among rail industry professionals. With the Australian rail sector experiencing significant growth and transformation, this year’s event is undoubtedly more relevant than ever. Elsewhere, our cover feature looks at how Pacific National is driving carbon efficiency in the national supply chain, by helping shift more freight from trucks onto trains to reduce total transport emissions. Australia’s largest private rail freight operator has released its fourth Environment Social and governance (ESG) Report, outlining its continuing progress with decarbonisation initiatives and affirming its commitment to minimise the impact it has on the environment and communities in which it operates, while caring for its people. There are also a number of articles on some of our major maintenance operators, plant and equipment suppliers, and major project and infrastructure businesses, while we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Rail Track Association Australia. Together with the usual contributions from our industry partners, and news on the latest contracts and tenders, you have a packed issue in your hands that we hope will provide many minutes of informative reading.
WHEN THE WORK GETS DONE....
INNOVATION CONTINUES… RYAN BLACK
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New South Wales
Budget backs Sydney Metro City and Southwest The Parramatta light rail extension will include 14 new stops.
• The NSW Government has maintained investment in several significant rail projects as part of its $72.3 billion commitment to transport infrastructure in its 2023-24 Budget. Budget allocations include: • Investing an additional $1 billion in Sydney Metro City and Southwest to “get the project back on track after delays and cost blowouts left it unable to be completed” • Delivering the Sydney Metro–Western Sydney Airport, with six new stations to service the future Western Sydney International Airport with $7.9b over four years • $302.7 million reserved for a Western Sydney Rapid Bus network to connect the communities of Penrith, Liverpool, and Campbelltown to the future Western Sydney International Airport • An additional $300m to upgrade train station car parks and make stations more accessible through the installation of new lifts, ramps, and footbridges • $95.9m for the Fixing Country Rail program, to deliver improved capacity and reliability to the regional rail network and deliver a highly functional network for moving freight in and out of regional areas • $1.4b for the delivery of a new regional rail fleet to replace the ageing regional one. Australasian Railway Association chief executive Caroline Wilkie said it was encouraging to see the NSW Government continue its commitment to the vital Sydney Metro projects. “A safe, reliable and sustainable transport system is essential to enabling NSW communities to thrive as it is proven to deliver great economic, social and environmental benefits,” she said. “These city-shaping transport infrastructure projects in NSW not only create tens of thousands of jobs during construction but,
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once complete, provide a vital connection for communities and reduce congestion on our busy roads. “It is critical that we increase the capacity of the rail network to meet growing demand, with faster and more frequent and reliable services.” Wilkie said it was critical the Sydney Metro West project continued as planned to meet the needs of Sydney’s growing western suburbs. “The ARA looks forward to the completion of the Sydney Metro West review so the full benefits of the once-in-a-generation project can be realised by the community,” she said. “Rail plays an important role in the decarbonisation of transport and meeting Australia’s future net zero target. “An ARA report, Return to Rail Insights, published in December last year, confirmed the sustainable benefits of public transport, with two thirds (66 per cent) of respondents viewing rail as the most environmentally sustainable transport mode. “Greater use of public transport will be key to reducing emissions in our communities, while also supporting improved health outcomes – one commuter train takes 578 cars off the road.” PARRAMATTA LIGHT RAIL The Budget also reserved $200m to expedite the planning for the procurement, construction, and delivery of Parramatta Light Rail Stage 2 for Western Sydney. The commitment will hasten the project’s planning processes, providing a platform for the government to meet its election commitment to see construction on the project begin this term of Parliament. Parramatta Light Rail Stage 2 is a vital transport link that will connect the Parramatta CBD to Sydney Olympic Park via the growing communities of Camellia, Rydalmere, Ermington, Melrose Park and Wentworth Point.
The 10-kilometre extension will include 14 new light rail stops that will provide residents with a long-awaited public transport link and unlock future housing growth, serving a population of over 277,586 by 2041. Construction of the game-changing project will be phased, with the first phase being the construction of a 320-metre long light rail and active transport bridge over the Parramatta River between Wentworth Point and Melrose Park. Work on the new bridge will begin in 2024 and will be part of a new 8.5km walking and bike riding path that will run alongside the new light rail corridor. This latest commitment comes as updates to the alignment of the future Parramatta Light Rail Stage 2 are released, as part of the project’s Environmental Impact Statement that was undertaken last year. Planned changes to the Parramatta Light Rail Stage 2 alignment include: • Camellia foreshore to Rydalmere alignment and bridge amendment • Bridge and route alignment between Melrose Park and Wentworth Point • Replace existing bridge at Hill Road. The key benefits of these proposed amendments include: • Easier connections between the Rydalmere Ferry Wharf and future light rail services • A shorter route to improve light rail journey times • Reduced environmental impacts to the Narawang Wetland at Sydney Olympic Park reduced impacts to sensitive mangrove vegetation on the Parramatta River retention of significant fig trees and improved open spaces at Eric Primrose Reserve in Rydalmere. Planning approval for the full project is expected in early 2024, and procurement is now underway for the Wentworth to Melrose bridge construction works package.
• BALLAST CLEANING
• FLASH BUTT WELDING
• RAIL & CIVIL MAINTENANCE
Rolling Stock Operator (RSO)
Free travel for regular Armadale line users Regular customers of Perth’s Armadale train line will receive six months of free travel from the start of the anticipated 18-month closure on November 20. The State Government said the decision was made in recognition of the disruption and inconvenience the closure would have on regular public transport commuters. The new entitlement will mean daily users of public transport will save up to $1300 across the six-month period. Those eligible must: • be SmartRider users; and • have used an Armadale/Thornlie line train service at least once a week for at least 13 weeks (non-consecutive) in the last six months Those eligible will automatically have a free travel token applied to their SmartRider from November 20, 2023 to May 31, 2024, meaning they will not need to apply or register for the new free travel entitlement. More information on the travel scheme, including a method for passengers to see if they are eligible, will be available on the Transperth website in the lead-up to the shutdown. The free travel announcement comes as timetables for the replacement bus services are
As part of the works, the Armadale Line will be extended eight kilometres south to a new ground-level station in Byford.
on the Transperth website, allowing passengers to start familiarising themselves with their public transport options ahead of the Armadale Line shutdown. A combination of limited stop and all stop bus routes will give passengers options to get to the CBD and other local destinations. More than 100 additional buses will be used to help support the shutdown, while three new temporary bus interchanges are being built in Victoria Park, Cannington and Armadale. Timetables for Australind replacement road
coaches are also available, with passengers being offered a 50 per cent discount on fares during the shutdown. The road coaches will stop at the same locations as the Australind train, with Kwinana as an additional stop on the limited stops service, allowing passengers to transfer to the Mandurah Line. Transperth’s Journey Planner will be updated one month before the shutdown so that passengers can plan their journey in greater detail.
Trackless tram touches down for trials
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economic, business, transport, innovation and sustainability outcomes. The trackless trams are part of the shire’s plan to reduce congestion in the community, improve access to employment and contribute to urban regeneration. As a net zero emission vehicle, the tram will also support a reduction in carbon emissions as well as decreasing the number of cars on the road. The trial of the trackless tram has begun and will run through to November, with locals and stakeholders having the chance to ride the tram and be part of some user experience testing. In conjunction with event partners and sponsors, the City will also be presenting a Net Zero Transit Symposium on November 21 and 22 November at Rendezvous Perth Scarborough Hotel. The $2 million business case and trial for the trackless tram has been funded by the Australian Government.
C R E D I T: C I T Y O F S T I R L I N G
Australia’s first trackless tram has arrived to be prepared for use in the Perth shire of Stirling. After a long journey from Shanghai, China, the 30-metre tram has been delivered to the City’s administration centre, where it will undergo testing as part of a trial with partners from Curtin University, ITSG, CRRC and Shanghai Electric. The process will involve a range of experts who will examine how this technology works to help determine whether it can be implemented along Scarborough Beach Road. With its efficient and eco-friendly features, the trackless tram represents a mode of transportation that aligns with the City’s vision for sustainability with a local focus. The tram will connect people to busy, vibrant areas, creating better accessibility and generating urban redevelopment within the Scarborough Beach Road Activity Corridor. The trackless tram is the latest in sustainable mid-tier transport technology and has the potential to achieve positive
The trackless tram being delivered.
Sending the right signals for Gippsland line Work to prepare Victoria’s Gippsland line for a new signalling system continues to progress apace. During a recent 20-day construction blitz, more than 350 people worked over 47,000 hours, boring underground, trenching and installing pipe along 38 kilometres of track between Drouin and Moe while coaches replaced trains. Crews also hauled more than 8000 metres of cable, installed four signal masts and poured foundations for new signal equipment rooms. The new signalling system, in conjunction with track works and station upgrades already delivered as part of the Gippsland Line Upgrade, will enable additional services and future-proof the line. Work also began on an extension of the existing platform at Longwarry Station so trains can safely stop further away, with eight posts – each 5.5 metres long – driven 4m underground, and concrete panels to form the sides of the new section installed. Gippsland Line Upgrade works will progress alongside important V/Line maintenance and upgrade work later in spring. The V/Line work includes installing box culverts to allow water to follow under the line without preventing trains from running. Coaches will replace trains between
The Gippsland Line Upgrade will deliver more frequent and reliable train services to surrounding communities.
Southern Cross, Traralgon and Bairnsdale from Friday, November 24, to Saturday, December 9. The Gippsland Line Upgrade will deliver more frequent and reliable train services to the growing communities of Gippsland. This project will allow for extra daily services
between Traralgon and Melbourne. It is also creating more than 500 jobs in the region. The Morwell, Bunyip, Longwarry and Traralgon statiions will be upgraded, while a new bridge will be built over the Avon River at Stratford.
SRL portfolio to Pearson in Cabinet reshuffle New Victorian premier Jacinta Allan has handed over responsibility for the state’s multi-billion dollar infrastructure program to Danny Pearson. He has taken on the roles of transport infrastructure and the Suburban Rail Loop (SRL), portfolios previously held by Allan. Pearson will retain his responsibilities as Assistant Treasurer and minister for Worksafe and the TAC. Former public transport minister Ben Carroll has been elevated to deputy premier and will take on the education responsibilities. The cabinet shake-up did not reveal if there would be a new public transport minister. Tim Pallas will retain his critical responsibilities as Treasurer and industrial relations minister. Reflecting his ongoing work to drive productivity and growth to build a better future for Victorians, he will take on an expanded role as economic growth minister. Melissa Horne continues working with the logistics industry as ports and freight minister,
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The SRL will connect every metropolitan train line around Melbourne’s middle suburbs.
while also overseeing various other roles from roads and local government to casino, gaming and liquor regulation. Josh Bull remains the Parliamentary Secretary for transport and level crossing removals. Allan said the new Government make-up would not delay projects such as the Level Crossing Removal Program, with 72 level
crossings already dismantled – well ahead of schedule – improving safety and travel times across Melbourne and unlocking more than 31 MCGs of open space, creating new parks, playgrounds, pedestrian and cycling paths. “For instance, Pakenham will be level crossingfree by 2025 andwill be delivered more than a year ahead of schedule – cutting congestion and making it easier than ever for Victorians in the south-eastern suburbs to travel on public transport,” she said. Works at Pakenham Station are powering ahead to make level crossings at McGregor, Main and Racecourse roads a thing of the past. As part of Pakenham’s level crossing works, the metropolitan rail line will be extended by 2.5 kilometres to the brand-new Pakenham East Station, delivering an extra transport option for Melbourne’s newest suburb and delivering more trains when the Metro Tunnel opens in 2025 – cutting travel times by up to 50 minutes a day.
Keeping projects on track since 1965.
Since our first major rail commission in 1977, TBH has undertaken over 250 separate commissions on rail projects, including:
– Trackworks – OHW – Signalling
– Stations – Rolling Stock – Maintenance
With experience and deep industry knowledge across the entire project lifecycle, TBH brings practical project controls and portfolio management skills to every engagement. We provide the insights that enable informed decision making that de-risk projects.
Connecting with rail stakeholders Sydney plays host to the largest rail industry conference in the Asia-Pacific region, AusRAIL PLUS, from November 13 to 16. The four days of information, exhibits and networking attract key industry leaders and decision makers from across Australia, New Zealand and beyond. Attendees will include representatives from the following sectors: • Passenger rail operators • Freight rail operators • Heavy haul operators • Rolling stock manufacturers • Contractors and suppliers • Consultants • Government and industry representatives This year’s program promises to be a platform for discussion on the innovations, trends and collaborations that will shape the future of rail in Australia and beyond. AusRAIL PLUS will provide new insights on the big challenges and opportunities facing the industry ahead of another year of growth in 2024. The growing focus on sustainable mobility will feature again this year, as the industry continues its leadership on sustainability issues. With the Federal Government progressing plans for its transport infrastructure decarbonisation roadmap, AusRAIL PLUS will provide an opportunity to share the latest insights on the industry’s progress towards net zero, and explore the technology, skills and policy changes that will be required to support that goal.
Dedicated sustainability streams during the conference will provide an opportunity for a deep dive on critical issues facing the industry, from the transition away from diesel fuels to improved integration of rail as part of sustainable, integrated transport networks. The rapid advancement of technology will also be a key focus at AusRAIL PLUS 2023. While the conference program will feature a range of presentations on how new technologies are transforming the rail industry, the exhibition hall will showcase cutting-edge technologies from rail organisations from around the world. The conference program will explore the key projects driving infrastructure development in the rail industry. Participants will have the opportunity to hear the latest updates on projects such as Cross River Rail, Sydney Metro and the Metro Tunnel project. As the country nears the peak of the rail construction boom currently under way, AusRAIL PLUS will provide an essential forum to explore the challenges of the current wave of growth in the industry and discuss solutions to support the long term strength of the rail industry’s construction sector. A key part of these discussions will be skills, as the industry continues to grapple with growing shortages. The conference will provide the opportunity to discuss how the industry
Presentations will be made from the major Australian rail network operators.
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is responding to current shortages, and what needs to be done to prepare for the retirement cliff that is approaching. AusRAIL PLUS provides an invaluable opportunity for industry to come together and discuss these and many other issues impacting the future of rail to help chart the course towards a sustainable, connected, and innovative rail industry. Apart from the numerous exhibits on display, highlights include: Day 1: • Welcome drinks Day 2: • Women in Rail breakfast • Opening by New South Wales transport minister Jo Haylen • Address by the chief executive officers of Sydney Trains, Metro Trains Melbourne, Queensland Rail, KiwiRail and Auckland City Rail Link • Young professionals lunch • Several technical sessions • Yellow Dinner Day 3: • Presentations on high speed rail • Panel on interoperability • Major project briefs from Sydney Metro, Cross River Rail, Rail Projects Victoria • Several technical sessions Day 4: • Presentation by the rail manufacturing advocate Jacqui Walters • Presentation on robotics and articifial intelligence in the rail industry • Presentation from the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator • Panel on decarbonisation • Presentation on the National Rail Action Plan • AusRAIL PLUS gala dinner As well, delegates can visit the Jacobs’ AusRAIL PLUS 2023 theatre, a purposebuilt venue for more than 140 people in the exhibition to host over 25 hourly presentations over the course of the conferece. The theatre presentations are free for all to attend, and the 30-minute presentation timeslots cover a wide variety of topics from safety to signalling, innovation to sustainability, and more. On the following pages, Rail Express features some of the exhibitors who will be at AusRAIL PLUS promoting their products.
Rail-Express_210x297mm_bleeding_5mm_print.pdf 1 2023/9/28 上午10:47
AusRAIL PLUS McConnell Dowell has been contracted to work on the Beveridge to Albury section of Inland Rail.
Benefits far beyond the rail for central Victoria McConnell Dowell is playing a crucial role building key components for the Inland Rail project. Projects today transcend far beyond their physical form in the valuable infrastructure they leave behind. Inland Rail’s Beveridge to Albury Tranche 1 is a shining example of how a legacy of a rail project can have benefits well beyond the tracks for the local businesses and the broader community. McConnell Dowell was engaged by the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) in October 2022 to undertake construction for the Beveridge to Albury Tranche 1 Inland Rail project in regional Victoria. The task requires a variety of civil, structural and rail works focusing on ensuring that the required clearance for double-stacked freight trains on the existing North East rail line is achieved. Inland Rail will improve the market connections for regional Australia and provide faster and more reliable movement of freight. Works are now well underway at numerous sites with the construction of a new road bridge in Glenrowan, track lowering under the Murray Valley Highway at Barnawartha North and the modification of Wangaratta Station precinct. Works will also soon begin to replace the existing Seymour-Avenel road bridge and Green Street road bridge in Wangaratta. McConnell Dowell has successfully engaged with more than 130 local businesses since last October to work on the project, ranging from large-scale earthworks to office supplies and accommodation. Working with local businesses means more local employment opportunities, with 90 per cent of the workforce living within the local Victorian regions. As an example, a business run by Josh Trimble at the small High Country town of Myrrhee has been engaged by McConnell Dowell since November 2022 across each of the active Inland Rail sites. This has enabled him to offer his four
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young apprentices a rare opportunity to work on a large-scale construction project right on their doorstep. “It is exciting to be part of a tier one construction project in North East Victoria. These opportunities don’t happen very often, and it provides the team with great exposure and learning experiences,” Trimble said. HC Civil, another Victorian High Countrybased business, is also reaping the benefits. Managing director Brenton Simpson said having a large infrastructure project within an hour of where he lived was a massive opportunity for it to invest in local people and in their business. “We have 10 employees, machines and earthmoving equipment employed on the Inland Rail sites at Glenrowan, Barnawartha North and Wangaratta,” he said. “This rail project has given us the opportunity to invest in our business, invest in people, invest in gear, invest in training and staff. “We would directly support eight to 10 businesses in the Wangaratta and Albury region and it’s important we continue to do so, to support local jobs in the region.” McConnell Dowell Inland Rail project manager Tom Foley said the team had enjoyed working with and meeting the locals and seeing the passion they have for their community. “We understand that the project is largely just a visitor to the communities we are working in and we want them to feel better off for having had us after the project is complete,” he said. There are many advantages to utilising a local workforce. Local suppliers have been able to bring their knowledge of the area and skills to improve the efficiency of access to services and supplies. Established relationships with the local authorities and other businesses has proved
to be invaluable and their flexible and accommodating nature helps to ensure the success of the project and critical timelines. McConnell Dowell’s new General Manager Rail, Harriet Christopherson, said providing a better life was the cornerstone of McConnell Dowell’s approach and is the broader philosophy that it tried to bring into all its projects. “Inland Rail is a fantastic example of how a rail project can bring legacy to the people who live in the project’s local communities,” she said. “Of course, as engineers we are super excited about the engineering and the clever things that sit behind what we bring to a project, but the real pride comes from the difference we can make and the broader benefits of a project like this to the supply chain and local economy. “Benefits like employment, skills development, traineeships, growth for local businesses and working relationships you form that can carry on into the future. We are providing opportunities for people and businesses to upskill and grow and realise long lasting benefits having worked with us on this project. “These benefits can change lives and boost local regional communities. “I think this is really the broader appeal of our sector and is a fantastic opportunity for us to rebrand our industry to attract a new and more diverse workforce. “We must be better at connecting people to how our projects bring benefits that transcends the built form. “That is what will attract new people to our sector and provide the rewarding future careers we all know that exist in rail.” For more information on McConnell Dowell Rail please visit: www.mcconnelldowell.com/ specialist-capabilities/rail Or catch up with the McConnell Dowell team at stand 530.
AusRAIL P L U S
The trusted partner in automation Automation specialist Moxa has established a global reputation for its diverse field network communication devices that enable multiprotocol connectivity for integrating different brand field equipment. Railway operators from around the world have discovered new levels of operational efficiency by deploying Moxa’s unique railway technologies, such as intelligent wireless intercarriage connections, millisecond-level ethernet redundancy, and WLAN roaming solutions. With more than 35 years of experience in industrial networking, Moxa has a proven record of developing long-lasting and reliable devices. In addition, Moxa has been part of hundreds of successful deployments in major railway systems worldwide to enhance passenger comfort and network operations. Moxa’s portfolio includes more than 400 railway-specific products ranging from onboard to trackside, and end devices to network architecture. Moxa senior engineer Angie Chen tells Rail Express that the company provides integrated IP solutions that enhance the safety and efficiency of railway operations. “Its end devices include computers tailor-made for deployment on trains, and controllers and remote I/O products for condition monitoring. For railway IP network design, it uses its industrial networking expertise to provide a variety of ethernet switches for onboard, trackside, train stations, control centres, wireless AP/client for train-to-ground communications, and smart network management software to help optimise the efficiency of the network,” she said. “The hundreds of successful deployments of Moxa’s products in major railway systems such as CCTV, PIS (Passenger Infotainment Systems), CBTC (Communication-based Train Control), and TCMS (Train Control Management Systems) have proven that our leading IP solutions are capable of providing high reliability and network availability that meet the demands of the rail industry.” To bring more devices to the network, MOXA’s terminal server is an important bridge
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The structure and topology of a Moxa network.
between legacy serial devices and IP-based networks, facilitating effortless integration without the need for costly upgrades. In the latest generation, the terminal server can also encrypt the serial data to ensure secure data transmission in the network. Apart from the serial terminal server, MOXA offers gateways and converters that covers major industrial protocols, including PROFINET, EtherNet/IP, and Modbus TCP, enhancing the competitiveness of MOXA’s edge solution. “ Moxa’s reputation in the industry is anchored by our redundancy protocols, Turbo Ring and Turbo Chain, offering swift recovery times and reduced cabling costs compared to traditional ring coupling methods,” Chen said. She said that three key trends in network connectivity had emerged in recent years: cybersecurity, higher bandwidth, and increased Power over Ethernet (PoE) capabilities. • Cybersecurity “Cybersecurity is gaining more prominence in industry because of potentially devastating impact of cyberattack in critical infrastructure,” Chen said. “Moxa leads the industry by achieving compliance with the IEC 62443-4-1 standard, which specifies process requirements for the secure development of products used in industrial automation and control systems. “At AusRAIL, we will also showcase our first EC-62443-4-2 certified industrial switch. Additionally, the visitor can see security guidance in Moxa’s network management software, which lets users easily implement a secure network.”
• Higher bandwidth As the number of networked devices continues to surge, the volume of data increases and push the demand for higher bandwidth in wayside networks. “Moxa’s latest-generation DIN-Rail switch series boasts 2.5G ports, effectively addressing this need,” Chen said. “Additionally, the modular switches feature 10G ports, facilitating high-speed data communication, streamlining field wiring, and reducing installation costs, thus enhancing modern railway applications.” • Higher PoE power output To accommodate the escalating connectivity and power requirements of security infrastructures, some devices such as pan-tiltzoom robotic cameras and wireless access points demand higher power output. “Moxa’s latest power-over-ethernet (PoE) switches conform to the highest IEEE 802.3bt PoE++ standards, delivering up to 90 W per link to provide full power for PTZ cameras and wireless devices,” Chen said. “Distinguishing ourselves from commercial PoE solutions, our robust products boast cybersecurity features, robust EMI/surge protection, and a wide operating temperature range of -40 to 75°C, designed to withstand harsh environments. “Featuring Smart PoE technology, our PoE switches can autonomously detect the power class of powered devices (PDs), streamlining configuration and deployment. They can conduct failure checks and automatically reboot PDs to ensure a stable system operation.” Visit the Moxa display at stand 314.
At MTR, our vision is to “Keep Cities Moving”. We believe that world class metros enable thriving sustainable cities. We are proud and remain committed to our mission of connecting communities across Australia through close partnerships with Governments, the rail industry and the customers we have been serving over the last 15 years.
Building relationships key to project success Consultancy TBH continues to be in demand for its expertise in helping deliver major projects on time. It’s been quite a baptism of fire for TBH (Tracey Brunstrom & Hammond) managing director Jonathan Jacobs, who took on the role about a year and a half ago. TBH is Australia’s largest privately owned, independent specialist planning and management consultancy, with offices across Australia, Asia and Middle East. Since its first major rail commission in 1977, TBH has undertaken more than 250 separate commissions in this sector, including trackworks, OHW, signalling, stations, train procurement and maintenance. With a large pipeline of rail projects currently being carried out across Australia, the company has been a major beneficiary of the boom, as rail operators and contractors seek out TBH’s consultancy expertise in planning and project controls to help deliver their programs efficiently and on time. “We’ve experienced some phenomenal growth,” Jacobs said. “We’ve increased our numbers by more than a third and the same goes for our revenue, so it’s been a very prosperous couple of years. “But we are seeing some softening in the market, so we’re keeping a close eye on things and I think productivity improvement will be a key differentiator to delivering successful projects. “Basically, we need to increase our output with the same amount of inputs.” Jacobs said research had shown that productivity in Australia has not increased since 1990. “We’re coming from a long way behind. That’s something that’s really of interest to me at the moment and I’m keen to see how we at TBH can help companies improve productivity, because there’s still an enormous pipeline of projects out there in the rail industry.,” he said. “There are headwinds everywhere, but we are fortunate enough to be in a position where Australia is still forecasted to grow 1.8 per cent annually over the long term. “I think we need to remember the basics, which is that it’s all about people, processes and systems; and systems are not something that just stand alone. “You have to have people that understand
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what ‘good’ looks like and why they’re doing things a certain way so that they can get the best outputs and they understand what they are looking at. “Then you need to have robust processes to help incorporate repeatability and traceability into the way things are done, so that information is consistent and reliable – then you can start using lessons learned and help improve productivity going forward. “And then there’s the technology aspect, collating all the data, sifting through it all and then disseminating it in bite-sized pieces. “We now have good reliable data for better trend analysis and better forecasting. And from that, we can automate reporting which gives us early warnings and genuine insights as to what things are working, and what are not. “So we have the time to actually do something about the problems, and we have the ability to mitigate issues as well as take proactive actions. “That’s something that I’m quite passionate about at the moment, and what TBH will be focused on, in helping our clients to increase productivity.” THE TBH PROCESS TBH’s clientele list is certainly impressive, a veritable who’s who of Australian rail: Western Sydney Airport, Sydney Metro, Cross River Rail in Queensland, the Suburban Rail Loop project in Melbourne, various METRONET jobs in WA, and indeed, every metro line in the country. “What our client partners want is an organisation like ourselves, that truly understands how to deliver a project, and what key indicators to track and what works and what doesn’t,” Jacobs said. He said a new service TBH offers is Organisational Change Management (OCM), which is used to imbed the project controls uplift they provide their clients. It is based on putting the right governance in place then educating the project team as to what their roles and responsibilities are and how this fits into the bigger picture. “So for example, what are the gates you need to go through? What are the standards you
TBH managing director Jonathan Jacobs.
need to achieve? How do you move from one gate to the other? What are your exit and entry criteria? Who is responsible for doing what and what is the process? “And then marrying that with a Change Management and Communications Plan to help bring along their people for the journey so that they buy in to this change. That’s something that is essential to lift productivity and drive efficiencies, as people get comfortable doing things the way that they’ve always done it. “If you don’t get them to buy into the change, they’ll just revert back to old practices. “You also need to give people visibility of the journey and you’ve got to allow them to feed back into the process so that they can own their future.” Jacobs said TBH specialists had thorough knowledge of the drivers of both client and contractor. “We understand contracts. We understand which risks are associated with the particular types and can quickly identify and highlight where the challenges and opportunities lie.,” he said. Jacobs is a big supporter of collaborative contracting, where all parties work together for the successful completion of a project. “It’s not just about the project, it’s also about the benefits that project brings to communities and to our country as a whole,” he said. “We should be aiming for win-wins instead of just doing things the same way and hoping for a different result. “In such a constrained market at the moment, I think collaborative contracting, especially for complex, high risk projects is particularily attractive. For these projects to be delivered successfully, the risks need to be allocated fairly to the party that can best manage them: parties will be incentivised to work together to acheive a common outcome and we’ll see fewer cost blowouts and delays.” TBH has been a regular exhibitor at AusRAIL conferences and will be there again this year. To catch up with Jacobs, email him at jonathan. firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the TBH way.
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Fortmoy stays ahead of the game In the space of less than 10 years, Sydney-based Fortmoy Excavations has made a name for itself as a major plant hire and excavation company. And the business is of the firm opinion that when it comes to excavating machines, Liebherr leads the way. Fortmoy was established in 2014 by Shane Donoghue, named after his home town of Fortmoy in South Tipperary Ireland. Having worked on his family’s 250-acre farm up until he left for Australia in 2011, Donahoe had a strong knowledge of agricultural machinery, but his interest in construction equipment only started after he got his first job with the Killard Group in Sydney as an operator. His younger brother Henry – who was wellexperienced in working on large construction projects – moved to Australia in 2013 and joined the business as a partner in 2015. From a humble start, the Donoghues identified a gap in the market to provide equipment and experienced operators to Sydney businesses, with the company growing strongly over the past few years. “Today we provide plant hire and excavation services to a wide range of civil construction industries, including rail,” Donoghue said. “We are also part of the operation team when we run hi-rail equipment on various rail projects throughout Sydney metropolitan and other parts of NSW.” Some of them include Sydney Trains, Sydney International Airport, the rail shutdowns throughout the Sydney metro area, and working with Laing O’Rourke. Fortmoy bought its first Liebherr A 922 Rail excavator in May 2022, and it’s fair to say that the machine has impressed. “Currently we have three A 922 Rails in operation. I believe the A 922 Rail is the best machine on track and it has the best lifting capacity,” Donoghue said. “In the last few years, the railway activity across construction and maintenance has risen strongly and it will continue to grow in the next five to 10 years. “With so many significant construction and maintenance projects, the industry has seen reforms regarding policies, procurement, compliance, and safety to drive innovation and ensure greater productivity and efficiency for the whole industry. “Therefore, it is critical for Fortmoy to keep up and stay ahead of the game, which means we need the best possible team and equipment. Liebherr machines meet and exceed these requirements.” Donoghue valued the A 922’s more advanced
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Fortmoy currently has three A 922 Rails in operation.
features, acknowledging that the machine had been purposely built for the rail industry. “To my knowledge, Liebherr is one of the first OEMs which produces purpose-built high rail excavators and as the result, Liebherr is far ahead of other competitors,” he said. “Thanks to all of that, Liebherr rail machines are ready to go to the track without any modification, like other OEMs tend to do, and are able to deliver the higher level of efficiency.” He said the A 922 Rail’s features included • Faster and safer operations • Best lifting capacity in the class • Fuel efficiency • Strong stability on the track “As a result, Fortmoy can optimise our operation, increase productivity and lower operation cost,” Donoghue said. An important part of using the equipment is that operators love it. “It is easy to operate and very comfortable to use, even in extreme weather,” Donoghue said. “Henry and I are very much hands on and have spent considerable time using the A 922 Rail in various applications and can attest to the comfort, visibility and performance of this machine. “They also feel more stable and safe and it’s clear everything has been designed by Liebherr with the operator and safety in mind.” Fortmoy expects to increase its Liebherr fleet in the future. “As mentioned before , the rail industry keeps growing in the short to medium term and with the increase in new rail infrastructure a steady rise in maintenance will be required in the long run,” Donoghue said. “Fortmoy has a strong future as we see high growth in the business over the years.
“We continue to invest in Liebherr machines and will have a few more A 922 Rails coming in the next few months.” THE A 922 RAIL The development of the A 922 Rail was the result of decades of experience and striving to create products with the highest level of efficiency and performance. The new generation continues the formula for success of its predecessor with new ideas and improvements. With an operating weight of 20,40023,400kg, the railroad excavator is designed for high performance and can be configured to meet country-specific emissions regulations. Liebherr recognises that a sophisticated machine concept is essential to deliver optimal performance in payloads, stability and flexibility. The new R 922 Rail delivers continued, familiar, intelligent superstructure design with a separate boom cylinder mounting and a solid rail chassis to ensure reliable stability and maximum load capacity for track operations. In addition to standard ballasting, a revised heavy ballast weight with a reduced rear swivel radius of 2000 mm is now also available. The maximum payloads can also be increased by a Power Lift mode and an optional four-point support. Underneath, there is a range of undercarriage versions with different gauges, rail wheels and suspension systems, enabling it to be used on tracks anywhere in the world. Find out more at the Liebherr display at stands 33-35. For more information, visit: www.liebherr.com.au
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GS1 partners bring i-TRACE to life The use of i-TRACE barcoding continues to grow in the rail industry, with currently nine alliance partners having gained certification. Project i-TRACE was initiated by the rail industry and the Australasian Railway Asssociation to digitise inventory management, automate all steps in the supply chain and provide critical information throughout the life cycle of a product, part or component using ISO certified GS1 global data standards. It was a response to addressing the manual, resource hungry, error prone and inefficient processes in the rail industry supply chain. Project i-TRACE standards provide a common and consistent digital “language” to be used between stakeholders in the rail supply chain. It sets a digital foundation for the future of rail. Participating organisations can use the system to meet global data standards and support the growing use of automation, leverage data analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence to drive new efficiency gains and cost savings in their operations. GS1 industrial sectors director Tony Repaci said the successful implementation of i-TRACE barcoding depended on the certified partners. “These organisations have the training and knowledge to meet the data and label/plate requirements of Project i-TRACE as specified in the Australian Rail AIDC Guideline,” he said. At AusRAIL Plus 2023, Project i-TRACE will showcase GS1 global data standards in partnership with three GS1 certified barcoding certified partners. Visit project i-TRACE and the certified partners at stand 546. TROTEC LASER Trotec Laser manufactures a complete range of high quality laser marking solutions from entry level to high spec customisable systems, which includes a range of high speed fibre galvo lasers that are capable of directly marking most metal and industrial plastic substrates. General manager Mark Luft said the systems could be as simple as a standalone workstation, or a fully integrated system with automated material handling capability, including smart camera systems to verify data integrity. “We have a range of options that allow manufacturers and suppliers to add fully compliant traceability marks to flat, curved, angled and multi-faceted surfaces,” he said. “The marking itself can done in a number of ways, which is not only durable but will not affect the integrity of the product. The end
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A Trotec GS1 barcode plate.
result is a high speed flexible marking process that can include additional data as required.” Luft said being a certified GS1 partner was extremely important for the business. “Firstly, having an intimate understanding of the GS1 standards and requirements means we are able to work with our customers more effectively,” he said. “Then knowing that our machines and software are capable of generating fully compliant barcodes that have been verified by GS1 means customers can be confident that a Trotec laser marking solution will not only work, but we can guide new users through the laser marking process as well as the GS1 requirements, making implementation seamless and complete.” Luft said it was important for rail suppliers to use certified partners to mark and barcode their assets and components. “Put simply, there’s no point adding traceability markings to a product if they can’t be read,” he said. At AusRAIL PLUS, Trotec Laser will be showing visitors its latest SpeedMarker 700 laser workstation with 3D capability, which will also have a SpeedMark Vision positioning camera and an additional smart camera for barcode data verification. INSIGNIA Leading Australian lahelling, coding and marking supplier insignia provides a wide variety of products such as scanners, tablets, mobile computers (RF Guns) that allows capture and use of data accurately, quickly and easily. The company’s product specialist Craig Zammit said insignia boasted a wide range of options for marking in the rail industry, with each solution requiring a different application, for example adhesive thermal direct and thermal transfer labels, ink jet coding, CO2 and fibre Laser coding. “Once an item is labelled or marked, it needs
to have the capability to be read and data entered into asset tracking systems,” he said. “Being a GS1 certified partner provides organisations with the assurance that their methods are certified to industry standards, and would have the capability to be traced throughout the entire rail ecosystem, from manufacture to installation and use. “Non-compliant suppliers’ counterfeit products can lead to failed coding and traceability in the supply chain, so it’s important to partner with a knowledgeable, experienced partner like insignia who can guarantee delivery to industry specifications. “It is essential that you can not only apply a code to your assets and components, but that the code will endure the conditions they’re subjected to for the lifespan that is required. “We have had a long-standing relationship with GS1, and our staff are trained to provide coding and data capture services in alignment with GS1 standards.” Visitors at AusRAIL will be able to observe how to correctly identify, label, capture and trace assets and components and through the entire supply chain, with hands-on demonstrations of equipment by insignia’s experts. ZEBRA TECHNOLOGIES Zebra Technologies is a global business providing enterprise-grade rugged products for asset identification and tracking: applications that are robust and scalable across large organisations. Sales manager Colin Hughes said the company provided solutions for printing and encoding barcode labels and RFID (radiofrequency identification) tags. “We also supply the equipment required to read barcodes, RFID tags and direct part marking codes,” he said. Hughes said i-TRACE certification provided proof that the company was following best practice principles for standardising traceability and transparency of products and assets in the supply chain. “Using certified partners ensures compliance with current standards and up-to-date knowledge as these organisations know what they are doing,” he said. Zebra will display the latest best-of-breed technology in automatic identification solutions and asset tracking systems at the stand.
T w k a A f r e 8
Rail Industry Field Days 8-9th May 2024 Chullora Rail Precinct, Sydney We have turned 50! Join us at the 2024 RTAA Field Day to continue to connect, collaborate and celebrate this great milestone
The RTAA Rail Industry Field Days with Official Partner Sydney Trains is known as the biggest, most diverse and best outdoor event on the Australasian rail calendar. We look forward to welcoming all sectors in the rail industry to the largest outdoor rail event in the Southern Hemisphere on the 8th-9th May 2024, in Chullora, NSW.
Contact the RTAA Field Days Organiser + 612 9431 8600 rtaaﬁeldday@rtaa.org.au
Blending industrial leadership and digital technology Wabtec continues to provide a range of solutions to help manage today’s challenging transport and asset maintenance environments. Railroads worldwide face a common challenge: how to maximise the operational availability and reliability of rail assets while minimising costs. For every trip a locomotive makes, there are hundreds of variables which, if not maintained properly, can reduce fuel efficiency, shorten maintenance intervals, degrade asset life, or even bring the operation to a complete halt, resulting in costly network delays Wabtec combines industrial and service interruptions. Wabtec leadership with cutting-edge understands the critical importance of software and digital technologies. keeping rail assets in motion. Wabtec delivers the next generation industrial leadership with cutting-edge software of automated rolling stock and infrastructure and digital technologies to create an efficient, monitoring, inspection, and maintenance productive, and reliable transportation ecosystem. optimisation through its KinetiX Inspection Its innovative and efficient product portfolio and Technologies (KinetiX), which provides a range of digital intelligence solutions provides railroads wayside solutions facilitating the automated and with the efficiency needed to help industry and proactive monitoring of rolling stock condition. KinetiX produces data that can be analysed communities to achieve their sustainability goals. Wabtec Senior Regional Vice President, South and processed to assess rolling stock condition East Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Wendy ranging from full train inspection down to McMillan, says Wabtec’s portfolio of digital component level, enabling operators to improve asset performance, reduce maintenance costs and intelligence products is enabling greater capacity across all rail networks, allowing additional freight minimise operational delays. to move by rail as opposed to trucking, which is Rather than the traditional railway process of less efficient. relying on periodic inspections of locomotives and rail car assets to ensure optimal performance “Decarbonisation is a priority for Wabtec, and and safety of the fleet, KinetiX delivers the most our technologies provide a pathway to meeting our carbon reduction goal. Our digital intelligence comprehensive suite of AI-driven technologies. solutions are key to helping our customers meet It combines machine vision systems and line scan technology for high accuracy; Bayesian image their productivity and performance targets as well processing to create rich 3D models; acoustic as their ESG commitments,” she said. “Wabtec prides itself on leading the charge and vibration sensors to detect degradation and to create safer and more efficient rail networks changes; as well as infrared technology to identify thermal anomalies. across Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia, Wabtec’s technology has quickly established and digital intelligence plays a major role in that.” Another crucial offering in Wabtec’s digital a proven performance even in the harshest rail intelligence suite is a complete turnkey-hosted, environment. With around 400 installations back-office solution for I-ETMS-based Positive worldwide, KinetiX has become the industry Train Control (PTC) systems. This solution benchmark asset inspection and analytics solution provides all the components necessary for short for freight, heavy haul and transit applications. As the world’s foremost rail technology line and commuter railroads to implement and company, Wabtec has pioneered products maintain their PTC systems. and services for more than 150 years to drive An important component of the turnkey transformation and sustainability in the rail system is the One Help Desk — a single point of industry. The company combines decades of contact to answer questions, troubleshoot and
find solutions for issues within PTC systems. The technology helps to avoid the need to coordinate among multiple vendors to find and resolve issues. It also delivers safety and efficiency in the rail and transit industry. Wabtec Group Vice President – Digital Intelligence, Rajendra Jadhav, said the company’s PTC solution provided a robust path for customers to meet their project schedule and goals. “With the technology’s impressive track record in the rail industry, it helps advance the rail industry’s vital safety mission,” he said. Digital intelligence is also the foundation and cornerstone of Wabtec’s Digital Mine, a leading provider of innovative mining solutions. The company recently announced it had received a series of orders for 3500 of its new Generation 3 Collision Avoidance System (Gen 3 CAS) from three major global mining companies. The Gen 3 CAS offered a range of classleading and unique advanced capabilities, including predictive beam curving, contextbased definitive voice-based alerts, real-time self-test, superior accuracy via ultra high precision global navigation satellite systems, and the most advanced rules and intelligence engine in the industry. Wabtec Digital Mine’s Gen 3 CAS incorporates a brand new, cleaner, simpler user interface with context-based voice alerts that have been built using the latest human factor design., enabling operators to work without distraction and respond instantaneously to audible alerts. The new system will drive performance and safety improvements at customers’ mining operations, with the recent orders demonstrating Gen 3 CAS’s value and rapid market adoption in just a few months since it was launched to the market. “Wabtec is committed to bringing the best innovations to every customer we serve,” McMillan said. Visit Wabtec at stand 311.
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Zone in on reducing rail depot risks The UK-based depot safety specialist Zonegreen continues to develop highly sophisticated systems that protect rail industry personnel, without impeding depot operations or productivity. According to Zonegreen head of engineering Christian Fletcher, whilst it is common knowledge that yards and depots are dangerous places, it is possible to more accurately evaluate their safety requirements. “Reliability assessments are statistical processes for applying historical failure data to the proposed design and configuration of safety systems,” he said. The result is known as the Safety Integrity Level (SIL) and is defined as the relative risk reduction provided by the technology. In simple terms, SIL is a measurement of the performance required for a safety instrumented function to be appropriate. “In order to demonstrate compliance, the protection system needs to be assessed in full, and
both hardware and software must be developed in line with recommended techniques and measures from the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC),” Fletcher said. “Zonegreen’s flagship Depot Personnel Protection System (DPPS) has been SIL 2-certified. Its hardware and software has been independently assessed as satisfying the clauses of IEC61508 to the rigour and content required by a SIL2 integrity requirement.” DPPS is accompanied by Zonegreen’s advanced Depot Manager software, offering an overview of the entire protection system and complete traceability. It provides key information to make operations easier and quicker to implement: for example, identifying peak movement times, so additional focus can be placed on safety during these highest risk periods.
SEE IT IN ACTION DPPS is protecting workers at some of Australia’s most advanced rail depots, including Wulkuraka in Queensland, Packenham East in Victoria and Auburn, New South Wales. Zonegreen partners with Melbourne-based Andrew Engineering, which completes all Australasian DPPS installations, provides local support and integrated interlocking systems. The firms will be combining forces to exhibit the depot protection system at AusRAIL PLUS. Visitors to stand 116 will be able to see how staff are protected and movements are controlled via the RFID-operated road end panel and powered derailers, while also learning more about the benefits of the Depot Manager software. For more information, contact Andrew Engineering on +61 394 570 700, or visit www. zonegreen.co.uk
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Full suite of maintenance services Since 1954, Loram has provided some of the most advanced, productive and innovative railroad maintenance services and equipment around the world. Loram’s comprehensive solutions are designed to help its customers achieve operational excellence, extend rail and track asset life and enhance efficiency to new levels. RAIL GRINDING This includes rail grinding, the cornerstone of virtually every railroad maintenance program. It safely increases the usable life of the rail by reducing surface defects, shaping the rail head to maintain proper wheel rail interaction and control rail vertical and lateral wear. This provides railroads with an increase in fuel/energy savings, the ability to move larger loads and allow faster speeds. Loram’s rail grinding product offerings include equipment and services that serve heavy haul, urban and commuter railroads. As Loram Head of Business Development Tom Smith explains, before any grinding happens, Loram collects all the necessary data to maximise equipment productivity and quality. “This includes understanding the size of the railroad, rail specifications, tonnages, axle loads, current profile/surface conditions and the track time available for maintenance,” he said. “After the data is collected, Loram analyses the data sources relating to rail wear, rolling contact fatigue (RCF) and defect generation to help understand any trends that may cause different areas on the railroad that require more or less grinding. This then helps to create the overall grind program. “The collected data is used to determine the appropriate size and number of grinders needed to adequately maintain the system.” Loram offers multiple different grinders for
A Loram TracVac in operation.
different needs ranging from production rail grinders, specialty rail grinders and transit rail grinders. BELOW RAIL Loram focuses on using the latest technology available to plan for efficient ballast maintenance. Loram pairs GPR, LiDAR, high resolution video, GIS, track geometry, and other forms of data with advanced analytics to create a multifaceted track health report. With a complete picture of the ballast section and drainage characteristics, the root causes of poor track performance can be understood and appropriate maintenance solutions can be identified. “Loram utilises GPR technology to determine where shoulder ballast cleaning is needed by understanding the fouling level of the crib and both shoulders,” Smith said. “In areas where there are long track sections with fouling requiring remediation, the GPR data is used to prioritise and maximise maintenance efforts based on the capital plan and maintenance budgets available. “With the shoulders’ fouling level identified,
Loram’s high performance shoulder ballast cleaner is a productive solution for cleaning ballast.
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Loram is also able to determine how much the shoulder volume will be reduced during shoulder ballast cleaning. This information is combined with the initial shoulder profile to determine how much ballast needs to be dumped before or after cleaning to ensure the desired shoulder profile is restored.” Loram’s high performance shoulder ballast cleaner is a productive solution for cleaning ballast past the end of sleepers, regardless of how highly fouled it is, and discards the fines and fouled ballast from reusable ballast and restoring the reusable ballast to the shoulder. New research is quantifying how shoulder ballast cleaning reduces the fouling level of the crib section of the track along with the shoulders. “In track sections where the crib is moderately to highly fouled, the drainage improvement from shoulder ballast cleaning is shown to mitigate the effects of fouling accumulation over time, and allow rainwater that falls onto the track to carry fouling material from the crib out to the shoulder and then to the ditch,” Smith said. “These additional improvements in ballast life demonstrate an increased value in shoulder ballast cleaning compared to the understood improvements in drainage and track moisture reduction.” For targeted ballast maintenance, the Loram TracVac (LTV) is a productive machine of choice. With its powerful, rail-mounted specialty excavating machine, it can remove up to 28 cubic meters of material per hour using mechanical agitation and airflow. The compact footprint and industry-leading 2300 kg of downward force break through cemented material. A rotating nozzle can further break up material. The power and control make the
Y P I P E
versatile and compact LTV ideal for excavating specialty trackwork, trackside equipment and yard applications, with the ability to traverse and operate within restricted clearances, including tunnels, passenger platforms and bridges. FRICTION MANAGEMENT Adverse wheel and rail interaction pose one of the biggest threats to the life and performance of rail and rolling assets. Loram offers both gauge face and top of rail friction management solutions, with the modifier consumables available in biodegradable, synthetic, and water-based versions. Loram’s gauge face lubricants are designed for transit or heavy haul applications, designed to be pumpable in extreme temperatures, and are biodegradable. EcoCurve Heavy Haul is readily biodegradable, carries the European Ecolabel and is rated suitable to use near bodies of water. EcoCurve Trackside is also readily biodegradable and has found wide acceptance in the transit market worldwide.
Loram has introduced a family of modular tan si es for friction modifiers.
Rail King HL is inherently biodegradable and has high load carrying additives, best suited for heavy haul applications. “Our top-of-rail friction modifiers are specifically designed for wayside applications, help reduce noise, extend rail
and wheel life, and contribute to fuel/energy savings,” Smith said. TOR-Extend is a clean synthetic friction modifier that has a low evaporation rate, uses less material per application versus competitive products and has a carry distance of six to 10 kilometres in most applications. “Loram has also introduced a family of modular tank sizes from 95 litres/90kg to 2875 litres/725 kg in carbon steel or stainless-steel configurations,” Smith said. “These units are available for top of rail or gauge face applications and can be solar or AC/ DC powered. “Easy to maintain and install, the 95/90 tank size is the solution for low traffic areas like switching yards and industrial spurs and can also manage lower tonnage mainlines and transit systems. “The larger tank sizes are more suitable for heavier traffic mainline applications.” To learn more about Loram’s product offerings, please visit www.loram.com.au, and visit stand 232 at AusRAIL PLUS.
RAIL MAINTENANCE SERVICES CAN SUPPORT YOUR NEXT MAINTENANCE PROGRAM OR PROJECT
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Rail Maintenance Services Pty Ltd (RMS Rail), has been servicing the rail industry since 1971 and has established a reliable reputation for the hiring of wet and dry plant, equipment and professional services. RMS Rail takes pride in its commitment to health and safety, environment and quality. Underpinning the quality of all our works is our ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 45001 certified Integrated Management System. RMS is providing services in project site maintenance, operational management with approximately 100 dedicated staff and trained operators. RMS has a strong commitment to provide competent operators and is continuously investing in the development of our people. Mindful of the needs of our clients, our technical team scoured Australia and the world for the latest innovations in plant and equipment to provide our clients more efficient, cost and time saving solutions. We aim to have the highest skilled team with greatest specialised Road – Rail fleet in Australia.
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Transforming mobility for tomorrow Siemens Mobility will be presenting solutions for more sustainable transport at AusRAIL PLUS. As the trend toward urbanisation accelerates worldwide, cities are having to deal with the challenge of ever greater traffic volumes. It is estimated that by 2050, 70 per cent of the world’s population will live in cities and passenger movement will increase threefold, driving the demand for mobility solutions that are simpler, faster, and more flexible — while still reliable and affordable. Under the motto “Transform mobility for a better tomorrow”, Siemens Mobility will be presenting technologies and solutions for more sustainable, comfortable, and cost-effective rail transport at AusRAIL PLUS 2023. In essence, Siemens Mobility will be focusing on four main levers at AusRAIL: • LCC optimised rail infrastructure and rolling stock – helping optimise life cycle costs of customers’ rail business • Maximised network capacity – system availability and keeping rail systems always running • 100 per cent system availability – network capacity and getting the most of customers’ network • Optimised customer experience and processes – capacity utilisation and improving the passenger experience, optimising operations with the power of software 100 PER CENT SYSTEM AVAILABILITY Available at the Siemens Mobility stand will be information on an array of digital products, notably Railigent X, the company’s suite of applications that supports sustainability by enabling rail operators, maintainers, and asset owners to better understand data, analyse assets, and derive actions. Siemens Mobility Asia-Pacific digital service manager Lester Lim said he would be showcasing many of the digital applications of the software, including monitoring, analysis, and optimisation. “We help customers monitor the rail network’s health and condition, we have apps that analyse the reliability and investigate failures, and in terms of digital asset management, we monitor the performance and cost and then provide maintenance
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Backed by Railigent X, Siemens’ Vehicle Equipment Measurement Systems provide a range of automated inspections of rail vehicles to determine their serviceability and safety.
schedules to optimise the whole life cost for the projects,” he said. “It helps users access a curated portfolio of connected hardware and software, a powerful ecosystem of partners, and an extensive marketplace - our three-pillar approach to the challenges of digitalisation,” Lim said. “Every customer, every OEM, is moving to the digital space, and Xcelerator, backed by the Railigent X suite, facilitates co-creation and collaboration between partners, customers, developers and or course Siemens itself.” Siemens Mobility’s stand will be highly interactive, encouraging visitors to participate in activities, while combining the best of Siemens Mobility’s physical products with the digital world. It will also look at the many condition monitoring applications that the company has developed for the market. MAXIMISED NETWORK CAPACITY The rail technology leader will have on display a demo console for ETCS (European Train Control System) for visitors to experience and operate first hand. ETCS was originally developed for seamless train operation across national borders in
Europe, that relays continuous information between the train and a central rail management centre via radio system, trackside technology and on-board equipment. Present at the AusRAIL Plus stand will be Siemens Mobility’s project systems engineering head for Australia and New Zealand, Derick Hammond, who said the simulator on show will focus on the company’s solution for developing standards for ATO (automatic train operation) in conjunction with ETCS. “The technological foundation for highly automated operation is the solution ATO-overETCS,” he said. “ETCS ensures safe adherence to headways and monitors speed. ATO controls the train’s traction system and brakes. Control is transmitted via radio signals, and data is sent between the trains and the block control centre.” One of the main advantages of ATO-overETCS is the increase in rail network efficiency due to shorter headways. Information on the current traffic situation is continuously transmitted to the trains via radio. “More recently we’ve been doing ETCS level 2 as part of the Digital Systems program in NSW, ” Hammond said.
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“The simulator will show the benefits of using ETCS with the advantages of an ATO system in a mainline suburban network.” Hammond said increasing use of ETCS would also help solve the interoperability issues faced by Australian rail operators. OPTIMISED CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE AND PROCESSES Software solutions will be a game changer for operators to improve utilisation of resources (seat management, occupancy analytics, network/timetable and capacity planning), availability and interoperability. Siemens Mobility will have demonstrations of its Mobility as a Service (MaaS) platform to help passengers and operators from the first to last mile. LCC OPTIMISED RAIL INFRASTRUCTURE Helping optimise power solutions is important as the industry moves to help decarbonise the rail industry in Australia. Technical experts will be available to engage
Siemens prioritises capacity utilisation and improving the passenger experience, optimising operations with the power of software.
with attendees on solutions to help meet the customer needs. Another focus will be on the local capability aspect of Siemens Mobility’s Australian operations, with many local experts available to talk about their experiences and learnings with the technology. Diversity also takes centre stage, with the
company expected to be represented by a high number of women at the conference. Throughout the conference program, Siemens Mobility will have four speakers presenting on topics relating to interoperability, diversity, innovation and digitalisation. Visit Siemens Mobility at stand 221.
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How AI is revolutionising railways Leading rail manufacturer Alstom believes the continued adoption of advanced technologies and artificial intelligence is crucial to shaping the future of rail operations and maintenance. Since the first steam railway line opened in Melbourne in the mid-1800s, the Australian rail industry has undergone significant transformation. Rail has continuously evolved over the years, playing a pivotal role in shaping economies, meeting increasing transportation needs across the country, and linking people and places to keep Australia’s capital cities and regions connected. As rail networks continue to expand across Australia, prioritising safety and proactive risk assessment is critical. The industry must address challenges to guarantee the safety, dependability and effectiveness of services for countless passengers and freight customers every day. During the early days of rail, every aspect of maintaining rail infrastructure relied heavily on the physical labour of skilled workers. Track inspections required laborious hand-checking, and maintenance tasks involved hands-on repairs and replacements of components. Not only labour-intensive, manual processes also presented considerable challenges in achieving accuracy and efficiency. More recently, rail has embraced the rapidly evolving technological landscape, harnessing cutting-edge technologies and innovative approaches to enhance safety, dependability and the overall passenger experience. According to Alstom Australia and New Zealand Director of Services, Steven Harvey, the industry is experiencing a new era in rail where technological innovations and artificial intelligence are central to all operations and maintenance processes. “Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the driving force propelling the rail industry forward, safeguarding safety, optimising efficiency and steering towards greener and more sustainable transportation solutions,” he said. SMART MAINTENANCE THROUGH AI AND ROBOTICS The rail industry is undergoing rapid transformation thanks to digital technologies like AI and robotics. “Alstom is at the forefront of this innovation, leveraging technology to enhance the proactive servicing and maintenance of trams and trains. By incorporating leading technologies and embracing digitalisation, autonomous
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Alstom’s smart robot, based on ANYmal technology, predicts equipment failures and optimises maintenance schedules.
operations are now made possible through AI,” Harvey said. To enhance the effectiveness of train inspections, Alstom is leveraging a smart robot, aimed at predicting equipment failures and optimising maintenance schedules. This advanced robotic platform captures accurate data on the train’s health and integrates with Alstom’s bespoke AI solution. The Alstom smart robot, based on the ANYmal technology, automatically captures videos and images of rail assets using a fourlegged robot to move around the train, along the lateral side, roof and underbody of the carriage to gather inspection points. The videos and images are uploaded to the cloud through a secure network and inspected using AI and conventional image processing algorithms. Automated processes locate any potential issues, such as checking the alignment of parts and detecting the presence of panels, transmitting inspection results in real-time to guide maintenance teams to make timely repairs. “By seamlessly integrating artificial intelligence and robotics, we can better monitor the train’s condition. This translates to reduced downtime and heightened vehicle safety. With the application of technology, potential issues can be identified before they cause any disruptions to services,” Harvey said. The smart robot can proactively identify
small defects like absent screws which may not be visible to the naked eye, with early detection preventing breakdowns. Using 3D mapping of a maintenance depot for autonomous missions, it adopts a comprehensive detection method, navigating autonomously on predefined routes. The analysis covers dynamic detection of parts both onboard and in the undercarriage of the train, creating a detailed real-time report of results. “Artificial intelligence is a game changer in improving the speed and accuracy of track inspection, automating tasks and further ensuring safety so we can be one step ahead of any issues. The productivity gains are significant,” Harvey said. With complete integration into the Alstom IT environment, the smart robot is compatible with HealthHub, Alstom’s bespoke solution for predictive maintenance and fleet management. This innovative web-based platform analyses the data captured from railway systems: from trains, signalling and infrastructure. It offers a new approach to rail asset management through condition-based maintenance and provides greater efficiency in the overall maintenance process. The data is processed with algorithms created by Alstom’s data scientists and displayed on an interactive dashboard in a way that anyone can understand. Thanks to the massive volume of data
collected, indicators can be created, such as the Health Index, which can be viewed by the operator, maintainer, transport authorities or vehicle owner. These indicators reduce lifecycle costs by extending the remaining useful life of all types of rail equipment, saving up to 20 percent in preventive maintenance labour and 15 percent in materials consumption. “Predictive maintenance with artificial intelligence means we can better understand how failure occurs to prevent it from happening again in the future. We instantly know if something is wrong with the train, thanks to real-time monitoring, and our maintenance teams can take swift action,” Harvey said. OPTIMISING RESOURCE ALLOCATION By streamlining routine tasks and automating repetitive rail maintenance processes, the overall workload on maintenance staff is reduced. Employees can be reassigned and upskilled to other higher-level maintenance work requiring a greater depth of skill, allowing them to work on more complex projects and problem-solving. “Artificial intelligence is fuelling a shift in the way we manage our operations and the accuracy it delivers is undoubtedly a key driver for adoption in the rail industry,” Harvey said. “This not only enhances safety and reliability but also translates into substantial cost savings. We can free up valuable time, reduce unexpected disruptions and minimise time spent on emergency repairs.” Predictive maintenance can also lower waste consumption. Because potential issues can be identified before they lead to major failures, they can be addressed early, increasing the lifespan of equipment and reducing the need for frequent replacements. Replacement parts are only ordered when needed, minimising the need for excess inventory. EMBRACING SUSTAINABILITY IN MAINTENANCE AND SERVICING Travel by rail is highly energy-efficient compared to other modes of transport, producing fewer greenhouse gas emissions per passenger kilometre and carrying large numbers of people or freight in a single trip. The industry is facing a growing emphasis to adopt sustainable practices and technologies to reduce the sector’s environmental impact and promote more sustainable and efficient transportation systems. Alstom has a global commitment towards sustainable mobility and strongly advocates for the decarbonisation of transport to create more environmentally friendly transport
systems, with a global goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. Underpinning this commitment, and as sustainability becomes an important consideration for many businesses, predictive maintenance has been instrumental in supporting green mobility by tracking and reporting on reduced material consumption, downtime, and waste. Equipment can also be optimised for energy savings. When machines are well-maintained, they tend to operate more efficiently, which can result in lower energy consumption and, consequently, reduce material usage for energy production or the wear and tear on energyconsuming components. “We are continuously innovating and finding ways to make our trains more sustainable. Technology has been a significant factor in transforming the way routine servicing is carried out while reducing our impact on the environment,” Harvey said. “In future, the potential exists to expand our use of robotics for interior car body inspections, for example, to check the expiry dates of fire extinguishers onboard our vehicles. The possibilities that AI can deliver are endless,” Harvey said. ADVANCING RAIL WITH INNOVATION Expanding the application of AI and robotics in railway maintenance, Additive Manufacturing (AM), also known as 3D printing, has rapidly developed over the past few decades. This digital manufacturing technology allows for faster and more efficient product development, as changes can be quickly made at the prototype stage. Bringing innovation to the rail
industry through 3D printing represents a transformative leap in the design, production, and maintenance of railway components. Production times and costs are reduced by enabling the creation of intricate, customised parts with unprecedented precision and speed. By incorporating 3D printing into the manufacturing process, rolling stock spare parts can be produced on-demand, mitigating downtime due to equipment failures and therefore increasing operational efficiency. As a global initiative, Alstom has invested in a state-of-the-art 3D Printing Hub, located in Barcelona. With an in-house team of experts in this field, the purpose-built facility pioneered 3D printing at Alstom. To date, the team has designed and printed more than 258 different types of rolling stock parts, with a total of 13,978 pieces manufactured. The impact of this work has achieved significant time savings equivalent to weeks of work. This expertise is being leveraged in Australia, with Alstom recently launching its first 3D printing hub in Australia. With two cutting-edge 3D printers at the Dandenong manufacturing site in Melbourne, this technology is being used to support current projects such as the build of the Next Generation Trams. The project will include the design, building and maintenance of the new G Class trams, which are set to start rolling out from 2025. “In an industry that has stood the test of time, it’s exciting to see how the application of technology and artificial intelligence is making great advances in rail,” Harvey said. Visit Alstom at stand 312 in the exhibition hall for an interactive demonstration of the smart robot proactively identifying defects and issues.
By incorporating 3D printing into the manufacturing process, rolling stock spare parts can be produced on-demand.
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Martinus Rail in for the long haul Martinus has been winning rail industry contracts consistently for almost two decades, a testament to its professionalism and quality of work, making the company one of the most well-known names in the sector. And it’s now branching out into haulage services. Martinus Rail was awarded the supply, installation, and commissioning of track and overhead wiring contract for Link Alliance’s City Rail Link project in Auckland.
The leading full-service rail infrastructure business specialises in constructing and maintaining large-scale railways and intermodals across Australia, New Zealand, Chile and North America. Australian-owned and operated, Martinus applies its extensive civil and rail knowledge and project management skills to deliver infrastructure solutions for its clients across greenfield and brownfield projects. Starting in 2005 supplying rail products to the Australian railway market, today Martinus runs projects in four core countries, has 17 office locations, more than $2.7 billion worth of works in hand and more than 1500 railway experts. The Martinus name’s strong standing to the industry is proven through multi-million dollar contracts secured for the likes of the Murray Basin Rail Project, the Carmichael Rail Network in Queensland, the ForrestfieldAirport Link in WA, the City Rail Link (CRL) Britomart upgrades in New Zealand, and more recently some major packages of works for Inland Rail, including the Rail Corridor Package (RCP) and the Albury to Parkes (Albury to Ilabo and Stockinbingal to Parkes) enhancement projects. Chief executive officer and founder Treaven
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Martinus said the key to the company’s success and sustainable organic growth was its vertically integrated, self-delivery model. “Our growth strategy has always been to ensure we take measured and strategic steps to sustainable growth,” he said. “The growth over 18 years didn’t happen by luck. There were four key phases to our strategy: we focused first on product supply, then grew into rail services, followed by running projects, and now into major and mega projects. “This strategy has served Martinus well and has been key to our success entering into other core markets of NZ, Chile and North America. “Our vertically integrated model allows us to develop, build, own, operate and maintain railways, providing long-term solutions for our clients.” Treaven said that to maintain organic growth, the business had to be profitable in every project. SELFDELIVERY DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION “Our organic growth can be attributed to a decision made to double down on becoming the railway infrastructure experts and to drive self-delivery of our projects,” Treaven said.
“Martinus has the in-house capability for full turnkey project development of complex railway infrastructure, from feasibility and operational transformation, engineering management, through to project management, construction management, and seamless integration. “We provide clients a cost-effective and low-risk solution by streamlining engineering and construction processes. As a self-delivery contractor and project developer, we take full responsibility for the entire project, eliminating the need for multiple contractors and suppliers. This simplifies communication and coordination throughout the project lifecycle. “With our deep understanding of the rail industry and proactive approach, we detect and resolve potential issues ahead of time, ensuring minimal impact on project performance.” This self-delivery and almost one-stopshop ability is supported by investment in the largest privately owned portfolio of in-house specialist railway plant and equipment in Australia, which Martinus continues to invest year after year. Additionally, Martinus is accredited with ONRSR as a Rolling Stock Operator (RSO) across Australia and New Zealand, enabling it to operate rolling stock for the maintenance and construction of railway infrastructure using its experienced team of in-house train drivers. The model enables better risk management, with risk allocated to those best equipped to mitigate it; a single point of responsibility; collaboration and integration; and faster project delivery, as work teams are empowered to make the right decisions based on their expertise. PEOPLE POWER Treaven is in no doubt that much of the company’s success is due to its staff. “Together, we are building a world-class, high-performance organisation,” he said. “Regardless of where we work, Martinus has always been about people. “We hire motivated railway professionals and provide them with exciting career opportunities, support and professional development to ensure success. “Martinus firmly believes that we can only succeed when we unleash the potential within
Martinus locomotive and wagons delivered about 600,000 tonnes of ballast for the Carmichael Rail Network Project in Queensland.
each one of our employees. One great person is better than three good people. “We invest in the best, embrace diversity and support our people with initiatives that unlock their true potential. Our global infrastructure provides opportunities for our team across our offices internationally. “Our growth is underpinned by ensuring there is investment and support in the development of our people to ensure a longterm sustainable workforce of railway experts. “If our people grow, we grow.” Treaven said that within the 1500-strong employees, is a core team of 50 people who have been with the company for a long time and fostered the Martinus cultural DNA. “Examples are COO Ryan Baden, Growth General Manager Toby Briggs and Executive Consultant Craig Boothroyd, who have each grown to be vital members of our senior leadership team with more than 10 years each in the business,” he said. SUPPORTING LOCAL ECONOMIES Treaven said that as a privately-owned Australian business, Martinus understands the importance of supporting the economies it works in. “We are committed to ensuring that there is long lasting benefit to the projects we work on, and leaving a legacy long after they are complete, by ensuring that we re-invest in resources that support the growth of a thriving railway market. That commitment is not only the right way for us to do business but will be key to ongoing success in our global markets” he said.
BRANCHING INTO HAULAGE So what is next for Martinus? “Along with our continued global growth, we have strategically set up a team to focus on above rail customer haulage operations,” Treaven said. Martinus is uncommonly positioned in the Australian and international markets to offer the complete above and below rail solution by providing both rail infrastructure solutions (construction and operation) and aboverail haulage operations. This rail capability synergy allows each aspect to inform the other, delivering the most efficient, harmonious rail solution possible. In addition, the infrastructure construction, rail infrastructure management, terminal operations and the above-rail haulage solution can be amortised in a single agreement. This approach particularly supports emerging industries and new mining operations. Long term commitment to all commodities with new assets Martinus’ entry into the haulage market is predominantly based on the procurement of new rolling stock. Martinus is looking to build a legacy of operational excellence, delivering consistent, failure-free tonnes to port. Its commitment to all bulk commodities is evidenced through its willingness to invest in bespoke assets which best align to each haulage task to deliver the most efficient, cost-effective logistics solutions possible, as well achieving industry standard or better ESG outcomes. Competition to market Martinus’ belief is that the mining and heavy industry markets are hungry for a modern, flexible,
innovative, entrepreneurial haulage solutions. Unshackled by existing infrastructure and assets, the Martinus haulage solution is adaptable and fit for purpose. Modern, flexible approach to market Martinus is a modern, Australian-owned business, willing to explore contract options with its customers. It is not wedded to existing infrastructure or assets, allowing a free thinking, best solution approach in partnership with customers. Total supply chain provider Martinus’ logistics capabilities extend from pit to port. As a part of its full turnkey solution, the ability to include first mile, last mile, staging and storage solutions form part of the Martinus service offering. This provides customers with a single point of accountability across their total logistics supply chain. Existing rail haulage capability Martinus is best known as a leading Australian rail and infrastructure construction company. But to construct these projects, Martinus has operated and delivered millions of tonnes as a rail haulage operator. In the Carmichal Rail Project alone, 600,000 tonnes of ballast was delivered by rail from source to multiple locations across the project, on time and to plan. These assets remain on the books, ready to provide haulage services today. Martinus is a fully ONSA-accredited rail operator, right across Australia. >> Visit the team from Martinus at stand 420.
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Challenging the status quo Whether it’s focusing on family-first values, or prioritising diversity and inclusion in the workplace, NSW-based rail infrastructure maintenance provider Swietelsky Rail Australia is changing how its team members experience their workplace within the rail industry. Swietelsky Rail Australia (SRA) is focused on growth inclusive of all facets – service growth, client growth, and most importantly individual employee growth. Backing this up is an unwavering commitment to ensure that the business prioritises taking care of its staff: the people who take care of the business and deliver outcomes for clients. SRA Managing Director Anne Modderno tells Rail Express that it’s an operational imperative to ensure that the company creates and maintains a workplace that does more than put in place employee policies, but rather also builds business plans that place the wellbeing of team members at the centre. A key pillar of this shift in approach for the organisation was the introduction of the CHECK5 wellbeing and performance program in 2021. The CHECK5 program supports employees by identifying a causal factor category, allowing individuals to “check in” across the main categories that can impact on wellbeing – money, relationships, physical health, mental health, and work. “This type of employee wellbeing program expands on traditional practices and offers support to our team in an ongoing way, and in areas that are not just related to their role or workplace,” Modderno said. “Everybody talks about wanting to be safe and go home at the end of the day. But for our team, it’s more than that. “We want to ensure our team feels valued and respected, while also focusing on safe work practices.” This program has resulted in over 25 per cent of employees having accessed at least one of the support networks available, all taking action to make constructive change. Complementing the CHECK 5 wellbeing and performance program is employee access to the highest standard in comprehensive EAP services providing support for employees and their families. Underpinning this approach led to the team creating a new set of values earlier this year, where everyone – from management to those on the tools – had an equal voice to contribute and speak up about what they value individually, as a team and as part of the business. This resulted in the entire business being on the same page about what we value, which
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Ballast Cleaning supervisor Joel Brown (right) with plant mechanic Hannah Berthold onsite delivering ballast cleaning at Boggabri, NSW.
resulted in the values of Family, Integrity, Respect and Excellence being identified and embedded into everything they do. “We understand that working in the rail industry involves being away from home, and working long shifts in all kinds of locations. This can create stress on family life which reinforces how important it is to find the balance between being away and home; and creating the safe work environment that allows our staff to be 100 per cent present in their home life when away from work,” Modderno said. “What sets us apart from traditional rail industry roles is our transparent focus on family. Our core value of family means family first – always. Swietelsky family, second - always. We encourage and support each other, and we keep ourselves and our families safe.” SRA doesn’t just talk the talk on family values. It’s been certified as a Family Inclusive Workplace by Family Friendly Workplaces Australia. The company has joined more than 115 workplaces striving to reduce tension between work and family and help employees thrive both at home, and in the workplace. Being a certified Family Inclusive Workplace means that SRA policies and procedures have been assessed as exceeding the minimum national standards as well as comparing favourably to other employers. Some of the employee benefits SRA has introduced include access to an additional five days of leave per year, known internally as a ‘Balance Break’. These additional days are available to all staff to restore the balance between work and life as
it fluctuates throughout the year. The break could be anything from a mini-getaway with the family, some alone time on the golf course, minding the kids to give their partner some time, or a midweek romantic trip. In addition to the Balance Break, SRA also offers additional long service leave entitlements. The SRA team provide an additional accumulated day per year for all staff during their sixth to 10th year of working with SRA, to create an extra week for their long service leave when it becomes accessible. SRA also provides 12 weeks paid parental leave for all parents regardless of their primary or secondary carer status. Importantly for a male dominated workforce, SRA allows this leave to be taken flexibly, up to three years after baby joins the family. For example, fathers may choose to use a significant portion of their 12 weeks parental leave by transitioning to a four-day week for a year to provide one day of care for their child as they approach preschool age. This saves the family the cost of one day childcare a week and could support their partner transitioning back to work. “The research tells us that this flexibility provides the best foundation for mothers to transition back to the workforce,” Modderno said. “SRA allows access to paid parental leave from the first day of employment, and cover superannuation on all paid and unpaid parental leave.” SRA’s policy is inclusive of all family types such as single parents, same sex families, foster families, adoption or surrogacy, and also provides staff access to leave in event of still birth and
early pregnancy loss. The organisation also acknowledges the role grandparents play in the family unit and provide access to five days paid grandparental leave per grandchild. “In today’s world, access to genuine carers leave for unwell family members is needed more than ever. Our Family Care and Carer’s policy recognises this and aims to provide the flexibility our staff need. It also provides allowances for First Nations and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ kinship care needs,” Modderno said. SRA is an outcome-driven business and offers its team flexible working arrangements, as well as proactively supports hybrid working arrangements. Access to flexible hours allow staff to prioritise their family first so that they can be their best self at work. “We acknowledge that the work design for each role may sometimes restrict the level or type of flexibility that can be offered. We challenge ourselves to think outside the square where possible to ensure our flexible framework can be utilised by all our employees to the extent that they can still successfully complete the work of their role,” Modderno said. Examples include access to modified shift times to cover school drop off/pick up, a mix of from home and office work, flexibility to manage hours so that staff can care for relatives and attend or support others to attend medical appointments. SRA’s Domestic and Family Violence/Families in Crisis policy further demonstrates iits commitment to the safety of all employees. The policy includes access to an additional five days leave above the minimum national standard, steps for protection, and protocols and support for alleged or self-reported perpetrators. “At SRA we aim to provide a workplace environment for our staff that is unique to the industry and align with our values. We hope that our Family Friendly Workplace accreditation showcases to our staff and potential future talent that we’re more than just a workplace, and we live and breathe our values,” Modderno said. SRA Technical and Risk director Gary Holden said that alongside the direct employee focus, the business was also committed to ongoing Environmental, Social and Government (ESG) improvements. “Whilst there are always legislative ESG requirements, we use this as a baseline, as opposed to the only goals,” he said. “We also know that this commitment is important to many in our team, as it shows that we’re not just focused on the success of the company, but also on how we contribute in a wider sense.” The SRA ESG program is reviewed and tracked across four key areas of fairness, innovation,
ecology, and interaction. Some improvements of note include: • 100 per cent recycling of all oils, oil filters, rags, scrap metal and batteries • 78 per cent reduction in use of aerosols across all operations • 33 per cent First Nations People representation in Senior Leadership Team • 14 per cent female representation across the workforce (increased from 9 per cent at the start of the year) In addition to corporate level support provided to local community groups and organisations, SRA proactively encourages staff to participate in activities that benefit our local community and charities. It offers its employees one day paid leave per year to volunteer for a chosen charity or community initiative that provides positive social outcomes. Focusing on interaction and employee growth and development, this year, SRA has chosen to invest in the development of a training and competency framework that is tailored specifically to the needs of their team and business operations. Although implementation will be early next year, it hasn’t stopped other employee growth and professional development occurring in the meantime. Currently, 45 per cent of staff are undertaking further study in professional development courses such as project management, leadership, and business, and eight active trade apprentices or trainees currently work within the business. Specifically focusing on fairness and reconciliation, this year SRA started its reconciliation action plan journey in a proactive way. Consistent with the focus on quality outcomes, SRA has started its journey by first focusing on understanding their connection to country through indigenous art. In September 2023 its team held a connectionto- country art workshop with local indigenous artist, Saretta Fielding. Staff were educated on meanings of Indigenous art and storylines, and all painted their own stories using the symbols they learnt about.
Fielding then led a discussion about SRA’s values, business operations and their connection, to inspire her to develop a bespoke SRA artwork that represents the culture, story and connection to the land the team works within. SRA will continue to work with Fielding to create their own artwork, and then to discover and develop their reconciliation path and action plan. Originally established in Austria in 1936, Swietelsky has a long-established history, and the Australian arm of the business is committed to continuing to build on that knowledge and history. With locations across 19 countries, Swietelsky empowers each subsidiary organisation to recognise and respect the history and traditions of each culture, as well as the varying challenges, opportunities, and priorities within each national market. “We have the benefit of the technical knowledge and plant capabilities that we can leverage from our international operations, whilst also establishing our own culture unique to the team here in Australia,” Modderno said. “It is how we have been able to establish ourselves as one of the leading rail infrastructure maintenance providers in Australia, offering a range of unique services.” SRA is one of the only companies with ballast cleaning as a core activity in the country, and offers additional services including material handling, flash butt welding, resurfacing and “fence-to-fence” rail and civil maintenance. It owns a suite of state-of-the-art plant and machinery, with technical capabilities to ensure work is completed safely, and efficiently. Its choice of machinery allows the company to focus on sustainability when sourcing materials and promoting efficient transportation solutions. SRA never compromises on safety, and upholding the highest ethical standards is non-negotiable. To learn more about Swietelsky Rail Australia, or its career opportunities, head to its website: www.swietelsky.com.au Catch up with the team at AusRAIIL PLUS, at stands 547 and 548.
Saretta Fielding (centre) with her team members John and Christina standing with SRA staff proudly displaying their individual art stories.
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Equipment made specifically for rail Renowned for its innovative designs and equipment, all built in the factory at Ballarat in Victoria, Harrybilt Engineering continues to build on its reputation of providing highlyspecialised solutions to local and national rail customers, which it’s been doing for almost 40 years. Harrybilt’s typical customers perform maintenance on rail tracks. The business has continued to expand and now services the rail and utilities sector, along with general engineering projects. And as they say, the proof is in the pudding. Harrybilt finance and marketing manager Beth Martino will be on hand to show off equipment such as a lightweight tamper, the Mini Bullant sleeper handler, and a new rail threader. “The tamper has been designed by Harrybilt Engineering to efficiently compact ballast following replacement of railway sleepers on the rail networks,” Martino said.
zonegreen safe working solutions
The Harrybilt Mini Bullant.
“Our lightweight tamper No. 2 is suitable for 5-tonne to 10t excavators.” The renowned Mini Bullant has been described as a game-changer for handling
concrete sleepers with small 5t to 8t machines. It comes with an inbuilt rubber pad to reduce damage on sleepers. “The rail threader has a grab that grips under the head of the rail for lift,” Martino said. “The hardened point allows the threader to slide under the rail even through ballast, and the vertical and horizontal rollers provide low resistance support so the threader can slide along the rail providing lift of the rail on or off the sleeper. “This reduces manual handling and the OHS issues related to moving heavy rail. “After a few years on the track, some parts may need repairs or replacing but the main body is still up for more hard work. “Our customers often give these rail threaders a “birthday” and then send them back out on rail for around half the price of a new one.” Visit the Harrybilt booth at stand 334.
WHAT’S THE COST OF LIVING?
Renowned as the global market leading depot protection system, the SMART DPPS™ delivers physical protection from vehicle movements to rail depot staff whilst providing visual and audible warnings. The Smart DPPS™: • Protects staff and equipment • Ensures safe and controlled movement of rail vehicles into and out of the depot • Allows train maintenance operations to be conducted without endangering the safety of staff or damaging infrastructure It is: • Fully configurable, flexible and functional • Proven in use and installed globally • Capable of interfacing with third party equipment including signalling systems. • Adaptable to the safe requirements of the depot
Decarbonisation in rail
The PN team is committed to supporting Australia’s transition to a low carbon economy.
Getting the sums right on emission reductions in rail Pacific National has been accelerating its sustainability journey to be recognised as the leading provider of innovative, safe and sustainable rail freight solutions. To help more businesses drive down their greenhouse gas emissions, Australia’s largest rail freight company has unveiled a tool for businesses to help them reach reduction targets and improve carbon efficiency in the national supply chain. Pacific National (PN) Chief Strategy and Sustainability Officer Saskia Groen-in’t-Woud said the web-based tool allows customers to calculate their freight journey, input volumes and load type, and measure the environmental benefits of transporting by rail instead of road. “At Pacific National we are committed to driving carbon efficiency in the national supply chain and shifting more freight from trucks onto trains to reduce total transport emissions and deliver a better future for our people, communities, and customers,” Groen-in’t-Woud said. “We’re all on the journey together to reduce emissions, which is why we’ve designed this website tool to give our large customer base the power to run the sums and quickly see the benefits of choosing rail over road. “Our vision is to be Australia’s most trusted and respected logistics partner, which is why Pacific National is continuing to develop new
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products and rail service offerings to help our customers remain on track to achieve emissions reduction targets.” LOWER CARBON TRANSPORT SOLUTION Groen-in’t-Woud said the quickest and most efficient way to decarbonise the national supply chain was to support the haulage of more freight by trains. “Rail is more fuel-efficient than road freight and a ready-made low-emissions transport solution for Australia’s supply chain,” she said. “As Australia’s leading provider of longdistance rail freight services, we keenly appreciate how rail is the most sustainable way to move goods over long distances via land. “At a time when Australians want to improve road safety, lower traffic congestion and vehicle emissions, and reduce wear and tear on local and state roads, rail freight offers the ideal transport solution.” MORE FREIGHT ON RAIL As part of Pacific National’s focus on shifting more freight from road to rail, the company is a leading voice within the industry, promoting the benefits of rail to governments,
stakeholders and the community. “Rail freight transport has inherent benefits for the economy and community relative to road transport,” Groen-in’t-Woud said. “Comparatively, rail imposes far fewer costs to the community in terms of safety incidents, congestion, and road maintenance expense, while also resulting in lower carbon emissions. “Given this most Australians would unequivocally say they prefer real trains, not road trains, hauling bulk freight over large distances because it is safer, cheaper, and better for the environment than transporting millions of tonnes of freight by truck. “We need to shift more volumes on trains, not trucks.” Groen-in’t-Woud said the freight and logistics sector was increasingly turning to rail in the race to reduce emissions as it offers strong ESG performance. But while Australian governments support the idea of shifting more freight to rail, the reality is volumes moved on trains along key interstate transport corridors are low. “Today, a mere two per cent of freight is transported by trains between Sydney and
Melbourne – the busiest freight corridor by volume in the country,” Groen-in’t-Woud said. “The result is a conveyor belt of more than 700,000 B-double return truck trips each year on the Hume Highway.” Groen-in’t-Woud said Pacific National estimates increasing the rail freight share between Melbourne and Sydney to 50 per cent would help save multiple lives and $300 million in road accident costs on the Hume Highway each year, and reduce annual vehicle emissions along the highway by more than 400,000 tonnes. BENEFITS OF RAIL VERSUS ROAD FOR FREIGHT Every week, Pacific National runs 85 interstate intermodal services between Australia’s capital cities and key regional areas, supplying Australian households and businesses with groceries, consumer goods, manufacturing raw materials and finished products. “Compared to road freight transport, rail is significantly more fuel efficient and is a low emissions transport solution for the Australian supply chain – a tonne of freight moved a kilometre by rail produces one tonne of CO2e, while the equivalent transport task by road produces as much as four tonnes,” Groen-in’t-Woud said. “Rail freight transport also allows for reduced traffic congestion and better road safety outcomes, with fewer road trauma incidents in the nation’s transport network. “For example a double-stacked 1800-metre interstate freight train can haul more than 330 shipping containers, which is equivalent to approximately 180 truck trips.” PACIFIC NATIONAL ON TRACK TO REDUCE EMISSIONS Groen-in’t-Woud said Pacific National was on track with its ESG journey and the business strongly believed a sustainable future for Australia necessitates a sustainable national rail freight sector. “At Pacific National, we are fast-tracking our focus on ESG, to deliver a better future for our people, communities and customers, because we don’t want to leave the heavy lifting to others,” she said. “We are committed to supporting Australia’s transition to a low carbon economy and have been accelerating our sustainability journey to achieve reductions, but to achieve national targets we recognise we need to transform the national supply chain to abate carbon emissions. “As Australia’s largest private rail freight operator, we take our role in minimising the effects of climate change seriously and
continue to explore new pathways to reduce our emissions. “Our ESG strategy outlines the path for us to promote carbon efficiency throughout the country’s supply chain, build climate resilience into our extensive national operations and further reduce our own carbon footprint. “We have released our fourth Environment Social and governance (ESG) Report outlining our progress with our decarbonisation initiatives and affirming our commitment to minimise our environmental footprint, care for our people and manage the impact we have on the communities in which we operate. “We’ve embedded ESG into our business decision making model, set new targets aligned to the Australian Government’s Safeguard Mechanism as the country journeys towards net zero, and are supporting our customers in their sustainability journey.” ROAD TO RAIL STRATEGY Groen-in’t-Woud said Pacific National’s ‘Road to Rail’ strategy was a key pillar of the businesses’ growth strategy. “We’ve undertaken extensive work to understand our various customer segments and their needs, and in doing this we have built an in-depth understanding of the drivers of modal choice, allowing us to develop products like the Carbon Calculator and services to better fulfil those requirements,” she said. “By adopting a customer-centric approach, our aim is to make rail even more competitive and more attractive as a sustainable modal choice.” MOVING MORE INTERMODAL FREIGHT ON RAIL Groen-in’t-Woud said Pacific National continues to grow in the containerised freight market, holding a strong position in both interstate and regional intermodal operations and services. “Our freight customer base is both large and diverse, including daily rail haulage services for more than 300 freight businesses,” she said. “As containerised volumes in the nation’s freight and logistics sector continue to rapidly expand, many of our customers are on strong growth trajectories and desire more freight to be transported by rail to achieve a range of ESG performance targets. “Pacific National’s operational footprint, with some 90 terminals and depots across the mainland, and extensive rolling stock assets means we can provide the most comprehensive intermodal rail service offering in the country. “Our strategy is to build long term value for our people, customers, and shareholders.” Groen-in’t-Woud said Pacific National’s vision was to be a recognised ESG and sustainability
PN Chief Strategy and ustaina i ity fficer Saskia Groen-in’t-Woud.
leader in the rail freight industry, which is why the company has set an emissions reduction target, to reduce our environmental footprint and drive carbon efficiency in the supply chain. “While more freight off trucks and on trains will drive down net emissions across the national supply chain, we recognise operators in the rail sector also need to fast track efforts to decarbonise and future proof services,” she said. “At Pacific National we are committed to continuously improving the way in which we operate, including our approach to sustainability.” LOWER EMISSIONS IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN Groen-in’t-Woud said Australia could significantly reduce its emissions footprint simply by moving more freight on rail. “As a country we could reduce our emissions footprint overnight by transitioning greater volumes of freight from road to rail – and that’s simply using the rail infrastructure we currently have and diverting more containers from trucks to trains,” she said. “Moving a greater share of freight volumes from trucks to trains would immediately improve freight density, and deliver positive climate and road safety benefits. “Investing in our country’s rail infrastructure, including Inland Rail, will serve to support the growth and efficiency of many Australian businesses, while also reducing transport emissions across the supply chain. “It’s a win-win strategy and we are keen to be at the forefront, advocating for more freight on rail and investment in Australia’s rail network to support more businesses and keep the economy moving.” To calculate how rail compares to road freight operations visit pacificnational.com.au/ about/sustainability/calculator.
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Plant and equipment
Steely commitment to rail industry Molycop continues to be a pioneer in the development of grinding media and other rail products. Molycop is well and truly an Australian institution, with the company’s origins harking back to 1917, when it began as the Commonwealth Steel Company (Comsteel). Its pioneering work in grinding led to the development of the first heat-treated balls alloyed with molybdenum and copper, significantly improving wear performance. In 2011, under the ownership of OneSteel, all of the company’s grinding media manufacturing facilities merged into a common Molycop organisation, creating the largest grinding media company in the world. Today, after a slew of other acquisitions, Molycop is focused on the future, expanding on its current capacities to serve the increasing demand being generated by the various industries it serves. With cutting-edge manufacturing plants in Newcastle, NSW, and Perth, WA, Molycop Australia produces and supplies grinding media; fasteners; bolts; rail wheels and axles; track wheels and gear blanks. Committed to continuous improvement, the latest technology and sustainability, the company continues to shape the Australian mining, rail and manufacturing industries with forward-thinking solutions and lasting partnerships. Molycop chief executive Jim Anderson tells Rail Express that a main reason for the company’s success is its commitment to research, development and innovation. And for this to work, it needs the right people. “Retaining and building on our innovative roots is only made possible by investing in R&D and in our people – whether it be upskilling or attracting the industry’s brightest minds,” Anderson said. “Our partnerships with some of the world’s leading universities continues to give us a competitive edge in developing and retaining people, ensuring we equip them for the future. “The way we collaborate with our customers and stakeholders also drives this progress. “Our innovation strategies aim to provide fast, credible solutions to the social and fiscal challenges facing our customers. “Together we’re able to solve the big challenges our industries face, setting new benchmarks, evolving to market trends, and
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Rail wheels manufactured by Molycop.
ultimately delivering improved outcomes for our customers. “We’re greater than the sum of our parts.” Anderson said the company continually feels the need to evolve and be at the forefront of the industries in which we operate. “To best drive our future strategy, we have established a new business portfolio under the strength and reputation of the Molycop brand to emphasise our commitment to sustainability and innovation, with the extensive range of products and services that now form part of the company,” he said. “We developed the first Micro Alloy wheels over 25 years ago and these wheels are still the industry leader in wear and defect propagation performance,” he said. RAIL PRODUCTS Heavy haul rail wheels and axles Molycop manufactures the Comsteel range of forged and rolled railway wheels to international standards for all classes of rolling stock. “Our railway wheels have been precisely engineered to meet and exceed all performance expectations,” Anderson said. “We provide quality heavy haul wheels that meet the exacting requirements of the Australian heavy haul rail industry. We understand what is takes to meet the needs of demanding heavy haul applications. “We’ve been developing and innovating new products to satisfy the needs of the Australian rail and heavy haul industry since 1918. “We’ve also been instrumental in the development of the world’s heaviest railways, including creating wheel solutions capable of achieving 40+ tonne axle loads. We continue to invest in research and development to meet the future demands of the sector.” Molycop’s railway axles meet required performance specifications for freight, heavy haul, passenger and locomotive applications.
Passenger car wheels Molycop manufactures forged and rolled railway wheels to international standards for all passenger wheel configurations. “We rely on advanced in-house manufacturing capabilities to produce wheels of varying shapes and in sizes ranging from 650mm to 1250mm in diameter,” Anderson said. “A modern CAD/CAM Q-Form system links design flexibility to manufacturing by generating tooling for forging and rolling and machining programs for the CNC wheel machining centres.” TOWARDS THE FUTURE Molycop’s dedication to innovation extends to its global process optimisation and digital technology centre in Perth; and Molycop 360, an integrated logistics and waste management business, based in Cootamundra, NSW. It recently restructured its Waratah operations, placing the steelmaking division of its Waratah plant into “care and maintenance”. “We will continue to manufacture grinding media, rail wheels and other specialised steel products at Waratah,” Anderson said. “We will also expand investment in our core consumables product lines, as well as the Molycop 360 and Molycop Process Optimisation businesses.” The Molycop 360 business captures waste streams such as used grinding media, conveyor belts, and mining tyres to make new products. The Process Optimisation product is a suite of services that can be tailored to increase productivity, reduce overall cost and improve sustainability outcomes of operations. It involves real-time and point-in-time data capture and visualisation, sophisticated advanced control systems and a range of consulting services.
Innovating with purpose For more than 150 years, Wabtec’s innovations have helped drive the industry toward a more sustainable and clean future.
Plant and equipment
Keeping materials on the move Leading Australian materials handler Adaptalift has partnered with railcar moving specialists Trackmobile and Zephir. The materials handling and rail freight industries are dynamic, requiring innovation, dedication, and a strong commitment to safety and sustainability to stand out. This is exemplified by the partnership, which was established in May this year. It designates Adaptalift as the Australian rail freight distributor for the Trackmobile and Zephir brands, marking a new era in tailored railcar movement solutions. Established in 1979, Adaptalift has consolidated its position as Australia’s largest privately-owned materials handling company. With a history spanning four decades, Adaptalift has earned a reputation for its unwavering commitment to safety, innovation, and after-market support. The Trackmobile and Zephir brands are part of the Global Railcar Mover Group (GRMG). GRMG global sales and marketing director Nandan Mehta said Trackmobile had a 75-year legacy in railcar movers while Zephir’s history dated back to 1969. “The alliance is set to improve rail freight rolling stock movement in Australia,” he said. “This partnership represents not just a collaboration of two industry leaders, but a shared vision for the future of rail freight in Australia. “We recognise Adaptalift’s unwavering commitment to safety, sustainability, and customer satisfaction. Together we are poised to redefine excellence in rail operations and are excited to embark on this journey.” SAFETY AND COMPLIANCE Safety is paramount in the rail freight industry, and the Trackmobile and Zephir railcar movers are engineered for the purpose of ensuring the safe and efficient movement of rolling stock. In line with the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator requirements, the products adhere to stringent safety standards. This commitment to safety not only protects railway personnel, but also minimises the risk of accidents and derailments. ENVIRONMENTAL, SOCIAL AND GOVERNANCE The global shift towards sustainability is undeniable. Adaptalift chief executive Steve Taylor said the company was at the forefront of this transformation, offering for sale a suite of battery electric models alongside traditional internal combustion engines.
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Trackmobile sets the standard for railcar movement equipment that is efficient, cost-effective, safe, and easy to operate.
“These electric models contribute to reducing emissions and noise pollution in rail yards, depot and workshop environments, and industrial settings, aligning with global environmental goals,” he said. “Moreover, Trackmobile and Zephir railcar movers are designed to be environmentally friendly and fit-for-purpose in enclosed environments. “This feature not only reduces pollution but also provides a cleaner, healthier workplace for railway employees and neighbouring communities.” ADAPTABILITY Trackmobile and Zephir railcar movers exhibit remarkable adaptability, catering to a wide range of applications and uses. The bi-modal (rail/road) capabilities open the door to a multitude of benefits that result in significant efficiencies for operators. In depots and workshops, these vehicles facilitate safe and pollution-free rail vehicle movements in constrained environments. Their versatility extends to rail yards, where they excel in train marshalling and shunting operations. In industrial settings like steelworks and mining, ports, and bulk commodity handling such as grain and sugar cane, quarrying and extractive industries, these railcar movers prove indispensable. “This adaptability positions Adaptalift as a versatile solution provider capable of meeting diverse industry needs,” Taylor said. COMMITMENT TO THE MARKET Adaptalift’s commitment to the rail freight market in Australia is unwavering. With a
quantity of stock units on order, prospective customers can expect timely delivery. “Adaptalift provides flexible ownership options, allowing customers to choose between outright purchase and rental, ensuring accessibility for businesses of all sizes,” Taylor said. “To support this endeavour, Adaptalift has invested in specialist sales resources and conducted extensive OEM product training to provide customers with the highest level of expertise and professional guidance. “As the CEO, I am thrilled to offer safer, more sustainable, and adaptable rail freight solutions through our partnership with Trackmobile and Zephir. “Our combined expertise and dedication to the market will undoubtedly set new standards, ensuring that our customers receive the best products for their rail shunting needs. “This collaboration is a testament to our commitment to innovation and excellence.” Adaptalift’s commitment extends beyond sales. Taylor said the company’s extensive network of branches and service centres across Australia ensured that customers receive prompt and reliable after-sales service and support. “This commitment to customer satisfaction means that the railcar movers Adaptalift sells not only meet the highest standards at commissioning, but also provide a seamless and efficient experience throughout their service lifecycle,” Taylor said. “Adaptalift’s partnership with the Global Railcar Mover Group without a doubt marks a pivotal moment in the Australian rail freight industry.”
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I S S U E 10 | N O V E M B E R 2023
W W W. R A I L E X P R E S S . C O M . A U
RAIL EXPRESS is compulsory reading and a vital tool for all people working in and around the rail sector.
Pacific National’s carbon calculator helps businesses stay on track and reduce emissions PAGE 40
Rail Express is Australia’s authoritative business to business rail publication.
Innovations on show at AusRAIL PLUS 2023
The shift to autonomous condition monitoring
Rail Track Association celebrates half a century
Combining the resources of our respected journalism team and our unparalleled industry contacts and affiliations, Rail Express provides extensive, comprehensive and balanced coverage of breaking news and trends in key areas like infrastructure, investment, government policy, regulatory issues and technical innovation. Published both in print and digitally every month, Rail Express is the only publication to have both the official endorsement and active participation of the main railway associations in Australia and the broad support of the rail industry. The only way to ensure you get every copy of Rail Express is to subscribe today. Visit railexpress.com.au/subscribe.
A U S T RA L IA’ S L E A D IN G B U SINESS TO B U SINESS RAIL PU B LI LICATI CATI ON
Operations and maintenance
The shift to autonomous track condition monitoring While the use of remote condition monitoring in the rail industry has been a game-changer, it has its own set of challenges, most notably the reliance on cloud services and the subscription-based models associated with it. In an age of remarkable technological advancements, breakthroughs continue to reshape our perception of what’s possible. In the rail industry, Remote Condition Monitoring (RCM) has been a game-changer, enhancing efficiency and safety. However, like every great story, RCM presents challenges, most notably the reliance on cloud services and the associated subscription-based models. Imagine being tethered to a single vendor, contending with recurring fees, potential data breaches, and even the looming threat of vendor insolvency, leaving you with an obsolete system. The question then becomes, how can rail networks future-proof their investment? The answer lies in an innovative alternative. Enter MRD Rail Technologies. It has reimagined the very concept of condition monitoring and delivered what seems to be straight out of a rail operator’s dream – the TrackSense Autonomous RCM. As MRD managing director Rob Gersbach explains to Rail Express, the technology is designed to operate autonomously, able to function independently, without relying on external servers or network connections. So, what does this mean for rail operators? • Financial independence: No more hefty cloud-based subscriptions. A one-time investment in TrackSense offers substantial long-term savings • Breaking free from vendor chains: An independent system means no vendor lockins. Users have the liberty to switch, tweak, or overhaul systems without the haunting spectre of compatibility issues • Data security like never before: With data breaches making headlines, the promise of localised data storage ensures that critical data remains in users’ hands and is less vulnerable to external threats • Always on, always working: Internet disruptions? Cloud server crashes? With TrackSense, these become non-issues, ensuring an uninterrupted operation
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rac ense can e confi ured to monitor all railway assets.
• Real-time excellence: Reduced latency ensures that data processing is lightning fast, enabling immediate responses when needed • Customisation at its best: Unlike the one-size-fits-all approach, TrackSense allows operators to tailor solutions to their exact requirements. Further enhancing its versatility, TrackSense is compatible with the thousands of industry standard Modbus and 4-20mA sensors. “This compatibility means you can monitor virtually anything that can be attached to a sensor,” Gersbach said. Some of its current capabilities include: • Points machines • Batteries • Power supplies • Insulation • Relays
• Level crossings • Track circuits • Environmental factors “If you’ve already invested in a cloud logging solution and want to make it autonomous, it’s as simple as replacing your current logger with TrackSense and utilising the pre-existing sensors,” Gersbach said. “While TrackSense’s autonomous capabilities provide unmatched independence, it’s vital to recognise the benefits cloud-based RCM solutions also bring, particularly in remote access and monitoring. “As the rail technology landscape evolves, operators must discern their priorities and select what best aligns with their operations. With TrackSense Autonomous RCM, MRD Rail Technologies heralds a future where users hold true power.”
McConnell Dowell is creative construction. We successfully deliver complex rail infrastructure with our customers and the community. Scan the QR code to learn more about our rail capability or visit www.mcconnelldowell.com
Operations and maintenance
Brimble helps to toe the lines The team at Brimble are dedicated resurfacing experts, who have been involved in maintaining three distinct types of railway systems for generations.
METRO MASTERY Resurfacing a metro railway presents a unique set of challenges that demands precision and knowhow. In an urban environment, the primary hurdle is the need to conduct resurfacing operations in a swift and effective manner, in order to prevent disruptions to public transport schedules. “Metro systems often have limited alternate routes, making it crucial to minimise service disruptions and prioritise passenger safety throughout resurfacing projects,” David said. “Urban environments are also typically congested or compact, with restricted space to
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C R E D I T: L A C H L A N G A R D I N E R
Quality rail resurfacing operations are integral to maintaining the integrity and efficiency of Australia’s transport infrastructure. Resurfacing services ensure that railway lines remain smooth, safe, and efficient, whether the tracks form part of a metro system, interstate network, or heavy haul route. An as Brimble managing director David Brimble tells Rail Express, railway tracks endure a tremendous amount of wear and tear, due to factors such as the constant weight and friction caused by trains, and the effects of Australia’s harsh weather conditions. “Failure to adequately maintain railway lines can lead to a range of serious issues, including safety hazards, costly repairs, and significant disruptions to rail services,” he said. “At Brimble, we are proud to be Australia’s go-to rail resurfacing experts. Our specialist technicians make sure that tracks remain level and properly aligned, in order to reduce the risk of derailments, and extend the overall lifespan of a given railway system. “This results in more cost-effective and sustainable transport operations. We know that well-maintained railways facilitate the flow of goods and people across Australia, ultimately driving economic growth and connecting our communities.” The team at Brimble are well-placed to conduct rail resurfacing in a diverse range of operational environments. Their experts have proven experience in carrying out track maintenance work throughout Australia’s metro systems, interstate networks, and heavy haul routes. Each of these distinct railway lines presents different challenges and opportunities for the Brimble crew.
Brimble’s expert team ensures precision resurfacing for safe and efficient rai ays across ustra ia.
work around obstacles and existing infrastructure. For these reasons, carrying out resurfacing on metro lines requires meticulous planning to prevent interruptions to the community. “Fortunately, our team is backed by decades of experience within Australia’s metro systems. Many of our senior leaders at Brimble began their careers working with Sydney Trains, and we’re therefore very familiar with the demands of working within a metro system.” INTERSTATE INGENUITY Resurfacing an interstate railway line is another complex undertaking characterised by unique challenges. The sheer scale and distance covered by these networks presents logistical difficulties that require careful planning. Interstate railways often pass through diverse geographical terrain and changing climatic conditions, posing additional project management considerations. Track degradation occurs more rapidly on interstate railway lines, as axle loads are heavier and travelling speeds are faster. Coordinating with multiple stakeholders and region-specific authorities also adds layers of complexity when it comes to Australia’s interstate railways. Put together, these factors call for highperformance machines and highly qualified professionals who can provide resurfacing services with confidence and accuracy. “Brimble has a history of success when it comes to working on interstate railway lines, having worked with large networks such as
those operated by the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC),” David said. “We know that maintaining interstate lines is vital to ensuring uninterrupted freight and passenger connections throughout the country. Navigating the hurdles presented by interstate project work takes a multifaceted approach that our team is more than capable of managing.” HEAVY HAUL HARDINESS Resurfacing a heavy haul rail network presents a further set of formidable challenges that require an extensive skillset and a deep understanding of Australia’s transport industry. These networks, typically used for transporting massive loads in the mining and resources sector, withstand extreme wear and tear. Heavy, continuous traffic and the sheer weight of cargo can accelerate rail degradation; this means the most powerful machinery is needed to repair and resurface tracks. The remote and often harsh environments in which heavy haul rail networks operate further complicate the process, necessitating detailed logistical planning for materials, equipment, and workforce access. Coordinating with industrial clients and decreasing downtime is also crucial, as even brief interruptions can have significant economic ramifications. “The focus and proficiency required to resurface heavy haul rail networks calls for experienced professionals who can work well under pressure,” David said. “We appreciate that in this environment, lost
time is lost money, and we know this can have knock-on effects for our country’s economy. “At Brimble, resurfacing is our core service capability. We believe this dedicated knowledge makes us the best choice for resurfacing work throughout Australia’s heavy haul networks, and we’re proud to work with some of the most recognised names in global mining and resources.” PEOPLE FIRST In any project environment, Brimble retains an unwavering commitment to operational safety. Whether working within metro systems, interstate railways, or heavy haul networks, Brimble places a spotlight on the wellbeing of those crews, clients, and communities involved. “Safety culture is embedded in every facet of our operations,” David said. “We invest in ongoing training and development for our employees, ensuring that they are well-versed in industry best practices and the latest safety protocols. Rigorous safety assessments and proactive risk management are standard procedures in all our projects. “Every rail resurfacing project we undertake is
C R E D I T: B L A K E D AV I E S
Brimble track machine TMS400 elevating the Sydney Trains Network next to the historic Old Como Bridge at George’s River.
executed with the utmost care and attention to detail, meaning that our clients can trust us to deliver results without compromise. Safety is our top priority, and it’s a focal point we emphasise throughout each project we undertake.” Maintaining a client-centric approach is also at the heart of Brimble’s company ethos. Brimble crews are committed to understanding their clients’ objectives, expectations, and operational constraints in any environment.
This commitment is carried through each phase of a given project, from initial planning stages, through to execution and beyond. “We recognise that each rail resurfacing project is unique, and we tailor our solutions to suit our clients’ specific requirements,” David said. “We strive to exceed expectations, and our goal is to build strong, lasting partnerships based on trust, reliability, and a real determination to enhance Australia’s rail sector.”
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Major projects and infrastructure
Driving Australian metro success This November, MTR celebrates 15 years of operating in Australia and helping clients to deliver great outcomes for passengers and communities. MTR began Australian operations back in 2009 when the consortium it leads, Metro Trains Melbourne, won the Melbourne Trains franchise. From that point MTR has continued to share its global metro knowledge on operations and maintenance, building and opening new lines based on its Rail plus Property model throughout Australia and New Zealand. MELBOURNE Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) plays an integral part in the lives of millions of Melbournians, operating 1000km of track and 221 metropolitan stations. More than 7000 employees deliver more than 60,000 train services every month. MTM chief executive Raymond O’Flaherty said the business was focussed on operating a long-term sustainable railway network that worked productively with the Victorian Government to ensure a positive legacy for future generations. “We are also proud of the progress we have made on having greater gender diversity across every part of the organisation and encouraging more women into a traditionally male dominated industry,” he said. “We now have more than 550 female train drivers in our team of 1300 drivers. ‘Passenger experience has also grown to over 75 per cent and on-time performance has significantly risen since taking over the franchise, from the mid-80 per cent range to over 92 per cent.” O’Flaherty said the Victorian Government’s Big Build program had been transformational for the metropolitan network. “MTM is proud to have partnered with the Victorian Government to realise significant improvement for our passengers who now experience a more modern network with new trains and enhanced timetables. “The work is not done yet, with testing now underway on the new Metro Tunnel which will open for passengers in 2025.” SYDNEY MTR began its Sydney journey when it partnered with Sydney Metro to deliver the first automated metro service in Australia, Sydney Metro Northwest. MTR leads the consortium that financed and built the PPP (public-private partnership)
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MTR staff at Waterloo station in NSW.
MTR has helped Melbourne Trains Metro to realise si nificant improvement for the passen ers ho use the new assets, trains and timetables.
project, as well as the Sydney Metro Trains consortium which delivers the operations and maintenance concession. Metro Trains Sydney (MTS) chief executive Daniel Williams said that turn-up-and-go automated trains were a game-changer for Sydney, and passenger experience scoring reflected this trend. “MTS achieves over 98 per cent satisfaction which is the highest in Australia for any mode of transport,” he said. When MTS services were introduced in 2019, they delivered global benchmark performance standards of 99 per cent on-time performance. “This level of performance is absolutely world class,” Williams said. “MTS is now looking forward to the opening of the Sydney Metro City section next year
through Sydney CBD, and then later to the South West. “We continue to work closely with Sydney Metro and partners to deliver world class transport to heart of Sydney and look forward to the transformation it will achieve.” CONSTRUCTION MTR is currently delivering the new trains and systems package for Sydney Metro City and Southwest. MTR project director Dono Tong said the company was proud to be partnering with Sydney Metro to deliver the 23 new trains, CBTC, communications and PSD systems for the project, as well as the overall system integration. “We have built a large local team in Australia
and are able to use our expertise in integrating different OEMs with existing networks to deliver complex projects,” he said. “Globally MTR has opened eight automated metro lines in the past five years and this knowledge is directly fed into achieving successful outcomes.” ADVISORY Global expertise is something that MTR prides itself on and it actively participates in a variety of Rail plus Property projects. MTR senior manager Gordon Baulch said that MTR regular engages with clients at all stages of a project. “Across Australia and New Zealand, MTR are currently providing strategic advice for line openings, Rail plus Property development, operations, maintenance, rolling stock and systems integration. “Having direct access into 50,000 global resources is incredibly powerful for our clients and MTR is able to help improve outcomes for passengers and communities.”
MTR partnered with Sydney Metro to de iver the first automated metro service in Australia, Sydney Metro Northwest.
WHAT’S NEXT The future looks bright for MTR in Australia and New Zealand with governments continuing to deliver Rail plus Property projects. MTR Australian chief executive Raymond Yuen said that the business was excited for the future of Rail and Property in the ANZ region. “Helping clients realise their vision is a key outcome for MTR and we achieve this because of our deep knowledge of metro
operations, maintenance, line openings and property development,” he said. “Our global networks continuously share knowledge and learning which we transfer directly into our Australian operations and to our clients. “MTR is so proud of the improvements we have been able to deliver to passengers and communities in Australia. “We look forward to partnering long into the future with our valued clients and enabling their visions.”
Major projects and infrastructure
Bringing mass transit experience to Australian rail networks In a global context of ever-growing needs and expectations for excellence in public transport, RATP Group’s international arm, RATP Dev, prides itself on being a trusted partner for 780 cities around the world. RATP Dev boasts expertise in delivering, managing, operating, and maintaining complex mass transit networks. Through tailor-made and high-quality solutions, the company also supports the cities in welcoming large-scale global events and in making them successful, ensuring seamless service. Congestion, pollution, crowding, getting around quickly and easily are top challenges to tackle to improve the daily lives of millions of passengers. With 68 per cent of the world’s population predicted to live in cities in 2050, compared to just 55 per cent in 2020, cutting-edge mobility solutions are needed now more than ever. RATP Dev dedicates every day to better city living with highly efficient, safe, innovative, accessible, and sustainable mobility services. Relying on more than 45 years of experience in rail mass transit of RATP Group, its international subsidiary has a rich history of innovation – instrumental in creating world-class engineering solutions, operating high-capacity fully automated metro lines, and transforming urban transportation across the globe. AN EXPERIENCED LONGTERM PARTNER FOR AUSTRALIA’S URBAN TRANSIT NETWORKS Australia’s S$155 billion investment in rail infrastructure over the next decade aligns with RATP Dev’s own aspirations. RATP Dev Australia managing director Denis Masure tells Rail Express that, with proven and reliable expertise in the operation of fully automated metro systems and complex rail projects with the highest performance service and commitment to sustainability, the company is ready to contribute to Australia’s urban development toward a more sustainable future. “We do this notably by helping to increase the urban density around attractive new stations thanks to safe, reliable, comfortable and efficient services,” he said. RATP Dev’s vision is clear: metro stations are
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going well beyond their primary function of passenger transport, they offer them a brandnew experience as they are becoming new poles of centrality around which denser and more sustainable housing is built, with less use of individual cars and the opportunity of easy access to daily-life amenities on foot. “Sustainability is a core pillar of our vision,” Masure said. “As cities strive to reduce their carbon footprint, we are committed to being a part of the solution and offer a reliable innovative approach acquired through thorough partnerships with major industrial players of the transportation sector. “Thanks to our capacity to integrate, operate and maintain cutting-edge technologies like power-recycling train brakes, green materials, low-energy solutions into stations and more, we’re committed to contributing to sustainable transportation infrastructure into the urban fabric.” RATP Dev’s Australian branch is set to embark on three groundbreaking mobility solutions – the operation and maintenance of the Sydney Metro-Western Sydney Airport line with the Parklife Metro Consortium, and the tenders for two city-changer projects: the Melbourne Suburban Rail Loop and Sydney Metro West line. “Thanks to a very interesting combination of two key capabilities, delivering complex rail projects and managing operations and maintenance, RATP Dev brings to the Australian market a safe pair of hands that have proven they can deliver reliable operations, best-inclass customer service, and industry-leading asset management solutions for complex rail systems, especially fully automated metro lines,” Masure said. Furthermore, each new metro line will create several hundreds of persistent jobs to manage train operations, help customer journey in stations and trains, and in maintenance for all the new assets (trains, signalling, communication systems, tracks, traction power, mechanical electrical and plumbing).
RATP Dev brings a proven experience in mobilising and training local workforce thanks to international expertise mobilisation. SERVICING LARGESCALE EVENTS RATP Group has accumulated an extensive experience and track record in providing exceptional service performance during intense periods with extremely high passenger volumes. The most prominent illustration is the company’s careful preparation to help support cities in turning large-scale events into a success. This expertise requires extreme technical investment and expert mobilisation to meet the highest requirements. As RATP Dev Asia-Pacific chief executive officer Henri Pottier says, RATP Dev’s involvement in major global events has equipped it with the ability to handle complexity and scale in very demanding environment. “We have the dynamic blend of expertise, innovation, and adaptability needed to ensure success in welcoming visitors and seamlessly and safely connecting them at these important global events,” he said. Whether for the FIFA World Cups in Paris in 1998, in South Africa in 2010, in Qatar in 2022, the Rugby World Cup this October in Paris and of course the Olympic and Paralympic Games that will be held in Paris in July and August 2024, the group has proven its capabilities in hosting monumental events while ensuring to offer a continuous, seamless journey for all customers and visitors. “These top-of-the-class events bring together very diverse and sometimes quite influential passengers requiring the best reception and transportation experience,” Pottier said. “One top priority of RATP Dev is mobility for all. True accessibility is a must-have and goes well beyond mere compliance: it’s about creating an inclusive experience for every passenger. “In that regard, the 15-year contract to operate and maintain the Sydney MetroWestern Sydney Airport Line is a perfect
RATP is working to extend the fully automated metro Line 14 in Paris.
opportunity to showcase everyday excellence in operations and the latest customer innovations to maximise the satisfaction of international travellers exhausted after a long flight.” Major events are also generally the opportunity to launch new strategic transportation projects. RATP Group proved to be a reliable partner in delivering and operating new transport systems from the very early stages of operation, with an intense volume of highly demanding passengers. The first example was the launch of the fully automated metro Line 14 in Paris, RATP Group’s historic network, ahead of the 1998 FIFA World Cup. Today, the company is working to extend Line 14 South to fulfil the monumental task of connecting Stade de France (Saint-Denis Pleyel station) to Paris Orly international airport ahead of the forthcoming Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024, reaffirming its role as a trustworthy transportation supporter for global events. And although Line 14 boasts a 99 per cent passenger satisfaction rate, the Group is still seeking innovation applications based on artificial intelligence (AI) to streamline traffic, which measures density on platforms and on-board trains, relaying this information to passengers who can base their movements on this data. “During the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, RATP Dev not only catered to the daily commuting needs of residents, but also attracted tourists and supported seamless movement,” Pottier said. “This contributed to the region’s economic growth, accessibility, and access to cultural hubs and business centres, thanks to the development of the high-speed Gautrain that is fully integrated into a network of buses and minibuses to address the pressing need for efficient, safe, and reliable public transportation in the South African province of Gauteng.” RATP Dev’s involvement was paramount to
the seamless and smooth movement of 18.2 million football fans in Qatar during the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Through careful planning and advanced crisis mitigation strategies – including more than 5000 additional staff, 92,000 hours of training, 9000 of stress testing, and 450 hours of crisis exercise practice – 99.9 per cent regularity of services was achieved, with a 99.8 per cent punctuality rate, and a 99.8 per cent customer satisfaction rate, with no incidents, ensuring a seamless mobility experience. “Drawing from our experience at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha, where 70 out of 80 safety experts onsite were mobilised from RATP Group, we recognise the pivotal role of expertise in the execution of massive events,” Masure said. “Our 24/7 activated crisis unit and dedicated event management plans, developed through years of experiences and managed by very experienced operational managers, demonstrates our ability to navigate complexities with precision.” The 2023 Rugby World Cup that just ended in Paris showcased this operational achievement, where RATP Group served as the RWC’s Official Supporter, and seamlessly connected fans with Stade de France through Metro Line 12 and Line 13, Tram Line 8 and ensured also smooth interchange with Commuter Train RER B. “Global large-scale events are enablers of high requirements and thoroughness, allowing RATP Group to export its excellence in mass transit,” Pottier said. “As we take steps toward shaping the future of Sydney Metro–Western Sydney Airport with our delivery partners and position ourselves on Sydney Metro West and the Suburban Rail Loop, RATP Dev’s objective is to mobilise very high-level resources which have contributed first hand to the successful and globally visible delivery and performant commissioning of our own complex rail projects in Paris and overseas. This is our ambition for Australia.”
RATP DEV IN AUSTRALIA • RATP Dev offers its 30-year experience in driverless metro and resources to Australia • In December 2022, RATP Dev was awarded a major contract to operate and maintain the Sydney Metro–Western Sydney Airport Line for 15 years, as part of the Parklife Metro Consortium • ·RATP Dev Australia supports cities to challenge the statu quo and improve existing solutions for the commissioining of major new rail projects • RATP Dev Australia develops cuttingedge solutions to tackle many of the modern urban transport challenges, through a combination of reducing emissions, finding new innovative ways for mobility and excellence in operations and maintenance • The company delivers high-quality services, making metro stations new attraction centres for neighbourhoods, and contributes to the success of a new model of urban development around metro lines. RATP GROUP IN A NUTSHELL • The world’s third largest urban transport operator and a trusted partner of more than 780 cities and regions in France and in 15 countries • 71,000 employees • 21 metro lines 100 per cent automatic or semi-automatic planned for operation • 4 heavy commuter rail lines • 25 tram lines • 11,300 buses in circulation on our networks • Relies on the latest developments of the Urbanopolis innovation lab network, to keep cities moving forward by sharing and promoting innovative ideas with those who inhabit them.
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Maintaining the drive to lift national productivity Drop by the RISSB stand at AusRAIL PLUS and help it commemorate its 20th anniversary. This year RISSB is celebrating two decades of serving the rail industry. Starting as the Code Management Company in 2003, becoming RISSB in 2007 and then separating from the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) in 2015, RISSB has become an integral and critical part of the sector. Renowned for its Standards (RISSB is the only Standards Development Organisation recognised by Standards Australia to write Australian Standards for the rail industry), RISSB now has a library of 255 products (Standards, Codes of Practice, Guidelines and Rules) as well as a suite of safety and data tools including the Australian Rail Risk Model (ARRM), the Culture Hub Survey, and the new National Rolling Stock Register. In recent years RISSB has expanded its range of member services to include MasterClass webinars, training courses, the Horizons Program and the Technology and Innovation Conference, to add to the wellknown RISSB Annual Safety Conference. Over the past year, RISSB has also contributed significantly to the drive for national reform in rail, through focus areas of the National Rail Action Plan (NRAP) and its role in both the harmonisation and interoperability agendas. RISSB’s involvement helps drive high-level outcomes such as productivity, efficiency, and safety, as well as the Governments’ priorities such as local manufacturing and decarbonisation. Over three years, RISSB is developing 12 Standards for NRAP. By June 30 this year, eight had been completed with the remaining four to be developed in 2023/24. Whilst there have been many improvements introduced into the Australian rail industry through the development and adoption of RISSB’s standards and other products over a number of years, continued innovation is required in order for rail to improve its safety, productivity and sustainability outcomes. That’s why this year’s RISSB Work Plan has been developed with a number of key changes being introduced into the development process, including extensive engagement with
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Catch up with RISSB CEO Damien White at AusRAIL PLUS.
industry and government, outcomes from major incidents and ONRSR’s priorities. RISSB is excited to showcase its products, safety tools, programs and services it offers members and the rail industry more broadly, at the AusRAIL PLUS conference. RISSB’s booth this year has been designed to maximise the opportunity for crossindustry collaboration, providing a space for conversations with key members of the industry about safety, training and RISSB products. Key staff will be in attendance to discuss some of the changes to product priorities and planning processes. RISSB will be highlighting the significant achievements and contributions they have made to safety and productivity, alongside industry, since it was established. There will also be presentations about ARRM, information about RISSB’s online training (Learning Express) and its classroom courses, such as the Undertake a Derailment Course (which is now a nationally recognised unit of competency) , as well as RISSB’s Horizons Program. RISSB chief executive Damien White said industry members were incited to visit
the AusRAIL stand to “see what we do, ask questions and celebrate our 20th anniversary, and note the contribution RISSB has made and will continue to make to the rail industry in Australia and New Zealand”. “The foundation of the Work Plan has been a comprehensive analysis of various scenarios to ensure the plan is robust in a number and combination of potential outcomes,” he added. “RISSB will be working more closely with stakeholders, including Government, so that RISSB’s annual Work Plan will focus on Industry’s most pressing issues, and be informed by a range of industry inputs, and be able to quantify benefits. “We will also have an increased focus on product adoption and benefit realisation by assisting industry with the implementation of RISSB’s products”. RISSB chair Deborah Spring noted that RISSB is forging a way forward that takes into account a political environment providing increased attention on rail interoperability and harmonisation to drive national productivity, decarbonisation and local manufacturing. “RISSB is well positioned to be an integral part of this work,” she said.
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Four pillars to help grow the rail industry The Permanent Way Institution of New South Wales is far more than just an organisation; it has a rich legacy, serving as a foundational pillar in the rail industry for 49 years. Established with a vision to propel the sector into new dimensions, we are steadfastly committed to fostering growth and innovation. Built on the four indispensable pillars of Community, Pathways, Knowledge, and Resilience, our aim has always been to create an environment that sustains and elevates every aspect of the rail community. Our enduring dedication underlines every initiative, event, and program we undertake, ensuring that the rail industry continues to thrive. COMMUNITY Community is more than a catchphrase in our lexicon; it represents a vibrant tapestry that ties together everyone involved in rail in NSW. At PWI NSW, we proactively nurture this sense of community through our myriad of events, expert forums, and social meetups. These platforms serve dual purposes—they allow our members to connect while simultaneously becoming forums for collaboration. Here, ideas are not just shared; they’re generated. PATHWAYS The rail industry’s future lies in the hands of our younger and increasingly diverse workforce. In recognising this, PWI NSW is an invaluable resource for burgeoning talent. From mentorship programs to scholarships and specialised training, we offer a multitude of avenues for career growth. The rail industry, with roles from engineering to operations and project management, presents an expansive landscape for everyone to find their niche. KNOWLEDGE Knowledge is the cornerstone of any thriving industry, and rail is no exception. PWI NSW takes this principle to heart, consistently focusing on creating and disseminating a vast knowledge base. Whether understanding the evolving regulatory landscape or grappling with the complexities of track design, we offer educational tools and workshops.
Our core aim is to act as a hub of information and expertise that propels individual and collective growth. RESILIENCE Building a resilient rail network is imperative in today’s fast-paced world, where change is the only constant. PWI NSW is at the forefront of innovation and is committed to pioneering initiatives that fortify our sector’s resilience. By adopting cutting-edge technologies and best practices, we’re sustaining and future-proofing our existing network for the challenges ahead. UPCOMING EVENTS Please mark your calendars for our momentous annual conference, slated to be held in the charming city of Orange on October 13. This year, we’re taking a thematic journey, “Back to Basics 2.0,” focusing on how regional teams revolutionise rail maintenance. Comprising enlightening talks and hands-on workshops, this is an event you won’t want to miss. It’s not just a meeting of minds but a union of purpose to elevate rail standards across the board. AUSRAIL PLUS This year, PWI NSW is poised to make a significant impact at the AusRAIL PLUS conference , particularly on November 15, when it will hold specialised technical sessions. As a driving force in modernising rail infrastructure and operations, PWI NSW promises to deliver thought-provoking discussions and pioneering solutions. One of the event’s must-attend sessions will be led by esteemed keynote speakers representing PWI NSW. The presentation aims to delve into the transformative role of data
Mark Harris, president, PWI NSW
analytics in rail maintenance. Data analytics is emerging as a linchpin for proactive maintenance strategies in a sector where even marginal gains can equate to substantial financial savings and operational efficiency. Moreover, the speakers will focus on “possession productivity,” maximising output against time. Given the constrained time frames usually available for rail maintenance, the insights offered will be invaluable for organisations striving to optimise work within these windows. The third key topic on the agenda concerns rail integrity and management, where PWI NSW has carved a reputation for thought leadership. Take your chance to engage with the committee members of PWI NSW, key stakeholders in NSW’s expansive rail network. Their insights provide a direct pipeline to industry best practices and emerging trends. As a special incentive, free personal memberships will be offered exclusively at its AusRAIL stand—a compelling reason to enrich your professional network and become part of this influential community. We look forward to seeing you there! www.pwinsw.org.au
PWI Committee members at last year’s AusRAIL conference.
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RTAA has rail industry’s back It’s been 50 years since an organisation was formed to help support rail infrastucture.
Jonathon Barnes, president, Rail Track Association Australia
2023 is an important milestone for the RTAA, as we celebrate our 50th anniversary. But we have not always been known as the RTAA. Back in 1943 a group of interested parties representing the timber industry came together to host the first sleeper conference, where agreement was reached that a regular event would be to the industry’s benefit. And to help maintain interest between conferences they agreed that an organisation should be formed. Thus was born the Rail Sleeper Association of Australia, under inaugural president Brookes C Wilson. In those early years the organisation grew rapidly, soon counting membership across all the operators in the countries and many of the suppliers, enabling the hosting of a string of successful sleeper conferences. As the organisation grew and our purview expanded, it was decided that the name should change to reflect our growing scope. And so in 1979, we changed our name to the Rail Track and Sleeper Association. Further adjustment was made in 1983, dropping the ‘Sleeper’ from the name, forming the Rail Track Association of Australia. Over the past 50 years our organisation has been focused on collaboration and sharing of knowledge, to strengthen and support our industry. The major vehicle for this sharing has been through our conferences. Between 1943 and 2001 we hosted 13 sleeper conferences around the country. In 2001 – in collaboration with the Australasian Railway Association – the Australian Railway Industry Corporation (ARIC), the Institution of Railway Signal Engineers (IRSE) and RTAA agreed to combine our efforts into a larger conference that we could all
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The RTAA supported the Emerging Rail Specialist category of this year’s Australian Rail Industry Awards, won by Kershan Pillai (right) of Mott MacDonald.
support, and so the first AusRAIL was born in 2003. And as we know, it has grown over the past 20 years into the fantastic meeting point we enjoy today. The RTAA has only been able to continue and thrive over this time due to our volunteers and our members. A number of our corporate members have supported us for over 25 years, including Melvelle Equipment, Pandrol, Plasser, Speno and Thermit. Derby Rubber and KH1 have also been with us for over 15 years. We thank them all for support over such a long period, and recognise those that while they haven’t been with us are just as valued. We could not continue without this generous and dedicated support and we thank each and every one for our past and our future.
However, to continue to support our industry we need volunteers. The best opportunity to get involved is to join us for our AGM on December 1, as we continue only with the support and involvement of industry, and this is the best chance to make your mark and join us as we push for our next 50 years. Looking forward, we have a big year ahead of us, with the field day returning, in partnership with Sydney Trains, in May 2024. Bookings are now open for exhibitors and sponsors and once again we are opening attendance to everyone for free. We can only do this with the support of the sponsors and Sydney Trains. In closing, I very much hope to see everyone at AusRAIL PLUS in Sydney and of course socialise at the event’s Yellow Dinner.
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Recognition for rail industry achievers and projects The Australasian Rail Industry (ARI) Awards have celebrated the individuals and organisations who have made significant contributions to the sector over the past year.
aro ine i ie, chief e ecutive officer, Australasian Railway Association
Rail has always been at the heart of connecting communities, from the rudimentary wooden wagons in early civilisation, to the transformational projects underway today in Australia and New Zealand that will play a pivotal role in shaping cities for decades to come. A strong commitment to innovation and driving real change in the industry was evident by the many cutting-edge projects recognised at the ARI Awards. All of the nominees showed incredible commitment to delivering a high-quality rail network that is safe, efficient, innovative and sustainable. The talent in our industry goes far and wide and will indeed ensure that the once-in-ageneration $154 billion pipeline of projects underway will support greater use of rail across our passenger and freight networks and a thriving industry into the future. There was also a strong field entered in the sustainability category. Rail will be a driving force in Australia’s journey to Net Zero and this year’s entries illustrated the industry’s growing focus on this critical issue. The category of diversity and inclusion also saw some very impressive entries this year, with Sydney Trains winning the Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Award for its incredibly impressive diversity and inclusion programs that have boosted representation of women in frontline operational and leadership roles. Rail serves a diverse range of communities throughout Australia, and many of the award nominees highlighted the importance of diverse teams and an inclusive culture to support their success.
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The ARI Awards are supported by our industry’s associations, all of which are committed to the advancement of the rail industry in Australia and New Zealand – the Institution of Railway Signal Engineers, Railway Technical Society of Australia, Rail Track Association Australia, the Rail Industry Safety and Standards Board and the Permanent Way Institution (NSW). The representatives from these associations and the wider industry had a challenging time in the judging process with so many incredible entries among the 120 submissions to the Awards. The 2023 awards featured 16 categories recognising individuals, organisations and rail projects in the areas of diversity and inclusion, sustainability, passenger, infrastructure, innovation, supply, customer experience, freight, signalling and systems engineering and safety. Achievers from both ends of the age spectrum were lauded, from veterans to the young emerging professionals. Arc Infrastructure senior stakeholder relations advisor Kevin Reeves won the Career Achievement Award in recognition of his significant contribution to the industry. He has had a distinguished, 50-year career that
The Safety Excellence Award was won by Metro Trains Melbourne.
embodies the passion and dedication of a true rail enthusiast. The Emerging Rail Specialist Award went to Mott MacDonald chartered electrical engineer Kirshan Pillai, the Young Achiever Award to John Holland site engineer Benson Wong, the Young Rail Professional Award to ARUP senior track design engineer Ryan Spooner and the Signalling and Systems Engineering Award to WSP rail technical executive Moemedi Goitsemang. Meanwhile, the Sustainability and Environmental Excellence Award went to The Link Alliance, which is leading New Zealand’s most ambitious infrastructure project to date, the City Rail Link. It was recognised for successfully embracing several sustainability initiatives at all levels of this major project, leading to a significantly reduced carbon footprint. Some of the initiatives incorporating sustainability included using 3D BIM modelling to track the projected carbon footprint as the design was developed, a first in New Zealand, design changes to reduce mined tunnelling by up to 45 per cent, replacing 21 per cent of cement with fly ash in concrete mix designs and using a social benefit and sustainability weighting when procuring materials.
The Sydney Trains team accepted awards for Employee Engagement Excellence and Diversity and Inclusion Excellence.
Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) did very well, winning four categories - the Safety Excellence Award, Customer Service Excellence Award, Rail Innovation of the Year Award and the Passenger Operations Excellence Award. Victoria also picked up the Infrastructure Project Excellence Award, which was won by the North Western Program Alliance for its work on the Preston Level Removal Crossing Project in Melbourne. MTM won the Passenger Operations Excellence Award for its highly successful management of the return to major events after the COVID pandemic, with a comprehensive, well-executed strategy enabling it to deliver a great customer experience for the six million passengers attending 216 big-ticket events in the past year alone. The Customer Service Excellence Award acknowledged MTM for its successful management of station closures during safety upgrades on the Melbourne Underground Rail. It successfully tackled a very challenging time of disruptions with a creative communications strategy using digital solutions and a strong customer focus. It received just five complaints from 1,100,000 passengers impacted during the 14-day City Loop stations closure. The Rail Innovation of the Year Award was handed out for MTM’s new rostering app, Go. The app has not only cut errors and inefficiencies but has made the day-to-day life of train drivers a lot easier. In the first three months of operation, it eliminated 61,600 phone calls by drivers to sign-on, who instead used the app. Sydney Trains picked up its share of gongs, winning the Employee Engagement Excellence Award, the Supplier Excellence Award and the Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Award.
Kevin Reeves with his Career Achievement Award.
Under Sydney Trains’ Train Crewing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion program, which won the Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Award, female trainees increased from 21.6 per cent to 53.3 per cent between 2017 and 2022 and non-frontline women roles increased from 25.1 per cent to 41 per cent. Its safety initiative, the “Seconds Count” program, won the Employee Engagement Excellence Award. The extremely clever gamified videos in “Seconds Count” not only effectively engaged employees but enabled quick decision making through real-world simulations. Another of Sydney Trains’ safety projects, the Enterprise Trackworker Safety Blindsight initiative, won the Supplier Excellence Award. The artificial intelligence vision system is designed to alert workers of any risks on site. It has been a game-changer for increasing safety throughout the rail network, showing real risk on site and capturing near misses far more than manual, paper-based methods. Private freight rail operator Pacific National took out the TrackSAFE Foundation’s
‘Recognising R U OK? Conversations’ category, which acknowledged the important contribution the company’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy plays in underpinning its R U OK? culture and encouraging meaningful conversations every day of the year. Additional initiatives included the use of an app for mental health tools, an employee assistance program, a platform for fitness benefits, and training programs like mental health first aid. RUOK? branded locomotives also fostered a psychologically safe culture and provide resources for mental health support. Pacific National secured the award from other worthy finalists in the category, including McConnell Dowell Constructions, Metro Trains Melbourne, North Western Program Alliance and V/Line, with each demonstrating how Rail R U OK? formed part of their approach to employee wellbeing. Overall, it was a very inspiring evening and reaffirmed the ARA’s vision for a thriving rail industry enabling economic growth and driving sustainability.
acific ationa as reco nised for its Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy.
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Contracts, EOIs, tenders
QUEENSLAND Gold Coast stations Contractors are now locked in for all three new train stations being built at Pimpama, Hope Island and Merrimac on the Gold Coast. Cross River Rail has been tasked with assisting in the delivery of the stations to help connect South East Queensland’s growing population, which is being undertaken as a rolling program of works. Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture (AGJV) has been awarded the contract to design and build Hope Island station. AGJV is already delivering the Coomera Connector Stage 1 North package, which sits right next to the Hope Island station site. Cross River Rail said that having the same contractor deliver both projects helped solve complex logistical and interface challenges – particularly around safety and delivery timeframes. Fulton Hogan will design and build Merrimac station, finalising major contractor procurement for the three new stations after ADCO Constructions was locked in to deliver Pimpama station in early-2023. The new stations will service some of Australia’s fastest growing suburbs and include a range of features, including kiss ‘n’ ride and commuter parking facilities, integrated bus stops and connections to nearby pedestrian and cycle paths. Major construction is underway at Pimpama, while enabling works and site investigations have started at Hope Island and Merrimac. The stations are scheduled to be operational in line with the first Cross River Rail services to the Gold Coast.
to Parkes and Albury to Illabo sections of or vision impairment, seniors, people with Inland Rail. injuries and those travelling with prams The Stockinbingal to Parkes works will and luggage. include bridge upgrades and track lowering The scopes of work across the four in Forbes to create the required height and stations include raising station platforms width clearances for double stacked trains, to bring the platform and train doors closer with an additional crossing loop to be together and reducing the gap to make constructed at Daroobalgie. boarding safer and easier. The project has been recognised for Customers will now be able to catch a lift to its sustainable design practices, receiving a station overpass and then onto the platforms. an ‘Excellent’ Design rating from the Other improvements include upgraded Infrastructure Sustainability Council. customer facilities like accessible toilets, Inland Rail has already completed the disability-compliant ticket windows, improved Parkes to Narromine section in NSW, with seating, and extended platform shelters. major construction works also underway on Laing O’Rourke will also install hearing the Beveridge to Albury section in Victoria. augmentation loops, tactile floor indicators, As part of the Inland Rail program, new wayfinding signage, information $2.7 billion in contracts has already screens and better security through CCTV been awarded to over 400 suppliers and and lighting upgrades. businesses across the country,. Laing O’Rourke managing director for Martinus Rail chief executive Treaven Australia, Rebecca Hanley, said the company Martinus said the company was proud was proud to be working in partnership with to play its part to enhance this vital Queensland Rail to deliver infrastructure infrastructure. upgrades which will improve the experience “The commencement of work marks a of commuters on the Cleveland and significant stride towards a more connected Shorncliffe lines. and prosperous future for Australia’s freight “Our team developed a winning strategy industry. Our dedicated team is committed using modern methods of construction that to delivering these crucial infrastructure will result in increased productivity and Global Principal Railway upgrades, safely, efficiently and to the technical certainty,” she said. Operations Contractor Systems highest standards,” he said. “We have built a digital component library, which allows us to capture, curate NATIONAL and surface supply chain-ready repeatable Egis/Omada components, parts, and product data. This 1500+ Civil Plant Egis has signed an agreementDedicated to acquire will allow us to bring together industryWorks signalling project management & andEquipment leading digital solutions, our local expertiseEmployees engineering services provider Omada Rail. and best practice examples from other Egis is currently working on a number critical rail projects to ensure we deliver of flagship projects in Australia and New certainty for Queensland Rail.” Zealand, notably the City Rail Link in Auckland (NZ), the Queensland Train Manufacturing NSW Program in Queensland and the High Capacity Inland Rail Metro Train rollout in Victoria. Major construction has begun on the The acquisition of Omada Rail Systems Stockinbingal to Parkes Inland Rail section will enhance Egis’ signalling and in regional New South Wales. telecommunications capabilities, enabling Inland Rail marked the occasion with it to offer the full range of rail services and a launch event at Forbes Railway Station, expertise across the region. celebrating the start of works after a thorough With a focus on the environment and planning, engagement, and design process. safety, Omada has worked on many of The Australian Government is taking Australia’s landmark projects, including work a staged approach to delivering the for ARTC, Metro Trains Melbourne, V/Line, freight project, with construction between Queensland Rail, Sydney Trains, Aurizon, and Beveridge in Victoria and Parkes in NSW South Australian D.I.T. prioritised for completion by 2027. Egis is an international player active in The delivery of these sections will the consulting, construction engineering enable Inland Rail to connect to existing and mobility service sectors. rail networks between Melbourne, Sydney, It designs and operates intelligent Perth, Adelaide and the Illawarra via Parkes infrastructure and buildings capable of and Narromine. responding to the climate emergency and Martinus Rail has been awarded a $403.5 helping to achieve more balanced, sustainable million contract to design and construct and resilient territorial development. enhancement works on the Stockinbingal
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Station Accessibility Program
Laing O’Rourke has been awarded four new projects as part of the Queensland Rail Station Accessibility Upgrade Program, delivering safe, modern, and accessible public transport infrastructure for Queenslanders. This includes the delivery of upgrades to Morningside, Lindum, Banyo and Buranda Stations where early works are already underway. The projects will improve accessibility and make it safer for customers to travel, especially those in wheelchairs or using mobility devices, people with hearing
Martinus is an Australian owned, family operated company
62 | ISSUE 10 - NOVE M BE R 2023 | RAIL EXPRESS
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