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DECEMBER 2014 ISSUE 208 £3.95

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THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR RAIL

Love your markets. Love your passengers. Head of Passenger Services, Peter Wilkinson, on humanising rail

The customer experience Do you have a vision of service?

Rail freight Ken Russell on having a more ‘can do’ attitude

Avoiding the politics Will the golden age of rail continue?


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Welcome march 2014 Issue 200 £3.95 DECEMBER 2014 ISSUE 208 £3.95

THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR RAIL THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR RAIL

www.railpro.co.uk www.railpro.co.uk

A man for Love your markets. all countries Love your passengers.

Global transport designer Paul Priestman on Head of Passenger Services, stations, high speed, increasing capacity and Peter Wilkinson, on humanising rail how the industry should advertise itself

Plus... Will BIM fail in the rail industry? How smart technology is powering rail’s digital revolution Is HS2 welcome in Yorkshire? Rail’s challenges now that Ofcom has given the go ahead for superfast satellite broadband

The customer experience Do you have a vision of service?

Rail freight Ken Russell on having a more ‘can do’ attitude

Avoiding the politics Will the golden age of rail continue?

RSSB on strengthening rail’s defences against extreme weather Should we forget the driver? How technology is changing the face of our networks

PUBLISHER RAIL PROFESSIONAL LTD Hallmark House, Downham Road, Ramsden Heath, Essex CM11 1PU Tel : 01268 711811 EDITORIAL EDITOR: LORNA SLADE editor@railpro.co.uk ASSISTANT EDITOR: DAVE SONGER editorial@railpro.co.uk DISPLAY ADVERTISING CHRISTIAN WILES chris@railpro.co.uk STEVE FRYER steve@railpro.co.uk ANDREA HAKWINS andrea@railpro.co.uk RECRUITMENT ADVERTISING DEAN SALISBURY dean@railpro.co.uk SUBSCRIPTIONS LISA ETHERINGTON admin@railpro.co.uk ADMINISTRATION CHERIE NUGENT info@railpro.co.uk DESIGN & PRODUCTION MILES JOHNSTONE production@railpro.co.uk

Rail Professional welcomes contributions in the form of articles, photographs or letters, preferably by email. Original photographs may be submitted, but, while every care will be exercised, neither the editor nor the publisher take responsibility for loss of, or damage to, material sent. Submission of material to Rail Professional will be taken as permission for it to be published in the magazine. ISSN 1476-2196 © All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the copyright owners. The views and opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher, nor does it accept liability for any printing errors or otherwise which may occur.

editor’ s note Editor’ s Note

I

t was a great pleasure this month to interview Peter Wilkinson, head of the new Passenger Services agency within the DfT’s Rail Executive. In line with his seniority, Wilkinson likes to talk about the big picture, and I’ll wager there will be changes on that scale once he gets going in his role. Wilkinson wants a railway that’s a human system – run by human beings for human beings; a system that is, as he puts it, ‘cognitive and intuitive, and that functions because of people not despite them’. Railways he says are a public service first and an economic asset second, and the public concern about the privatised model is in part fuelled by the belief that the railway isn’t necessarily as in touch with people and their needs as it should be. One of the ways of ‘taking the temperature down’ on that, believes Wilkinson, and creating confidence that the needs of public service are being placed before the needs of shareholders, would be to see Toc’s behaving with a public service ethic, getting out into society and communicating with local communities. For Wilkinson the very word ‘franchising’ is slightly derisory and he prefers the term ‘Service Delivery Partners’. ‘It really matters to me to get that language into the construct because if they’re [Toc’s] not partners and they’re merely contractors, quite honestly we’re not going to deliver a railway fit for purpose in this country.’ Welcoming the fact that national railway operators of other countries are here, Wilkinson is however disappointed at the lack of true market liberalisation across Europe. ‘Given that the premise for a lot of our industry construct and structure is founded in European law and regulation, which we’ve adopted,’ he says, ‘it seems to me countries in Europe spend nearly all their time resisting and fighting it.’ The real frustration for Wilkinson is that there could be a ‘fantastic European market for rail’ that would be competitive and innovative and could only be of benefit to all the towns, cities, regions and countries involved. On a more speculative and cynical note, Anglian Water is now involved in the campaign to open the line between Wisbech and March. ‘This is the first time major businesses in the East of England have taken the lead on the rail campaign,’ says the press release. Given that Anglian was prepared to climb into bed with Experian and gain the power to affect its customers’ credit rating, who can say what will happen if and when the line is opened. Will the company continue to remain involved? The possibilities are endless... Seasons greetings from the team at Rail Professional. Lorna Slade Editor

Speciality Greases- making a point of being on time. www.klueber.com tel: 01422 015515 sales@uk.klueber.com

your global specialist

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ISSUE 208 • DECEMBER 2014

News

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UK rail academy taking shape; all but departure boards tend to be ignored says watchdog; commute times increasing says TUC; Eurostar celebrates 20th anniversary with new e320 trains; Eurotunnel; Railtex 2015; Network Rail photography competition; Network Rail assists navigation trial; Eurotunnel outlines five obstacles to new crossChannel freight services; Rail Freight Group debates cross-Channel challenges and opportunities; freight sites back under public ownership; strong opposition to freight depot; Rail Freight Group trains drivers; GB Railfreight surpasses 1,000 train loads per week; GB Railfreight runs Dourges to Barking service; Transnet Freight Rail’s training drive steams ahead; John G Russell sales increase

Passenger Focus

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Would the introduction of more on-rail competition help? There is probably only one way to really find out and that is to try it, says Anthony Smith

Delivering the goods

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Chris MacRae looks at issues surrounding port inland haulage congestion delays, and at how rail freight is playing its part in alleviating the situationv

Exciting the nation about rail

32

Atkins’ Philip Hoare looks at how we can share the excitement within the industry, to attract the skills and new thinking necessary to meet our aspirations

Women in Rail

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Jodi Savage reports on the recent Routes into Rail launch, and looks at why apprenticeships are a win-win situation for youngsters, and rated more highly than any other qualifications by employers

Embracing the customer experience ethos

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The rail industry should be concerned about the decline in customer satisfaction because it has the potential to affect business performance in a number of significant ways, says Jo Causon

IRO news and diary

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FIRST OF ALL I’D REALLY LIKE TO GET AWAY FROM THIS WORD ‘FRANCHISING’. WE’RE NOT BURGER KING INTERVIEW - PAGE 52

May the Force be with you

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Chair of the BTPA, Millie Banerjee, issues an invitation to the industry to work even more closely with the British Transport Police

Rail Professional Interview

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Peter Wilkinson, managing director of Passenger Services, a section of the DfT’s Rail Executive, spoke to Lorna Slade about his new position and what he hopes to achieve, and why he wants to get away from the noun ‘franchising’

Small is beautiful

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Smaller consulting firms have played a key role in shaping the future of UK rail. Matthew Crosse discusses some of the benefits and challenges those firms face

Improving diesel efficiency

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Diesels will be with us for a long time to come and they need to be better says Shane McCauley, who looks at how this can be achieved in such a highly fragmented environment

A special condition

71

Rosemary Beales explains a new approach to producing conditions of contract for Network Rail

Rail Professional Interview

74

Russell Group director, Ken Russell, spoke to Rail Professional about the opportunities and challenges facing the rail freight industry – and he calls on the government to develop a clear strategy for the future

The customer is key

79

Chris MacRae explains why putting the customer at the heart of the rail freight policy agenda is absolutely key to achieving the growth targets expected of the sector

A year in rail freight

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In the run-up to the election, we will be working to ensure that freight, which is key to the economy even though it does not have a vote, is not forgotten, says Philippa Edmunds

contents continues...

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Devolve to evolve

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Devolution has brought new investment and better management of local rail than that provided by central government, says Stephen Joseph

Wannabe in rail?

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Sharon Odetunde describes the intentions of the new Route into Rail group – set up to attract young professionals to rail through awareness of the kinds of jobs the industry has to offer

Avoiding the politics

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Will this golden age of rail continue, asks John Horgan, who points to a belief across business that political uncertainty could hold back the progress of transformation

Sustainability key for 2015

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The smartest rail businesses will recognise that making the whole supply chain socially, economically and environmentally sustainable will lead to significant competitive advantage, says Nick Hemmings

A hit with rail

98

The Hit Rail Interoperability in Practice event saw speakers from several European countries debate interoperability projects in passenger and freight services and infrastructure

A new Toc in town

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Gordon Cox describes the recent progress of the Rail Operations Group – on schedule to become the UK’s newest train operating company

Toc Focus: First TransPennine Express

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One of the UK’s fastest growing Toc’s FTPE is carrying double the number of passengers than at the start of the franchise

Business news

105

Berry Recruitment; SYSTRA; Cofely; SKF; Edinburgh College; Sonatest; ABC Electrification; Cisco; NSARE; 6 Alpha Associates; Clos-o-Mat; BioClinics; GHD; North Nottinghamshire College; FreightArranger; The Survey Association; Transport Security Expo; Hitachi Rail; DeltaRail; Intelligent Installations; new members of the Rail Alliance

Business profiles

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Staff Absence Solutions; Socomec; Zonegreen; LogiKal Projects; Mechan; JMP Consultants; Viaduct; Epicuro; Qualitin; Omnicom Engineering; Grenrose Scaffolding Ltd; Mercury; Railinsure; GB Railfreight; Matchtech; Victa Railfreight; Korenix UK

People

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Peter Strachan; Christine Emmett; Neil Masom; Baroness Jo Valentine; Charlotte Vitty; David Stickland; Maarten Spaargaren; Gordon Wakeford

13/01/2014 13:15


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News in brief... NR safety issues contractor named he supplier asked to come in and explain how it plans to improve its company’s safety performance to Network Rail’s CEO Mark Carne has been named by The Independent as BAM Nuttall. Minutes of a Network Rail board meeting in September state that there had been ‘several serious incidents with one supplier’. ‘A hard line had been taken’ at the meeting with BAM’s CEO Stephen Fox, during which he ‘reaffirmed’ the company’s commitment to safety. According to the newspaper, industry sources have suggested two more suppliers might have been forced to explain themselves to Carne.

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Stop dumping says rail union he RMT has stepped up pressure on Transport Scotland and Network Rail to bring forward the target date for ending the practice of dumping raw sewage on Scotland’s rail tracks. The union has issued a call for both organisations to put pressure on Scotrail’s new operators, Abellio, to bring forward the proposed date for fitting retention tanks across the fleet from December 2017 to April 2016. RMT has not ruled out an industrial response to halt the practice if there is ‘any dragging of heels’. General secretary Mick Cash said: ‘Abellio is set to make a fortune out of the Scotrail franchise and the very least they should be forced to do is to dip in their pockets and retro-fit the retention tanks.’   16-25 Railcard is 40 years old ail Minister Claire Perry joined young apprentices at Waterloo station to help celebrate the anniversary. Introduced in 1974 as the Student Railcard and re-named in 2008 as the 16-25 Railcard, the product saves a third off many fares. Between 1991-2 and 2013-14, their number has doubled to more than 1.4 million, and the number of journeys

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New UK Rail Academy taking shape Construction is underway on the multi-million pound national training academy that will act as a flagship for skills development in traction and rolling stock when it opens in autumn 2015. An event to view the progress of the works for the National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR) took place recently, attended by Transport Minister Baroness Kramer. Announced last year, NTAR is a joint project between the National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering (NSARE), the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) and the Department for Transport (DfT), who have provided half the funds required, with industry partner Siemens contributing the other 50 per cent. Kramer said: ‘The academy for rail, the first of its kind in the UK, is a crucial part of the government’s long-term economic plan to secure a better future for Britain. Generations of young people will benefit from the apprenticeships and training provided here to find new jobs and get on in life.’ NTAR will also collaborate with other organisations nationwide to help build up a network of complementary ‘spokes’ to maximise the reach of next generation training, including the National College for High Speed Rail. Currently, some 13,500 people work in specialist traction and rolling stock roles across the UK, but a future skills shortage of around 4,000 people over the next five years is forecast – caused by factors including an ageing workforce, the technological advancement of rolling stock, and investment and growth in the industry. NTAR will enable all organisations across the sector to access its training and development facilities, including Toc’s and Foc’s, train manufacturers and maintainers, equipment manufacturers and the wider supply chain including SME’s.

Departure boards are focal point Traditional arrivals and departure boards are a focal point for most passengers – but other types of screens tend to be ignored according to a new study from watchdog Passenger Focus. The study looks at the use of different types of information screens and found that passengers valued traditional departure boards as they generally met their needs. Anthony Smith, Passenger Focus chief executive, said: ‘Whether you’re making a regular journey or setting off on an unfamiliar trip, what you need is good clear information on where to go and what’s happening with your train. The good news is that traditional departures boards are generally meeting passengers’ needs – this chimes with the National Rail Passenger Survey score of 81 per cent satisfaction for station information. ‘Nevertheless passengers made suggestions about how departures information could be made better still – so we hope to see these suggestions acted upon soon. ‘Passengers were not clear about the purpose of newer plasma-TV screens put up at larger stations, which tended to be ignored for various reasons. The

research suggests that the rail industry needs to rethink whether these screens are actually the best way to pass on extra information and underlines the need for passenger research at the early stage of a project.’ The report Passenger information screens at railway stations looked at traditional departures/arrivals boards on the concourse/platforms and other screens used to show extra information such as disruption updates.

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News in brief... made using the card has almost tripled to 61.3 million. The average 1625 Railcard holder now saves around £179 a year off the cost of their train travel. Turnaround for Irish Rail ears of falling passenger numbers have been reversed by the cash-strapped stateowned operator, with half a million more journeys taken in the first months of 2014 compared with the same period last year. Despite long-running disputes only recently resolved, preliminary figures show 28.6 million journeys were made on Iarnród Éireann from the start of the year up to October 5 – an increase of 1.6 per cent on last year. Intercity services were up 3.3 per cent to 6.3 million, and commuter trains were up 2.8 per cent to 9.9 million. The increase is attributed to a marketing drive, rising student travel, increasing employment and high profile events.

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Paying more by Oyster nalysis from London Assembly Labour Group Transport spokesperson Val Shawcross has shown passengers using Oyster PAYG fares are paying up to £107 more a week than those using Contactless and making the same journeys. Shawcross said the figures throw ‘serious doubt’ upon the Mayor’s pledge that Oyster would always be the cheapest way to travel. Despite promoting contactless as ‘the same fare as Oyster’, TfL’s introduction of weekly capping on Contactless but not Oyster, which only has daily caps, means those using Oyster are left paying significantly more.

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Rail sector is not simples rain travel brands have been ranked 22 out of 25 industries in the Global Brand Simplicity Index (GBSI) 2014 for customer service. First published in 2010,

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Eurostar celebrates 20th anniversary with new e320 train On the eve of its 20th anniversary on 13th November, the company unveiled its new state-of-the-art e320 train, scheduled to enter commercial service at the end of 2015. At the launch event at St Pancras station, Eurostar showed off its first complete e320 – so called because it is capable of speeds of up to 320kmh (200mph) – though the current restriction is 300kmh and the train slows to 160kmh in the Channel tunnel. At the same time it announced its decision to augment its fleet with a further seven e320’s, in addition to the ten that are now in the final stage of completion. The company will start a new year-round direct service to Provence in May 2015, followed at the end of 2016 by the launch of a direct route to Amsterdam. Eurostar chief executive Nicolas Petrovic said: ‘With just one year to go until our new e320 train comes into service, passengers will see a complete transformation of our service.’ Carrying 900 passengers, the e320’s represent a 20 per cent boost in capacity and their introduction represents a ‘major advance for international high speed rail’ according to Eurostar – built to bespoke specifications the trains are interoperable (see page 98), with the ability to operate across diverse European signalling systems. Eurostar announced continuing yearon-year growth to 30th September 2014. Compared with the same period in 2013, passenger number are up by three per cent to 2.8 million and sales revenue has risen by two per cent to £211 million.

Commute times increasing The amount of time commuters spend travelling to and from work has increased substantially in the past five years, according to a TUC analysis of UK data archives. The figures, published to mark the end of Commute Smart Week by Work Wise UK – show that average workers are spending almost 11 extra hours a year commuting. The South East has seen the highest increase, with commuters experiencing an additional 20 hours. Since 2008, workers in the East Midlands have seen an 18 hour increase, while those in the South West and East of England have also seen above average rises.

Londoners have only seen their timings go up by 10 hours a year, but the TUC points out they already have by far the longest commute in the UK at almost one hour and 20 minutes. The figures show that commute times by car are up by nearly seven hours per year on 2008, and bus, coach, rail, tram and underground passengers have faced a 14 hour rise, or an extra four minutes per day. The TUC said the number of journeys made on the rail network increased by 2.5 per cent last year, but the capacity of the network only increased by an extra nine miles of track.


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News in brief... the GBSI is an annual study which evaluates the state and significance of brands as well as the impact of simplicity. Based on a survey of 12,000+ consumers, the report ranks more than 500 brands on how simple or complex their service, products, or touch points are perceived to be. In the UK, rail came 19 out of 25 UK industries; likewise rail in China was 16; Germany 22; India 22; Middle East 23; Sweden 18 and US 21. AXA Insurance is the world’s worst brand, followed by Ryanair. Northern line extension approved U’s Northern line from Kennington to Battersea via Nine Elms has been given the go-ahead by the Secretary of State for Transport. The addition will support the development of the Vauxhall, Nine Elms and Battersea area as a major extension to central London, supporting 24,000 new jobs and more than 18,000 new homes. It will also cut journey times to the West End and the City to just under 15 minutes.

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LU puts £1 million into training U has unveiled £1 million pound of improvements to its apprentices’ Skills and Training Centre. The centre, based in Acton, has been modernised with new equipment and facilities to ensure the apprentices gain the skills needed to support the capital’s transport network. Apprentices at the centre are in roles including signalling, rolling stock and track engineering.

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Bearsted station gets a lift up earsted station, the gateway to Leeds Castle, has become fully accessible for the first time in its 130-year history. Funded by the government’s Access for All scheme and built by Network Rail, the station’s £1 million lifts are the 1,000th and 1,001st lifts funded by the scheme. The lifts were officially opened by Sir Hugh Robertson MP, with guests

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Bird’s eye view of London Bridge is a winner A striking black and white aerial image looking down onto people boarding and alighting trains at London Bridge station has won the Network Rail Lines in the Landscape Award at this year’s Take a View Landscape Photographer of the Year competition. The winning photograph, from around 500 entries, was captured by Stephen Bright from Hook in Hampshire. Commenting on the winning image, competition founder and landscape photographer Charlie Waite said: ‘The changes that are currently occurring at London Bridge are impressive in their scale and a traveller coming through the station for the first time in five years would undoubtedly wonder if they were in the same place. ‘Stephen’s picture, looking down on the London Bridge platforms gives the idea of a vast train set transporting the many little figures back to their homes and families. The trains are modern but the monotone treatment of the image harks back to times past and reminds us how long railways have been an important part of British life.’

Network Rail assists navigation trial Cities Unlocked, a partnership between Microsoft, Guide Dogs and Future Cities Catapult, has launched a ground-breaking new application of 3D sound to help transform how people with sight loss experience the urban landscape. Microsoft 3D audio technology takes the form of a smart headset, built in collaboration with AfterShokz, paired with a Windows Phone handset. Cloud-based location and navigation data works with a network of information beacons placed in urban locations to create a personalised 3D-soundscape transmitted through the wearer’s jaw bone. This aids orientation, navigation and provides enhanced contextual information such as shops, points of interest, and additional journey details. The technology demonstrator has been tested on a sample journey from Reading to London, encompassing walking routes and bus and train travel. The results showed that 10 of 17 measures of wellbeing were significantly increased when using the technology. Network Rail’s involvement has been to outfit Reading station with the beacons that interact with the headset to help pinpoint the user’s location and give messages such as ‘You are one metre from the platform edge’ or ‘The next train to London is in five minutes from platform 10, head left for 15 paces’. First Great Western has also installed similar masts on its trains.


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News in brief...

FREIGHT NEWS ...

from Leeds Castle, including their hawk, as well as the DfT and operator Southeastern.

Eurotunnel outlines five obstacles to new cross-Channel freight services

ScotRail boosts customer care cotRail has launched its first in-house social customer care team involving six specialists offering ‘fast, friendly’ information via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. The move reflects growing demand for social customer service, with more than 100,000 people now following ScotRail’s social accounts and about 2,500 responses provided each month. The team’s arrival has coincided with ‘social opening hours’, with responses being provided from 6am-10pm on weekdays, and 10am-10pm on weekends.

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Eurotunnel has called on the government to work with its European counterparts to tackle five obstacles it says are significant barriers to companies seeking to launch new rail freight services through the Channel Tunnel. Throughout Europe there are different regulations relating to train dimensions, with lengths in Spain being limited to 400m, Italy 500m and Germany 600m, compared to 750m in the UK and France. Eurotunnel says this limits transport capacity, with 25 per cent less capacity between Italy and the UK. In addition Britain’s generalised use of ‘long’ (13.6 million) containers are less adaptable to multi-freight wagons that operate across continental Europe. There are also gauge differences between the UK network and Europe. In Britain the gauge is narrower and requires lower wagons than the rest of Europe, which are more expensive and reduce capacity. Eurotunnel figures show this increases transport costs by £235 per train and reduces revenues by 20 per cent. Eurotunnel has also identified the lack of electrification on rail lines from the channel tunnel across Kent and the absence of a rail freight corridor linking Manchester and Birmingham as barriers to further rail freight services. The Channel Tunnel operator laid out the obstacles to an audience of rail specialists in Lille earlier this month. Despite these issues there has been double-digit growth in cross-Channel rail freight in the third quarter of 2014.

RBF to hold its first Spring Ball ickets are available now for RBF’s (Railway Benefit Fund) first ever Spring Ball fundraiser, which will be held at the National Railway Museum in York, on 23 April 2015. Organised by RBF’s northern committee the ball will have a carnival theme. Sean English, Grand Central’s CEO said: ‘RBF’s Glasgow dinner has grown to be a huge success and we are now at the point where we are confident enough to stage something different for our first major northern event.’ A table costs £1,000 while individual seats are £100. Tickets are available through RBF in Crewe. Email asmith@railwaybenefitfund.org. uk or Tel: 07768 511917 Visit www.rbfcharity.org.uk

RFG also debates Channel services The Rail Freight Group (RFG) met recently to debate the opportunities and challenges in developing cross-Channel rail freight growth and the actions needed to support new services. In recent months says the RFG, there has been a welcome upturn in traffic levels, supported by Eurotunnel’s decision to reduce tolls, the overall economic recovery and for many services, the superior loading gauge on HS1. Yet, says RFG, a number of hurdles to growth still exist and need to be progressed by the industry, including:

New East Midlands group for Young Rail Professionals RP has launched a new steering committee for the East Midlands Region, supported by East Midlands Trains. Founded in 2009, YRP provides networking and professional development for young people across the industry, as well as a Rail Ambassadors programme

A deal to transfer more than 100 rail freight sites back to the public sector has been confirmed by Network Rail, which became a government body at the start of September. The deal, for 105 sites comprising 87 from DB Schenker, 15 from Freightliner and three from GB Railfreight, was signed in March 2014 but formal transfers were not completed until November. The sites had been acquired by various rail freight operators when British Rail sold its freight business almost 20 years ago as part of rail privatisation. Describing the deal as ‘self financing’, Network Rail freight director, Paul McMahon, said it ‘represents one of the biggest changes to the rail freight sector in this country in decades and is a bold strategic move by the industry. It will help drive continued rail freight growth, give customers greater transparency and equality in property arrangements, allow Network Rail to make more efficient use of the network and release capital for Foc’s to invest in their operations.’

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• the introduction of new innovative services, such as piggyback, to open up new markets • physical network restrictions in the UK and elsewhere • terminal capacity particularly to meet growing needs at Barking • measures to improve efficiency and increase train loading and capacity • responding to the impact of the EU Sulphur directive which is likely to increase costs for cross channel ferries and create potential for rail operators. Maggie Simpson, RFG’s executive director, said: ‘The cross-Channel market is showing early signs of recovering after a decade of under-performance. We now need to work together as an industry to address the remaining barriers to trade and help rail freight to meet its true potential.’

Freight back under public ownership

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News in brief... whereby members visit educational establishments to attract the next generation of employees. Sarah Layzell, talent manager at East Midland said: ‘The region is a hotbed of developments and opportunities.’ Visit www.youngrailpro.com Never knowingly undersold o mark the start of its new 15-year franchise, c2c gave out more than 10,000 copies of its Passenger Charter, containing promises such as customers receiving twice the difference in cost if the Toc fails to sell them the best ticket for their needs; increased compensation for season ticket holders and only four hours notice required for personal assistance or a full ticket refund. MD Julian Drury said: ‘Some of our new pledges have never been seen on the UK network, such as automatic refunds for delays of just a few minutes. We’re also proud that our price guarantee goes one better than top retailers like John Lewis.’

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First luxury overnight rail in Ireland launched ith a name derived from Hibernia, the classical Latin name for the island of Ireland, the Belmond Grand Hibernian, set to be launched in summer 2016, will be the first luxury overnight rail experience of its kind in Ireland, with plans for tours of both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Belmond has acquired 10 carriages from Iarnród Éireann Irish Rail which it will be transformed into accommodation for up to 40 guests travelling in 20 elegant en-suite cabins.

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Driver actions risked ‘catastrophic’ accident ormer First Capital Connect train driver, Scott Walford, has received a three-month suspended prison sentence after he ignored warnings and safety systems on the Cambridge to London train he

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FREIGHT NEWS ... Strong opposition to freight depot proposal A 250-acre freight distribution hub close to East Midlands Airport will ‘destroy the area’, campaigners have said. If granted planning permission, the East Midlands Gateway freight depot will be built on farmland and woodland close to junction 24 of the M1. A spokesman for the Junction 24 Action Group, said: ‘The green space around Castle Donington and Lockington would be lost forever’ if the hub is built. Because of the nature of the Roxhill (Kegworth) Limited proposal for the Strategic Rail Freight Interchange (SRFI), the matter will be decided by the government. In August, St Albans District Council launched a High Court action against the government as part of its seven-year battle against plans for a rail freight terminal in Hertfordshire.

Training for the future Data released by the Rail Freight Group (RFG) shows that more than 200 drivers have been trained by the rail freight industry during 2014, with a further 100 posts planned for 2015. The new drivers have largely been recruited ‘off the street’ and have undergone rigorous training and assessment over a period of several months, in line with industry standards. Maggie Simpson, RFG executive director, said: ‘At a time when the logistics sector is facing a skills shortage in some areas, it is encouraging to see the rail freight operators step up to the mark, and make a significant investment in strengthening their driver resources. The new recruits can now enjoy a rewarding career in a vibrant and growing sector.’

Channel Tunnel deal for GB Railfreight GB Railfreight ran its first service through the Channel Tunnel for Europorte France last month, on behalf of John G Russell, transporting containers from Dourges to Barking. The Glasgow-based UK multimodal logistics provider has procured EPF to run services for its customers, 2XL and Novatrans, over a three-year period. It will involve the transport of products for Procter & Gamble and other manufacturers. John Smith, MD of GB Railfreight, said: ‘Following the procurement of 16 Class 92s back in February, it’s been the company’s aim to move into the international market. This contract is a sign that we are heading in the right direction. In addition, the utilisation of class 92s on the HS1 line further supports our commitment to sustainable freight transport.’ Kenneth Russell, director at John G Russell, said: ‘This is the very first short distance train to cross the channel and I’m delighted with the way it’s gone. I’d like to thank all the parties involved as well as our customers, who saw the benefits and patiently waited for them to be a reality. ‘The round trip between Barking and Lille Dourges has to take place within a tight timeframe, and by achieving a minimum of five rotations each week we achieve the best asset utilisation to enhance its commercial potential. This new train route is a massive opportunity for us and for companies on both sides of the channel to take advantage of the efficiencies and environmental benefit of rail.’ 1,000 train loads per week for first time GB Railfreight’s operations reached a significant milestone recently, as the company undertook 1,000 train movements for the first time in its history. In just over 10 years, this is a 1100 per cent increase in train loads per week. The company attributes the growth to developments in various markets, in particular the infrastructure sector, as GBRf has doubled its work with Network Rail as a result of greater network flows and rail head treatment services in the southern region. MD John Smith said: ‘This is an overwhelming achievement for everybody involved and it will spur us on into 2015 to continue to deliver optimum service levels for our customers and to help keep the UK economy moving.’


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News in brief... was driving. Walford passed a red signal at Hitchin station and the train’s safety system applied automatic brakes, but he deliberately reset the system and continued on without seeking the required authorisation. Prior to leaving Cambridge, Walford had also failed to set up his Cab Secure Radio, which prevented any direct contact from the signaller. Following the incident Walford was relieved from all duties at the Toc. Donald Wilson, principal safety inspector, ORR, said Walford’s actions could have led to a potentially catastrophic incident. ‘This kind of incident is very rare, but where serious failings are found, those at fault will be held to account by the rail regulator.’ Doubling of rail lines between Bristol stations he number of lines between Bristol Temple Meads and Bristol Parkway stations is set to increase from two to four through Stapleton Road and Lawrence Hill, resulting, says Network Rail, in an increase in train services and reduced journey times. The £33 million ‘Filton Four Tracks’ project will also enable an increase in freight services and forms part of NR’s Great Western Route Modernisation Programme to transform the Great Western Main Line from London Paddington to Swansea.

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Freightliner up for sale? reightliner Group has been put on sale by its Bahraini owners Arcapita, the Wall Street Journal has reported. The UK rail freight company, which Arcapita bought in 2008, may fetch as much as £400 million says the journal. Freightliner Group, which was created as a separate company as part of the privatisation of British Rail in 1996, has operations throughout the UK, Europe and Australia. Freightliner said it had no response to what it regards as speculation.

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Transnet Freight Rail’s training drive steams ahead Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) principal and vice-chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies CBE and group chief executive of Transnet SOC, Brian Molefe, recently led the first graduation ceremony for Transnet employees who have completed degrees, diplomas and certificates in railway operations management, as the company intensifies training to boost its service. The programme is the first of its kind that offers a formal qualification in railway operations management in South Africa and originated in the UK through collaboration with the Institution of Railway Operators (IRO). Eighty-five employees, mostly managers from Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), Transnet’s largest unit, completed programmes especially designed for TFR. These included Bachelor of Science degrees in Railway Operations Management, Diplomas of Higher Education and Certificates of Higher Education. Since the launch of the programme in 2012, nearly 600 employees have registered and an estimated 5,000 are expected to graduate through the programme, which is delivered through a partnership between GCU, the University of Johannesburg, the IRO and Transnet’s School of Rail. The graduates will hold qualifications from GCU, with the programme delivered locally in partnership with the University of Johannesburg. Professor Gillies said: ‘We have forged a unique and successful partnership with Transnet Freight Rail and the University of Johannesburg, and co-created courses of relevance to business, that we hope will have a transformative impact on the graduating Transnet Freight Rail students. This project is an outstanding example of our University’s enduring commitment to our social mission, to work for the common good.’ Transnet has set aside R7 billion of its R312 billion seven-year infrastructure investment programme for skills development and training. Speaking at the graduation, Molefe said: ‘We are confident that a significant percentage of graduates will become teachers and votaries for rail - spreading knowledge in the same way, planting seeds for future generations to nurture. They need to go out there and sell their vision of what a prosperous, educated and stable Africa will look like.’


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Road-rail growth helps John G Russell sales increase Scottish logistics, transport and warehousing firm John G Russell (Transport) has revealed a £5 million increase in sales in its most recent year-end accounts. Turnover has grown from £53.9 million in 2013 to £59.1 million to March 31, 2014, representing a 10 per cent increase in sales over the 12 months. In addition, operating profit rose from £3.02 to £3.25 million, an increase of more than seven per cent. Chief executive Alan Poulton said that the improvements came from an increased workload from the company’s food and drinks customers, and the company’s ability to attract new customers with its extensive UK road-rail-intermodal distribution network. He said: ‘Rail activities continued to increase and offer a wide range of key customers not only an efficient route-to-market but also the opportunity to significantly reduce their carbon footprint. ‘We remain committed to the achievement of a high quality, reliable, robust and cost-effective logistics service to the UK market. Our focus on new business development underpinned by organic growth and supported by a philosophy of innovation, as a means of achieving long-term prosperity, remains an essential part of this strategy.’ (see Rail Professional interview page XX)

Industry leaders to speak at Railtex 2015 Leading industry figures will give their insights into prospects and opportunities for the UK rail sector during a comprehensive programme of events planned for Railtex 2015. Speakers will include Richard Price, chief executive of the ORR (Office of Rail Regulation) and Jeremy Long, European CEO of MTR Corporation. The Knowledge Hub will feature once again as the venue for the Project Updates programme detailing progress on current UK rail schemes, and for The Platform, a series of open discussion forums on topical industry themes. As well as that, a wide-ranging programme of seminars covering developments and trends in technology and practice will run at the Seminar Theatre throughout the show. Railtex 2015 will take place from 12 to 14 May in Halls 3 and 3a at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham. Three-quarters of available stand space has already booked and demand to be part of the event is running at its highest level ever according to the organiser Mack Brooks. Visit www.railtex.co.uk Page 24 December 2014


Letters

Readers air their views about the railway industry and Rail Professional

Trainofthought Please email letters to: editor@railpro.co.uk Or post to The Editor, Rail Professional, Hallmark House, Downham Road, Ramsden Heath, Essex CM11 1PU. Letters may be edited for length

Dear Madam, The real reason behind the tunnel

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century and a half after his dreams of a tunnel linking the UK to France, Bonaparte would have been proud. He may not have envisaged the high-speed train service that now whisks travellers between London and Paris in just over two hours but he would surely be impressed by what is still the longest undersea tunnel in the world. The tunnel cost £9.5 billion to build (a bargain by modern standards but nearly twice the original estimate – watch out HS2). It also enabled the creation of the UK’s first high-speed rail line, the imaginatively named HS1, and the creation of Eurostar. The first of these is now in the hands of Canadian investors who bought it from the government for £2.1 billion (a bargain I’d say, given its long-term prospects). So why, on its twentieth birthday, are we now selling the last bit we own and should we be? Firstly, we need the cash to rebalance the UK coffers and the sale of Eurostar is what Osborne describes as ‘an important contribution’ to the £20 billion the government hopes to raise from such sales. Symbolically important perhaps but at a likely price of a few hundred million for Britain’s 40 per cent stake, it is a drop

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in the ocean (or should that be the channel?) At least the timing is good. After years of being battered by the unexpected boom in low-cost air travel, the outlook for Eurostar (and hence the price it will fetch) has never been brighter. Returning 6.5 per cent, it is a much more profitable operation than any other part of UK rail and still effectively a guaranteed monopoly (other operators were supposed to be here by now but the first, Deutsche Bahn, is still ‘getting there’ in a British Rail kind of way). Eurostar has also just ordered some shiny new trains and announced a slew of ambitious plans for new routes and destinations across Europe. So if we are to sell, this is certainly a good time to do it. Secondly, and with one notable and soon to expire exception, the UK government doesn’t believe in running train services (stop sniggering at the back). What I mean of course is that our declared model for UK rail is to attract private operators to run services on publically owned infrastructure. That way we can get private investors to deliver efficiency and drive some healthy competition to boot. Whether this is wise or has been successful is a debate for another day but such is the strength of our current coalition’s conviction that amidst much noisy objection, it has pushed ahead with the re-privatisation of the East Coast Mainline despite the great job being done by the publically owned and run Directly Operated Railways (DOR). DOR’s last published results showed the culmination of an unmitigated success story of public ownership and it even managed to improve employee engagement along the way. This performance cannot be described as too little or even too late but perhaps it could be described as just a little too much against the political grain. To many eyes, not least of course those of the RMT, the re-privitisation of the East Coast Mainline can therefore only be seen as a triumph of ideology over evidence.   So, for those that yearn for renationalisation, these are dark days as we pass two very significant bits of railway back into private hands. For those who like irony, we can muse on the fact that whoever buys Eurostar, the majority will still be owned by the French government which clearly does believe in running not only its own, but also other people’s railways. Why do I say that? Well apart from its majority share in Eurostar and of course the entire French railway, the French government is the majority shareholder of Keolis; a firm which in partnership with Go-Ahead, First and Amey has grown its interest in UK rail to five franchises that together account for over a third of all rail journeys in the UK. In fact between French government -owned Keolis, Dutch government-owned Abellio and German government owned Arriva, foreign government ownership is involved in about 3/4 of the UK’s rail services meaning that our government’s determined drive for privatisation has actually resulted in a bizarre kind of offshore re-nationalisation. Clearly it’s perfectly fine for governments to run railways as long as it’s not the UK government! That tunnel certainly has a lot to answer for and if only they could see us now Napolean and Albert Mathieu would surely both be smiling. Yours sincerely  Toby Ashong Head of Infrastructure, Boxwood December 2014 Page 25


Opinion

In the passenger seat

Open season? Would the introduction of more on-rail competition help? There is probably only one way to really find out and that is to try it, says Anthony Smith

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aybe it is the time of year, maybe it is the approaching election. The rail ‘chatterati’ are getting excited again about the prospect of more open access-type operations. Of course most passengers would not be able to distinguish an open access operator from any other variety. They want a reliable, clean train provided by a company that seems to care about them. However, our National Rail Passenger Survey scores and the recent work we did on passenger trust in the railways indicate passengers do like Hull Trains and Grand Central. It seems to be generally easier being good if you are smaller, but not a passport to success. So, should there be more competition or less on the railways? As a consumer organisation Passenger Focus likes competition. Competition drives behaviours that generally benefit consumers. Where competition does not exist, regulation and consumer power can play a part in mimicking the competition that otherwise would exist in an easy-to-enter market. So, we play a part in the benchmarking research work we do, as well as our boosted role in the franchise replacement process. This helps ensure the passenger voice is amplified – few passengers can voice their opinions by changing supplier or exiting the market and doing something else. But would the introduction of more on-rail competition help? There is probably only one way to really find out and that is to try it. The argument goes that longer-distance train companies make an operating profit, carry passengers who probably have a degree of choice about whether to travel or not and therefore should Page 26 December 2014

have a clear, natural incentive to go about finding more, happier passengers. So they can act just like normal businesses. Get more people on board, more investment and a longer-term view. The existing evidence is sort-of helpful. Would East Coast, which itself gets pretty good National Rail Passenger Survey scores, be as good if Hull Trains and Grand Central did not exist? Perhaps not. On the other hand some argue the development of the routes which East Coast serves has been hampered and warped by the competition. Have fares been kept down as a result? Probably where you have head-tohead competition at places like York and Doncaster but fares may have risen elsewhere to compensate. Has the taxpayer’s interest been served? Has the franchised service had money taken away from it thereby lowering the premium to government and therefore depressing levels of investment in the railway? These are complex arguments further confused by the fact that open access companies pay lower fees to use Network Rail’s tracks than franchised operators. True head-to-head competition is also hard to imagine. How would the juicy, revenue-rich peak slots be allocated? How would smaller towns be served? Anyone who thinks they can get politics out of the railway is fooling themselves. Large sums of taxpayer money are still invested in the railways and, of course, the railways serve much broader objectives for society and government. So, more open access, more competition and more choice? Yes, but only if the rail regulator and others can ensure that the overall passenger interest can be identified and promoted. Anthony Smith is chief executive of Passenger Focus


Welcome to the Abellio Way The ability to move freely, safely and with ease is a precondition for a successful society. This has always been and will remain the role of public transport within communities. At Abellio we believe our responsibility to passengers extends beyond their journey on our trains and buses, so our services are focused on a single objective: delivering the full door-to-door journey requirements of our passengers. This is the Abellio Way: Beyond a-to-b. Across the Abellio group, we operate rail, bus and tram services in England, Germany and the Netherlands, and every day over 12,500 of our people ensure that 1.4m passengers reach their destinations safely. Without the diligence and commitment of our people who consistently deliver our core values on a daily basis, we would not have the reputation we do for customer service and partnership working. We take great care, therefore, to invest in them as ambassadors for Abellio. Our way, the Abellio Way, focuses on talent management and international best practice programmes, which allow our people the freedom to achieve their full potential.

And we don’t just encourage excellence, we reward it with our annual Abellio Achievement Awards. Open to employees of all levels, the awards recognise and celebrate outstanding performance in six categories: Excellence, Bringing the Abellio Values to Life, Innovator of the Year, Leader of the Year, Team of the Year, and Employee of the Year. Our culture, our values, our commitment to customer needs and our dedication to creating world class partnerships represent the very essence of Abellio; it differentiates us in the world of public transport. It is the Abellio Way.

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December 2014 Page 27


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Opinion

Delivering the goods Chris MacRae

Drivers for change Chris MacRae looks at issues surrounding port inland haulage congestion delays, and at how rail freight is playing its part in alleviating the situation

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hippers are experiencing an acute problem in obtaining inland transport deliveries, with some shipping lines quoting up to eight days before deliveries can be made. This appears to be attributable to a range of issues, including delays, inland transport haulage shortages, problems with container availability and driver shortages. The Freight Transport Association (FTA) is therefore convening a meeting of its International Supply Chain Forum to bring all stakeholders in the UK maritime supply chain together, including port container terminals, shipping lines, freight forwarders, specialist hauliers and the main representative organisations

such as FTA, DfT, Chamber of Shipping, UK Major Ports Group, British Ports Association, Rail Freight Group and British International Freight Association to discuss the problem and to identify potential solutions to resolve the problems. Container lines are warning customers that the UK road haulage market continues to face challenges and delays as a result of increased cargo volumes through all UK ports and a general shortage of both vehicle, rail and driver availability. One of the largest container shipping lines in the world, Hapag-Lloyd pointed out that the reliability and punctuality

of UK container loadings and deliveries had been affected by these issues and that this is likely to continue in the coming months ‘while these constraints in the market remain’. Havoc in the lead up to Christmas The British International Freight Association (BIFA) last month warned that a severe shortage of HGV drivers in the UK ‘could wreak havoc’ with deliveries in the lead up to the Christmas peak season. The freight forwarding trade association said its members – which tend to be truck hirers, rather than operators – were reporting that driver shortages were contributing to significantly

December 2014 Page 29


Opinion

increased waiting times for available vehicles, much higher costs from haulage companies, and surcharges from some shipping lines. BIFA has said its members were also reporting that the difficulties being caused by the shortage of UK HGV drivers was ‘being compounded by an earlier-than-expected peak season with higher-than-forecast volumes of container and trailer imports’. The Association also observed that implementation of new HGV driver regulations in early September – the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) – had also contributed to a driver shortage already present within the logistics and distribution sector, and caused by a lack of new entrants. The Freight Transport Association’s view is that it appears that most drivers had completed their CPC in time to meet the deadline, but commented that the deadline had highlighted a more fundamental problem of driver supply in the future. Other reports have suggested that the Driver CPC deadline also accelerated the retirement of some older drivers. The FTA has also expressed concerns over the readiness of some agency drivers, which industry usually calls 10/8/10

11:40

upon to handle the Christmas peak, and furthermore the driver supply in the future. Normally fleet managers would look to their employment agencies to supply temporary drivers to meet their peak demand periods, but surveys of agency driver availability suggest that there may not be the numbers of qualified drivers to meet the peak demand. But what about rail? Rail freight deep sea (port) intermodal volumes continue to grow as the economy emerges from recession. As a means of enabling rail freight to play its part in connecting the ports that act as gateway ports for UK to global markets, government has backed the Strategic Freight Network investment programme in enhancing the loading

gauge for strategic freight rail routes to and from the major ports. This enables the larger 9’6” shipping containers that are increasingly common on a trade to be carried. This has allowed rail freight growth out of Southampton and Felixstowe ports. But more needs to be done. Current schemes are now planning to deliver equivalent upgrades on the key diversionary routes, necessary for when the main routes are closed to traffic for essential maintenance. It is obviously vital that these are delivered on time and within budget to enable forecast rail freight growth and to ease the issues of port congestion. For more information on FTA’s rail freight policy work and its Rail Freight Council, please contact Chris MacRae cmacrae@fta.co.uk

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Opinion

Exciting the nation about rail In the first of a regular column, Philip Hoare looks at how we can share the excitement within the industry, to attract the skills and new thinking necessary to meet our aspirations

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ith CP5 well and truly upon us, the challenge the rail industry is facing is how we step up and show what we can do in terms of delivering the programme on time, with greater efficiency but above all safely. It’s a pretty tough challenge. Network Rail’s plans for this control period will see an exciting programme of works delivered to make our railway network more modern, efficient and able to cope with rising demand. Having been awarded a number of contracts for CP5, Atkins is looking forward to the new opportunities ahead. Sat alongside projects such as HS2, Crossrail 2 and the introduction of new technology to make the railway smarter, I think it’s easy to get excited about what the future has to offer. The big question on my mind at the moment is: are we doing enough to share

this excitement with the rest of the UK so that we attract the skills and new thinking needed to successfully meet our aspirations? How will we as an industry deliver these major infrastructure programmes over the coming years while combating other challenges such as skill shortages and the continuing need to be more efficient? I believe the answer lies in being more open to innovative and flexible ways of meeting the people-demands of these programmes. We can do this in a number of ways but it is clear that we need to build skilled capacity in our sector. This means exciting the nation and then providing real opportunities for the next generation of railway engineers through graduate positions and apprenticeships and by re-training people from different walks of life to work with us. Atkins, like other companies in the industry runs its own apprenticeship programmes which are giving young people the opportunity to learn about our sector and carve out an exciting career. Our rail business has employed more than 30 apprentices over the last couple of years and Atkins has pledged its support to the achievement of five per cent of our overall UK headcount being on a formalised apprentice, sponsored student and/or graduate programme. We have already met this target with 12.5 per cent of our workforce now made up of people from this background – but is this enough? Another way to plug the skills gap is to employ skilled workers from different industries and overseas. Atkins has a lot of experience in this area, taking on exarmed forces personnel to work in its rail business. During 2013 we developed and ran an in-house training programme that sees ex-armed forces personnel become qualified signalling testers. Looking further afield, we teamed up with the University of Bucharest which runs a specialist signalling degree (for which

Page 32 December 2014


Opinion

‘Working smarter, sharing objectives, challenges and successes and delivering projects in a truly collaborative manner must be the right way forward. That’s why I am committed to the principles of BS 11000, the standard for collaborative business relationships that provides organisations with a framework to set up formal alliances and partnerships’ there is no equivalent in the UK) and have now employed a number of graduates from this programme. As we all know, meeting the demands of the future is not just about bringing new people into our sector, it’s also about how well we work together across our industry. Working smarter, sharing objectives, challenges and successes and delivering projects in a truly collaborative manner must be the right way forward. That’s why I am committed to the principles of BS 11000, the standard

for collaborative business relationships that provides organisations with a framework to set up formal alliances and partnerships. Early adopters of these principles such as the Stafford Area Improvements Programme are already on track to deliver one year ahead of their 2017 deadline. So what’s the real opportunity here? There is no doubt that many of us out there are making significant investments to attract and then develop new people

into our sector. There is the Trailblazer group which developed the Railway Engineering Design Technician Apprenticeship Standard, and the Technician Apprenticeship Consortium is doing some great work. But again, are we doing enough? What I consistently hear is that there is no one size fits all solution – every business has different training needs. And guess what? This means we do our own thing and develop our own programmes. Probably not the most cost-effective way of doing this and certainly not something that will excite our nation and push people towards a bright new career in the rail sector. I believe we need to be smarter by combining our collective thinking and ideas, collaborating effectively for the greater good and developing nationally supported programmes that encourage new people into our industry either at the start of their careers or mid-career for those looking to re-train. Let’s build on what we have started and get it right this time – it’s vital for the future of Rail in the UK. Philip Hoare is the group managing director of Atkins’ UK rail business

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Opinion

The power of apprenticeships Jodi Savage reports on the recent Routes into Rail launch, and looks at why apprenticeships are a win-win situation for youngsters, and rated more highly than other qualifications by employers

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outes into Rail has been created as a sub-group of the National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering (NSARE) Industry Promotion Steering Group (IPSG). The main aim for Routes into Rail is to support the rail industry by developing tools and initiatives to help increase the talent pool while promoting the rail industry as an attractive career choice. Women in Rail is a proud supporter of the group and we work closely with it on a number of initiatives, including the Joint University Presentation Programme which featured in last month’s column.

in the next seven years and, perhaps unsurprisingly, 14 per cent of employees in the rail industry are under 30 years old compared with 24 per cent in the whole economy. However to me the most interesting figure highlighted was that during 2012/2013 27,155 students embarked on a degree in engineering while 66,410 opted to begin an engineering apprenticeship. Apprenticeships are currently a

Last week I attended the Routes into Rail launch in London and heard from a number of speakers about why we should collectively be promoting the rail industry to the young generation and some of the ways in which we can do this. A number of facts, figures and statistics were offered throughout the presentations including that there will be £25 billion of investment in rail

hot topic perhaps fuelled by the Prime Minister who announced last month that a future Conservative government would use £1 billion in welfare spending cuts to fund three million new apprenticeships. The Apprenticeships website (www. apprenticeships.org.uk) states that after completing an apprenticeship 85 per cent will stay in employment with 64 per cent staying with the same

employer. According to ICM Research’s Apprenticeships Survey of Employers, 15 per cent of them believe that qualified apprentices are 15 per cent more employable than those with other qualifications. So what does the rail industry think about apprenticeships? Network Rail runs a very successful threeyear advanced apprenticeship scheme covering a range of disciplines while taking on, on average, 200 apprentices each year. Since the scheme began in 2005 NR has recruited a total of 2,103 apprentices with retention rates in the mid to high 90’s. Currently five per cent of the intake of apprentices is female but NR has an aspiration to increase this to at least 12 per cent and, to this end, has a range of initiatives to inspire young women to select STEM subjects and choose a career in engineering. Network Rail itself has a number of noticeable appointments including former apprentices becoming maintenance engineers, project managers, designers, testers, and one is even a national aerial survey specialist in the Network Rail helicopter. Bombardier also runs an apprenticeship scheme and has a fantastic success story with one of its young apprentices. Kirsten Gorton undertook a young apprenticeship scheme with Rolls Royce while still at school before joining Bombardier as an apprentice. Gorton has excelled by completing her four year apprenticeship in three years and has become the first female welder at Bombardier and the only female welder in Derby. Earlier this year Gorton met the Secretary of State for Education, Nicola Morgan, and made such a great impression that she was invited to speak December 2014 Page 35


Opinion

‘I strongly believe that apprenticeships are popular with both young people and businesses. The apprentices can earn a wage and gain valuable workplace skills while also achieving nationally recognised qualifications’ on the main stage at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham where she spoke about the importance of education and the great achievements you can accomplish with an apprenticeship. Gorton is passionate about encouraging more young women to join the industry and to consider undertaking an apprenticeship in engineering. As she said in her speech: ‘I simply had to prove that a girl could do it too!’ Interestingly, Abellio also recently announced that as part of its new ScotRail franchise (which was announced

on 8th October and will commence operation in March 2015) it will have at least 100 apprenticeships on offer. I work at Wabtec Rail which has run a very popular apprenticeship programme for many years. This year two of the eight apprentices we have employed are female – a first for us. Popular with youngsters as well as business I strongly believe that apprenticeships are popular with both young people and businesses. The apprentices can earn a

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wage and gain valuable workplace skills while also achieving nationally recognised qualifications. Businesses benefit by having a pool of people who have the correct skills and specific capabilities that their business needs. Furthermore apprenticeships are generally less expensive than recruiting and training experienced workers because of high recruitment costs plus induction and training expenditure. We need to ensure that we are taking steps to make apprenticeship schemes not only available in the rail industry but appealing to both male and female applicants. We can do this through advertising and marketing material – ensuring that we show a diverse workforce in images that we use. We can also encourage our young stars to become ambassadors to promote the rail industry at local schools, colleges and university events to provide male and female role models who can inspire the next generation. Jodi Savage is sales account manager at Wabtec Rail and a board member of Women in Rail

LinkedIn: Women in Rail Twitter: @WomeninRail Visit: www.womeninrail.org

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TI is a multi-discipline specialist UK Rail contractor providing innovative structural refurbishments and strengthening throughout the UK. Their in-house services include surface preparation and application of protective coatings, steelwork fabrication, repairs and strengthening and in order to bring efficiencies to every job TI utilise their own scaffolding divisions. News of the London Stock Exchange accolade arrived just as the specialist rail contractors were celebrating being awarded a three year, £22m contract for phase four of refurbishment works to the Tay Rail Bridge

It seems the 600 strong company, who have offices throughout the UK, are not just darlings of the National press but are also striking a chord closer to home near their HQ in Bolton, where they were recently crowned the 9th fastest growing business in Greater Manchester for 2014. TI offer market-leading technologies and unparalleled expertise on every project. Their commitment to adding value stretches across all aspects of their business and was recognised recently with the ‘Platinum Badger Award’ for works to the Royal Albert Bridge over the River Tamar. This award represents the ultimate recognition by Network Rail IP Western for demonstrating sustained excellence and raising industry standards in health, safety and environmental controls.

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Opinion

Embracing the customer experience ethos The rail industry should be concerned about the decline in customer satisfaction because it has the potential to affect business performance in a number of significant ways, says Jo Causon

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t is becoming clear that a new environment for customer service is emerging. Customers are less tolerant than ever of organisations that fail to meet their expectations. There is greater transparency about organisations’ customer service performance and customers increasingly benchmark the service they receive against leading players across industry sectors, such as John Lewis and Amazon. Customers seek to interact with organisations through a wide variety of channels and expectations of speed, responsiveness and convenience have grown in importance. Dissatisfied customers take to social media to voice their displeasure, while others use it to advocate and recommend. We are seeing the development of a genuine relationship economy where an organisations’ success depends on the quality of their relationships, not just with customers, but with partners and suppliers. A fact that rail companies would be wise to take on board. Against this backdrop, customer service in the UK and trust in organisations have fallen in the past year. The UK Customer Satisfaction

“One of the key elements of customer satisfaction – where most rail companies score lower than both the national average and the Transport sector average – is professionalism of employees, a set of measures based on customers’ perceptions of helpfulness, friendliness and competence of staff as well as the extent to which customers feels they are treated as a valued customer”

Index (UKCSI), the national measure of satisfaction based on responses from more than 9,000 customers, showed a drop from 77.9 (out of 100) in July 2013 to 76.3 in July 2014, after several years of continuous improvement. Moreover, younger people, on average, are less satisfied with the level of customer service they receive, suggesting that customer expectations will continue to grow in the future. These trends are common to almost all of the 13 sectors measured in UKCSI and Transport is no exception. With a UKCSI score of 72.1, the transport sector sits 4.2 points below the all-sector average. The average score for rail companies (which make up 14 of the 25 Transport organisations included in UKCSI) is 70.5, lower than the average for Transport as a whole. There is a wide range of scores for customer satisfaction between rail companies, with 20 points (out of 100) separating the highest and lowest ranked rail organisations. Transport companies and rail companies in particular, should be concerned about the decline in customer satisfaction because it has the potential to affect business performance, in a number of significant ways. In competitive markets there are powerful business reasons to maintain a consistent focus on customer service, as there is a demonstrable link between high levels of satisfaction, recommendation and repurchase. Where competition is less obvious or customers have no alternative service provider, a positive customer service score also has tangible business impacts. Low customer satisfaction leading to high volumes of complaints is expensive to administer, impacts on the reputation of an organisation and can mean focusing on things that take energy and commitment away from opportunities to innovate and drive genuine service improvements. The Transport sector causes more problems for customers than average – 16.4 per cent of customers said they had had a problems dealing with a transport

organisation compared to the national average of 13.4 per cent. Where problems do occur the main causes for complaint are linked to be quality of services, late or slow service, staff attitude and staff competence. Moreover, when customers did report a problem, 34 per cent said that the reaction they encountered from an employee was ‘seemed uninterested’. This may explain why there is a high proportion of customers who experience a problem – 35 per cent – who don’t report it, suggested that volumes of reported complaints alone do not tell the whole story. Low satisfaction affects employee engagement and morale and makes it harder to retain the committed, skilled people organisations need to build successful customer relationships. Lower score for staff professionalism in rail One of the key elements of customer satisfaction – where most rail companies score lower than both the national December 2014 Page 39


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Opinion

average and the Transport sector average – is professionalism of employees, a set of measures based on customers’ perceptions of helpfulness, friendliness and competence of staff as well as the extent to which customers feels they are treated as a valued customer. Some of the biggest differences are between the highest and lowest scoring transport organisations and relate to staff attitude, handling of enquiries and quality of information provided. Customer service is also strongly linked to trust and reputation, factors which are essential to maintaining relationships with a wide range of stakeholders and key factors in positioning organisations to win or retain franchises. Turning the situation around There are a number of things rail companies need to deliver in order to drive consistent improvements in customer service. There needs to be a genuine leadership commitment to customer service which is communicated

across the organisation and reflected in team and individual objectives. The Institute’s research shows that organisations with high levels of customer satisfaction perform strongly and consistently across a range of key attributes of the customer experience. These include: being easy to do business with; preventing problems from occurring; resolving customer problems promptly; delivering on promises; and crucially, supporting their employees to ensure they are able to cope with all types of customer issues. Employees need to be trained and empowered to deal sensitively with challenging customer situations, especially when there are interruptions in service. While individual employees can’t necessarily deal personally with severe service delays or problems, they can make a significant difference to customers’ experience by the way they react and manage these challenging situations. It’s essential that organisations build a culture of engagement where there is

a clearly understood vision of service, where individuals are encouraged to develop their customer service skills and to identify ways of improving customer experiences. Where customers perceive employees to be engaged, knowledgeable and helpful they are much more likely to be satisfied with the organisation. In this era of rapidly changing customer needs and falling satisfaction, there will be winners and losers. Organisations that maintain a consistent focus across the whole of their customer experience will benefit from longterm satisfaction, trust, reputation and improved efficiency. As the scrutiny on organisations that fail to meet customer expectations intensifies, the voice of the customer will become increasingly important, and those rail companies that truly embrace the customer experience ethos will be able to achieve sustainable differentiation. Jo Causon is CEO of the Institute of Customer Service

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December 2014 Page 41


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Become a member…

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Network Rail Devolution two years on embers of the IRO North West Area were given thebeopportunity to hear Our Annual Lunch for Members and Guests will held at from Phil Verster, toute The Mermaid, Puddle Dock, London. On Friday 19th April managing director, Network Rail LNE 2013 from midday. Our guest speaker is the Rt. Hon. and EM about his vision for improving Simon Burns, Minister of State for Transport. train service performance and delivering increased capacity on our increasingly congested network. Tickets – £47.00 per head The current operational plan aims to Table of 10 – £470.00 per table meet a number of sometimes competing (Ticket prices are inclusive of VAT @ 20%) priorities for different operators, and Network Rail aims to offer a base Download a booking form at: provision that is robust and timetable deliverable. However, the current base Éireann) and Luke Durston (Network www.railwayoperators.co.uk offering contains inherent variances to Rail) presented their ideas to the judges Call: 01785 248113 actual deliverability, with planning rules and guests. During their presentations sometimes not being in place at all, or in all of the finalists showed a thorough other cases not being accurate for today’s reasoning of their innovative ideas. modern railway operation. Following questions with the finalists, Phil has invested in his team to provide the panel of judges John McArthur (chief the capacity and capability to measure executive officer of Tracsis), Claire Mann and understand where improvements can (operations and safety director of Arriva be made to base timetables. The team is Trains Wales) and Stewart Langridge (operations director of Freightliner Heavy working with operators to make changes wherever possible, however the major Haul), had the difficult task of selecting timetable change in December 2016 is the the winner. vision for the route, with timetables that Congratulations go to the joint will deliver resilient performance. winners Pat Casey (passenger services Phil’s ‘can do’ approach has seen manager) and Stacey Adriaanse (safety investment in technology, helping to liaison executive, Northern who Your local IRO Area runs events all year round. ThereDistrict) are opportunities to see how others improve the performance of the railway, impressed the judges so much with their The afternoon sessions covered topics broaden your experience and add to decided your professional such as the funding of GPS and other ideas that it was both finalists development. includingwork, maximising resource within an the website to and findROI out more… www.railwayoperators.co.uk monitoring equipment to some Toc fleets. should be awarded the winning title and Alliance,Visit OTMR – what it offers This provides a wealth of automated data be given £1000 each – CEO of Tracsis, assessment and what traffic management that allows the understanding of today’s John McArthur was happy to double the means for the rail industry. performance to be widely appreciated. original cash prize as he felt both finalists Delegates were able to gain a national As a strong advocate of an On Time had presented equally valuable and view of best practice in one day and take railway, Phil believes that this is what innovative ideas. away knowledge, learning and actions our customers expect of us. The audience During her presentation, Stacey back to the workplace. was provided with interesting statistics outlined a project she has been working Committed to offering valuable around On Time performance and how on to address anti-social behavior issues learning experiences, the accounts were it has improved, but also on where it still which have impacted railway operations filmed enabling the value of the learning needs to be better delivered. at an urban railway station. She explained to be shared large-scale by IRO Corporate Phil shared with the group how the how engaging with the local community Members. industry is now using a PPM attrition significantly reduced trespassing and tool to help in planning performance vandalism at the station in question. IRO Innovations Concepts Awards improvement, and that the impact of In contrast, Pat explained his remote he finalists, judges and guests 1 welcomed to the IRO having a railway capable of delivering pilotman idea which2is being trialed on a were from the first train of the day is critical. railway line in Ireland. Pat described the Innovations Concepts Awards by MembersDay were process and its benefits compared Jo Kaye, IRO chair and strategy South West Area: South when West Area: Operations Experience – challenged by Phil for Modernising theNetwork Western Route October 2012 West Somerset Railway, Minehead October their views2012 in a number of areas, which traditional pilotman working. and planning director, Rail.– Swindonwith created further opportunities for learning Using innovations to tackle genuine During her welcome speech Jo stated through the subsequent discussions. business needs is increasingly important that innovation is fundamental to the The theme throughout the event in the delivery of tomorrow’s railway success of the rail industry and that, was to challenge current operating and operations. That is why the IRO was although we have come so far, there are planning principles and practices where pleased to host this event with the many exciting challenges ahead. necessary and to work together to provide support of Tracsis which encourages Throughout the evening Pat Casey a better performing railway for our innovators within the industry to reach (Iarnród Éireann), Kerry Cassidy (First customers. Great Western), Stacey Adriaanse (Iarnród their potential.

Maximising Performance in Change he most recent IRO learning conference brought together key industry speakers at the Charing Cross Hotel in London. Thought provoking presentations addressing complex operational issues and how they impact on performance were delivered to the delegates. Chaired by Rob Warnes, planning and programmes director, Northern and chair of the ATOC Performance Forum, the conference was an excellent platform for ideas and incited lively discussions from the floor. In the morning, delegates were presented with the effects of ERTMS on performance as well as pursuing performance improvement through the timetable and an overview of the Industry Access Programme, a Rail Delivery Group-sponsored initiative which seeks to transform the access and timetable planning model, unlocking value and creating benefits for the entire rail industry.

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December 2014 Page 43

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Speakers Include Jeremy Long Chief Executive Officer, European Business of MTR Corporation Morten Søndergaard Programme Director, Danish National Resignalling Programme (Banedanmark) Malcolm Dobell Former Head of Train Systems Engineering, London Underground

Page 44 December 2014


IRO

4 February 2015: Railway operations and systems engineering workshop: Putting whole railway conception into practice on railway projects Successful railways depend on integration of the operational and technical aspects so that they work effectively together. The IRO and the UK chapter of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) are jointly organising a workshop to explore how this integration may be improved. Charing Cross Hotel, London – all day. 17 April 2015: Annual Members’ lunch and mini-conference London venue – save the date in your diary. Full details will be available on the IRO website soon. Irish Area For information on Irish Area events contact Hilton Parr at i.chairman@railwayoperators.co.uk Scottish Area For further information on the IRO Scottish Area please contact Jim Douglas on 0141 354 5684 or email at s.events@railwayoperators.co.uk North East Area 11 December 2014: Christmas social evening - Leeds Join the North East Area members for a Christmas social evening All speaker events are normally held (unless otherwise stated) at the East Coast Academy,

Platform 9, York Station, 17:00 for a 17:30 start. If you would like to attend any of these events or for further details please contact David Monk-Steel at northeast@railwayoperators.co.uk North West and Wales Area For information on North West Area event, please contact Tricia Meade at nw.events@ railwayoperators.co.uk . For general membership enquires please contact Carl Phillips at nw.chairman@railwayoperators.co.uk Midlands Area For information on Midlands Area events contact Julia Stanyard on 0121 345 3833 or email: midlands@railwayoperators.co.uk Events start at 17:30 for 17:45 South West and Wales Area 8 December 2014: Christmas Quiz and Social Event It just wouldn’t be Christmas without the IRO South West & Wales Area’s annual Christmas Quiz and Social. Don’t miss out on an evening of quizzical entertainment with a railway bias. A buffet will be provided and there will be a special prize for the winning team. £10 donation per team for entry, with all proceeds donated to Railway Children (www.railwaychildren.org.uk) 30 December 2014: Christmas social event – West Somerset Railway visit This trip is open to all IRO Members (and

also to those who are interested in joining), including your partner or guest. IRO Members can book their place via the website, nonmembers can book places by contacting Martin Bonnington by email: sw.events@railwayoperators.co.uk For information on all South West and Wales Area events contact Martin Bonnington by email:  sw.events@railwayoperators.co.uk South East Area 30 January 2015: Golden Whistle Awards 2015 The IRO is joining forces with Modern Railways’ Fourth Friday Club to celebrate operators who have performed well over the past year. This year’s key note speaker is Andrew Munden, Operations and Safety Director at Chiltern Railways. There is a conference in the morning before the lunch and awards ceremony with papers on operating topics. Details of the conference will be advertised on the Fourth Friday club website. Tickets are available from Chris Shilling (chris@shillingmedia.co.uk or 01778 421550). For further information on the IRO South East Area contact Jonathan Leithead at se.events@railwayoperators.co.uk

More details of area events are listed on the website at : www.railwayoperators.co.uk/whats-on

December 2014 Page 45


London Underground has adopted the new Pandrol FASTCLIP ‘FE’ System. Using the ‘FE’ system has allowed the Track Partnership, led by Balfour Beatty, to use a New Track Construction machine to achieve the highest levels of production efficiency through automation of the clipping system. Using this level of automation, 1200m of renewed track was installed over the period of a weekend. FASTCLIP ‘FE’ provides fast and reliable automation of the clipping process, with a range of machines capable of clipping speeds of up to 70 sleepers per minute. See the London Underground Type '916P1502' sleepers with the Pandrol Fastclip FE system at the Network Rail ‘RAIL LIVE 2014’ outdoor rail event from the 18th to the 19th June.

Page 46 December 2014


BTPA

May the Force be with you Chair of the BTPA Millie Banerjee issues an invitation to the industry to work even more closely with the BTP, to ensure it is a key partner in the railways’ planning process

A

n interesting email arrived in my inbox last month. It was a series of extracts from a round of interviews we did with Toc and Foc managing directors and its arrival was timely, as I’d started penning a fresh set of commitments to industry following pledges made at our annual stakeholder event in September. The extract was a series of key findings from senior representatives calling on the Authority to work more closely with them to better understand their business planning and needs. It was a useful prompt when writing my letter as I had talked at length at the event about wanting to demonstrate a real commitment to improving our way of working with the rail industry. That is why one of the commitments I have made is to personally visit senior representatives from the rail industry over the course of the next few months – to ensure the Authority has an enhanced understanding of each organisation’s business needs and strategic ambition. This is just one of the many commitments I have made to support the BTP and ensure rail industry needs are fed into the targets we set for the Force. The others I will touch on throughout this column - including a request for some commitment from the rail world. I talked briefly in my last column (October 2014) about a consultation we were running with Toc and Foc security leads. The survey has since closed and I can report that on the whole the results were very positive - with 92 per cent of respondents saying they were satisfied or very satisfied with the work of the BTPA and the BTP. But the consultation also highlighted the pressures on, or expectations of, the BTP in terms of having to work within a commercial context and understanding the many individual needs of each of the ‘customers’ who contribute to the cost of running a national policing service. I have said it before and I will continue to keep saying it.

The BTP is a national force, not simply an aggregate of the requirement at any one time of the needs of individual Toc’s, Foc’s, TFL, Network Rail or the public. As a police force the BTP has specific duties, obligations and powers that it is required – duty bound indeed – to fulfil. But above all its officers take a vow to protect life. That said – I fully believe that in order to deliver the best service you must have a good understanding of the needs of the people you serve. And that is where we come in. As the body responsible for setting the Forces’ policing targets, the Authority wants to ensure we have a firm understanding of each organisation’s business and are feeding this information into the decisions we make when relevant. Two-way engagement In fact many of the commitments I have made, which will be rolled out in full in the next financial year, rely heavily on better communication and developing opportunities for two-way engagement in order to achieve greater transparency

around the budgeting and planning process of our organisation, and allowing stakeholders to influence the targets we set for the Force. Industry research and consultation has told us that is what the rail industry wants and that is what we are striving to deliver. Local policing plan consultation exercises which kicked off in November are an ideal opportunity for the rail community to share with us its policing needs at route level. These consultations will feed into the 2015 -16 policing targets that will be set for the Force. But I also see them as an area not only to understand some of the constraints rail companies work under but as an opportunity for us to set jointly-owned objectives. Here we can share some of the tough decisions and trade-offs we all need to make. So while I am reiterating our commitment to you, we are also asking for some commitment from the rail industry in order for us all to benefit more greatly. For instance, during 2015 -16 the railway is expected to grow significantly December 2014 Page 47


BTPA

in terms of infrastructure and passenger journeys; reductions in crime and disruption, together with a more confident travelling public, will be key enablers to this expansion. Demand for BTP resources will increase as passenger numbers continue to grow at a rate of five to seven per cent a year. New infrastructure developments could lead to greater disruption when incidents occur as well as a higher level of overall calls for service. The focus on disruption will become increasingly important as delay costs and the associated impact increases. Increased passenger numbers using the network has resulted in many key stations being redeveloped, stimulating regeneration and investment in commercial outlets. Therefore we need to get in on your conversations about changes to infrastructure early. Retail theft – inviting BTP to provide advice Let’s explore the increase of shopping outlets at stations for example. Retail theft has risen nationally across all police forces by six per cent despite a reduction in overall crime by 15 per cent. BTP has identified that offences are mainly concentrated at larger hub stations such as Manchester Piccadilly or London Waterloo and Leeds, which account for nearly half (47 per cent) of shoplifting offences.

Page 48 December 2014

All of these stations have dedicated shopping outlets where in some cases the floor layout makes outlets more vulnerable to theft of higher value items such as perfume. Busier stations also have a knock on impact in terms of increase of pick pocketing and terrorism threats. Again, we need to be getting involved in conversations about these things early to ensure BTP is a key partner in the railways’ planning process. BTP must surely be invited to provide advice on planning for these developments and we,

as the Authority, must explain the likely requirement for resources and associated costs. Early figures are already suggesting that disruption will again be a national priority for the BTP next year - a target which is being made even more challenging due to an increase in trespass. The solution to this problem? Joint working This is about investment and prevention to stop people getting on to the tracks in


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BTPA

Senior representatives from the rail industry show support for the BTPA “Over the last ten years the BTPA in concert with the BTP and the rail industry has transformed policing on the nations railways. We look forward to working with you to build on these improvements so that everyone using the railway feels safe and secure.” Mark Carne, CEO, Network Rail

the first place. When you look at research done by the BTP and Network rail, which suggests most people who enter the tracks and subsequently cause delays are suicidal, have mental health problems and are under the age of 25, it very quickly becomes apparent that this is not something the BTP can solve in isolation - targets or no targets. The Force is running a number of operations and joint initiatives to respond to these issues but I would invite more of you to work with us even if it’s to suggest opportunities for further engagement. Recent statistics for cable theft, which show an impressive 80 per cent decrease in the crime since we made it a national priority in 2011, demonstrates what we can achieve together. Helping us to understand passengers and their needs better is something we are also keen to develop and I see the members of the rail industry as the keepers of a lot of information that we could really benefit from. I invite you to contact me to share any thoughts on how we could collaborate on this. In short - I am committed to delivering the best possible policing of Britain’s railways by working together. Before signing off for the New Year and wishing you all a wonderful holiday, I want to draw your attention to some messages of support I was delighted to read from colleagues who showed their support for the Force and the Authority which is celebrating its ten year anniversary. We are using this milestone as an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to stakeholders to continue shaping progress together and we welcome the support of our colleagues in the rail industry. To view Millie’s commitments and other news from the BTPA visit www.btpa.police.uk and click on our news section or drop Millie a line at millie. banerjee@btp.pnn.police.uk

“Passenger Focus is pleased to see that BTPA’s overarching strategy and policy plans are underpinned by joint research to help focus on issues that are of genuine interest to passengers. Targets based on reducing crime levels, reducing policerelated disruption, increasing the visibility of staff in the evening and reducing public order offences are outcomes that passengers want to see. The more that industry strategy reflects passengers’ interests, the better the railway will become.” Anthony Smith, chief executive, Passenger Focus “We are world class – and world leaders – in reducing disruption related to fatalities, and our stakeholders want us to be first on scene to all incidents as we are the trusted leaders in these, often traumatic, situations. All this has been achieved during the tenure of the British Transport Police Authority and this would not have been possible without its continuing support and belief in the Force.” Paul Crowther, chief constable of BTP “Congratulations on your 10th anniversary. The Authority has provided excellent leadership to ensure that the railway system is effectively and efficiently policed, and that passengers feel safe and secure when travelling. The Authority will, I’m sure, continue to build on the successes of its first 10 years, rising to the challenges of delivering the best police services while controlling costs within the resources available.” Minister of State for Transport Baroness Kramer “With recent controversial changes made to the governance of police forces in the UK, the continued stewardship of the BTP by a highly professional and representative Authority is a great strength for the industry. The BTP itself has always been integral to our railway yet in the last decade its role, status and value has continued to be challenged. The response has been magnificent. Under Ian Johnston its role and profile was reaffirmed. Under Andy Trotter the drive for efficiency and alignment, delivered and underlined its value. Under Paul Crowther its structure and objectives are so closely aligned to those of the wider railway that the Force could not be in better shape to deliver. With the cries often heard for greater re-integration of our industry, our respective teams today are working ever more closely or more effectively, underlining the progress that has been made.” Andrew Cooper, managing director, Cross Country December 2014 Page 51


The notion that our train operating companies are franchisees is for me slightly derisory. They are very, very important businesses delivering public services on government’s behalf

T

he Office of Rail Passenger Services (ORPS) has been re-named Passenger Services. Is this quite a recent change and why did it happen? It is yes. It all just sounded a little bit official, a bit like ‘Here come the Tolkien Army’. But more importantly, I wanted the word ‘Passenger’ right at the front of our title so it would remind everybody what we’re here for. What does your role entail and what do you hope to achieve? My role brings together all of the passenger-facing elements of the DfT’s Rail Executive. So for the first time in quite a long while we have, in one place, all of those components of our structure that deal with a whole range of passenger issues – from rolling stock and day-to-day contract management through to passenger railway franchise design and fares and ticketing – and that has principally allowed us to take a more ‘whole system’ view in addressing the challenges that passengers face today. Having said all of that, my first challenge is to build the organisation and we’re only in day two of it, so we’ve got to put it all together and make it work first. The team is about 150 people so it’s a sizeable organisation but we’ve got quite a vacancy gap and we’re in the process of recruiting. You’re a very successful private sector consultant and now you’re leading this agency. Do you feel like your wings are clipped or you can do as good a job as you would anywhere? I’m not just a consultant; I spent most of my career building businesses, either in the rail industry or outside of it. One of those more recent businesses was a consulting firm which I’ve sold my equity in to release myself to do this job. And there’s no doubt that in business, particularly if you are the owner, you have more freedoms. But you don’t have complete freedom - you’ve got shareholders, a board if it’s a decent-sized company, and customers, and there are plenty of regulations these days that constrain you. The department does have additional layers of bureaucracy, but I mean that in a literal, not negative sense, and that’s in part because the Civil Page 52 April 2014

Peter Wilkinson, managing director of Passenger Services, a section of the DfT’s Rail Executive, spoke to Lorna Slade about his new position and what he hopes to achieve, and why he wants to get away from the word ‘franchising’

Peter


Wilkinson April 2014 Page 53


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Page 54 December 2014


RAIL PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

Service is 200 years old and Whitehall is made up of many different departments which bring their own requirements and challenges. So for example we work day-to-day and hand in glove, I hope, with colleagues in Treasury - we have to as there’s an awful lot of money going through the rail funding cycle. So there are always those sorts of interfaces you have to work through but at the moment I don’t feel overly constrained. It’s very easy inside the civil service to impose constraints on yourself if you want to and much harder to say: ‘I’m just going to get things done’, but you can do that, and there are enough senior people here who think in a likeminded way; I’ve got an excellent Permanent Secretary in Philip Rutnam, and an extremely supportive and talented Director General in Clare Moriarty, so we’ve got a good team around us and people who want to make good progress.

All rail photographs courtesy of Peter Wilkinson

The government talked about a Rail Delivery Authority in 2016, is this agency a transition to that, and a transitional position for you? I don’t see it as a transition and that’s really a matter for other people. I certainly can’t predict the future and what may come after another election. If you were to ask me personally what I think about it, I’ve had the privilege of serving in the industry in various shapes and organisational forms, and the one big lesson I took from all of that is it’s not structure that addresses the industry’s challenges, it’s people and it’s leadership. These for me are almost irrelevant to the structure. If you have the right vision and the right team of people around you, and that vision is customer-facing – one that’s been built with your marketplace and sympathetic to the needs of your market – and you pursue that – there’d be something really wrong if you completely fail. But I understand the point you’re making. I am committed to being a part of the DfT’s Rail Executive and its team under Clare. I think there’s a lot of advantage to the organisation I run being inside the Rail Executive and inside the DfT, and some of that is to do with effective decision making. So if we need to get something done really quickly to help one of our partners in the industry or to support customers who need a change in the railway delivery, we can do that fairly efficiently, principally because we’re very close to ministers here and I’m very close to other senior civil servants whose support I might need to get that decision made. If you remove that it just becomes a little bit harder and clumsier. And that was my observation in previous industry structural guises. How do you see franchising developing in the future? First of all I’d really like to get away from this word ‘franchising’. We’re not Burger King. The rail industry is both really sophisticated and complex but also on some level fundamentally very simple. It’s an industry that’s about providing resources and assets to meet two principal purposes. One is to carry people and freight in your country and to support the local towns, cities and regions with economic development – railways are a very important economic asset. But secondly, a strong, healthy and competitive railway system helps any nation with its global competitive position. Britain, just like any other country, is operating in a global market and a rail system is vital to international competitiveness. So for me this concept of franchising is a difficult one because if you look at each and every railway on its own merit, they are all very different businesses with very different drivers of demand. You start with the passenger market, you need to look at why people are travelling, where to and what kinds of people they are. You also need to understand why people aren’t using trains and why we’re not making the industry more accessible to them. A lot of people are put off the railway because of what they read about it rather than what whey actually experience of it. Many because they have some sort of disability or infirmity, or they’ve got small children or luggage – and the industry has made great strides to address

Peter Wilkinson

those challenges, which isn’t necessarily in people’s perception – although we haven’t gone far enough by any means. So it’s about really getting under the surface of a market and the market economics, the market drivers, the drivers for demand for rail; about understanding what towns and cities want from a railway for their own economic and development plans; looking at what industry and residency is growing up around a railway; what the metropolitan urban regional regeneration plans are in any market. And if you work from that place backwards, you get to a point where you can start to make decisions about how to better serve the needs of that market. And it’s only then, at that point, that you start to really think about the type of delivery contract you want to engage in with a partner in the private sector. And they’re not franchisees. This notion that our train operating companies are franchisees is for me slightly derisory. They are very, very important

businesses delivering public services on government’s behalf. And they work very hard, in the main, to espouse the values of public service in the way that any government organisation might, so they are actually Service Delivery Partners. It really matters to me to get that language into the construct because if they’re not partners and they’re merely contractors, and they’re merely serving up the next burger, quite honestly we’re not going to deliver a railway fit for purpose for this country. And the railways are different in each part of the UK. You cannot compare an Intercity railway with a London and south east commuter one – they’re two completely different businesses driven by completely different market economics and customer needs. So a franchise implies a one model fits all approach and it just isn’t the case. And I take it the Toc’s will enjoy that new way of thinking? Will they be receptive to it? I hope so! That’s the world I come from and I have the hugest respect for them. I can tell you – being the MD of any Toc in this country is one of the hardest jobs in Britain today. December 2014 Page 55


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RAIL PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

It’s exceptionally demanding; it’s day-in-day-out hard graft. You’ve got an enormous resource base to care for, you’ve got a workforce who are looking to you for leadership; you’ve got a railway that doesn’t always function for all sorts of reasons quite often beyond your own control. And it’s a really complex big and difficult job that you have to do exceptionally well and then get up in the morning and go do it all again. There’s no option for example to think ‘I can take a year to get to this place’. Forget it. Every day matters, every journey matters to passengers, and most people’s rating of the industry is only as good as the last journey they took. So for Toc MD’s to be concerned for their market position and their revenue in that kind of a context is quite a hard ask, and I have huge regard for them. So I hope they do believe we see them as partners rather than as burger distributors. Are there too many franchises or too few? Truthfully I don’t know the answer to that question. I wouldn’t like to see many fewer, and I think the reality is that we already have too many very large franchises. If I look at the WCML and at what is now the GTR franchise, these are vast businesses so if you have just one of those on your balance sheet as a transport owning group, that’s a huge single risk to be carrying and therefore your capacity to take on other passenger railway contracts might be constrained. I don’t think that’s sensible in managing the long-term health and condition of a market for passenger railways and I would prefer to see a market in which you have a good mixture of not super large, but large, medium-sized and small franchises, because then obviously an owning group can carry more on their balance sheet, but also, particularly when you have one or two smaller franchises in the mix, you will attract different sorts of entities to come into that market and look at those businesses as possibly first steps into it. And I think the barrier to market entry is very high at the moment, because of franchise size in some part. Will you keep GTR that way? I don’t know. Again that franchise exists because of a set of circumstances. As you know we’ve been building the Thameslink core and that’s a very substantial engineering undertaking involving a number of major rebuilds along

Peter Wilkinson

the route, plus the introduction of a totally new and superb fleet of trains of the kind we’ve never tried in this country before. And we’re going to operate 24 of those every hour through the Thameslink core corridor – that’s almost a London underground-style service on a core heavy rail system, which is a remarkable achievement by any scale. To make that happen we had to organise the railways in such a way as to optimise the system while we’re doing a lot of engineering work, and to protect our market through that period of change and continue to preserve passenger journey opportunities. But it’s also an opportunity for us to look at the operational and diagramming efficiency of that corridor by bringing in a number of bits of other franchises. That doesn’t mean to say that it’ll stay like that. Once we’ve got this railway up and running and we’re used to how it works, we’ll probably take another look at GTR because there are many parts of it that operate in the south or north end of the route but don’t touch London, so there may be opportunities to downsize that franchise again. So it exists for a purpose, and this comes back to my point that no railway is a franchise, they’re all very different at any given moment in time. We have given GTR a seven year term and that will get us through the majority of the work that needs to be done to make Thameslink work. What of other rail models globally and in Europe? I understand Spain and Germany are franchising I’ve had the privilege of working in and seeing rail systems in many parts of the world and I can absolutely assure you they are not tendering passenger railways in the way we do in this country. This country is still today the only truly liberalised rail market in the world outside of Japan and possibly one or two of the Scandinavian countries. In Spain and Germany there is some concessioning of passenger railways; in the main they’re gross cost contracts so there isn’t a revenue incentive. Generally in Europe so far they have all been very small concessions compared to those we offer in this country, and those markets have very dominant national state-owned operators that either compete for or are granted those concessions on long-term contracts – here we are with a truly liberalised railway that has unlocked fantastic potential for passengers, some of which is to do with factors that would have happened anyway, but a good deal is due to the fact we now have service delivery partners

December 2014 Page 57


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Page 58 December 2014

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RAIL PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

working with us who are very market-focused businesses. Their whole raison d’être is to think about their passengers, their market, their geography, their routes and their passenger journey needs, and play to them. We’ve taken the sectorisation model developed within British Rail to a level that has just not happened anywhere else in Europe. And in this country we have a number of national railway operators present who are truly very welcome and bring a lot of value-added to the market, but if I look in the reverse direction it’s not always easy to see where the reciprocal opportunity is for our firms to fish in those markets, and that’s a slightly strange thing given that actually the premise for a lot of our industry construct and structure is founded in European law and regulation, which we’ve adopted and it seems to me countries in Europe spend nearly all of their time resisting and fighting. The real sadness for me though is all the lost opportunity in the European rail market. We’ve achieved a lot of innovation in our own market here in the UK which I don’t necessarily see in others; you can always argue that the TGV network or the Spanish high speed network is an innovation of sorts but that’s not really what I’m getting at; that’s just very big investment to produce very high speed rail routes and we’re embarking on the same ourselves. There could be such a fantastic European market for rail, and such a competing market that I can only believe would benefit the towns, cities, regions and countries all over Europe, because there would be this interchange, exchange and trade in innovation that I think is missing in Europe today. You’ve had a stellar and long-term career within rail – in your opinion what’s the industry getting right what is it getting wrong these days? I wouldn’t describe it as stellar. I’ve been very lucky to have worked underneath and for some remarkable people and continue to do so. I really value my working relationship with my colleagues here – Clare Moriarty and Philip Rutnam in particular. These are extremely forward-thinking and open-minded industrious people who really welcome the opportunity to positively do things differently. And that’s been my good fortune. I found that working at London Underground with Denis Tunnicliffe – a remarkable individual who picked up a railway after the King’s Cross fire, which was horrific on any level. He led change from the front and really laid the foundations for the truly spectacular system we have today. So I’ve had the privilege of working for some great

Peter Wilkinson

people and that’s where I’ve drawn my inspiration from. I think the industry is coping with enormous complexity remarkably well. We’re going through a period of substantial technical change; having come from an era of wheeltappers and shunters and some fairly basic engineering principles and designs, we’re now moving into a world of high speed, much higher traffic density, very new signalling and control systems, computerisation of many of the interfaces that control and operate our railway, and of course we’re dealing with growth on a scale we could never have anticipated 10 years ago and that’s volume growth, not fair box growth, at the very least around about six per cent and sometimes touching up to 11 per cent in some parts of the country. As well as that we’re seeing the effects of climate change, which is something that isn’t discussed enough. However we are absolutely not paying enough attention to what passengers tell us. We don’t do anything like enough mystery shopping of our own and we rely too much on watchdogs to inform us about what passengers want. I’d like to see much more local focus on railways and much more outreach into society. The railway always used to have a very strong bond and relationship with the communities that it served. It employed from and retired people into those communities; it sourced all sorts of skills and engineering and widgets from those communities, and we’ve lost touch with a lot of that. I also think the issue of safety can be helped by outreach into the community, so if we don’t want children to be injured on the railway, go out into the schools and talk to them about why it’s important not to play on railways – don’t just put lots of noticeboards and signs up. So I’d like to see a lot more local market focus and a lot more corporate social responsibility in the system. What about the way Toc’s communicate with passengers? I think many of them think Twitter is enough to bring a sense of connection… Yes, for me it’s so mechanical, it’s not intuitive. You only have to read the press to realise there is a public concern about the privatised industry model and I think in part it’s fuelled by a belief that the railway isn’t necessarily as in touch with people and their needs as it should be. And there’s this notion of profiteering, which, by the way, is a complete myth: I can absolutely assure you that very few companies in any other industry sector would get out of bed for the sort of margins that some train operating companies are truly generating.

‘‘...an awful lot of folklore has crept into this argument around profit. I actually want Toc’s to be profitable, I want them to feel motivated...’ But an awful lot of folklore has crept into this argument around profit. I actually want Toc’s to be profitable, I want them to feel motivated, I want them to be excited to get out of bed and do the hard job day-in-day-out and to feel rewarded for that. Because it’s their profit, that, in exchange for which we would have to buy a superstructure if we were to renationalise the industry, to run it. We’re actually buying their superstructure and I can assure you they’re far more efficient than anything we would create as a public entity. So I think there is some concern among the public, partly because fares are relatively expensive compared to other European railways and there’s this sense that we have corporate concerns running public services. And one of the ways of mitigating that is to see Toc’s behaving with a public service ethic, getting out into society and communicating with local communities – that December 2014 Page 59


Page 60 December 2014


RAIL PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

would help take the temperature down and create public confidence that the needs of public service are being placed before the needs of shareholders. I interviewed a Toc manager who felt that a virtual screen running at a station 24/7 was as good as having a member of staff to talk to, albeit within workday hours. I’m not sure I agree with that. You have said you regard staff cuts as a ‘false economy’. Can you say more? I think that’s borne of a lack of understanding of how railways function at a passenger level. There’s a place for both actually. You want exceptionally good passenger information, direct to you in any media and form and you want it 24 hours a day. You want to give people as much information as possible to help them plan their journeys under normal circumstances and when there is disruption so they can make alternative choices or plan around a disrupted railway. And the only way to do that is to use the technology and media available to you. But actually at stations and on trains I agree with you, I think there has always been a strong argument for not just a wellstaffed railway but a railway staffed with very well-motivated people, so there is this genuine concern for passenger needs. Partly it’s a safety issue, and I totally support the trades unions on this point; I think they’re right about the risks of destaffing railways and right to be concerned about the safety of passengers – particularly stations that are very crowded. There is always this slight anxiety and nervousness about getting on that train and you’re stuck in a crush of people. To be honest I want staff at platforms helping people and reassuring them ‘You know what, let it go. There’s another one just two minutes down the track so don’t rush, or crush and cool it folks’. For me, front line staff are the heroes of this industry, they’re the people who make it work, not people like me in head offices and places; this is a nonsense, we’re just petty bureaucrats. The people who make the railway work every day are very modest, very ordinary people, often not terribly well paid, in parts of this railway that are incredibly congested. And the thought that we would have some agenda to take away, from a public service industry, that level of human commitment seems to me to be just wrong on every level. Railways exist in part to employ people, and what a great place to put them to great use, to give them a mission for life. It’s a great place to have a career and you see these wonderful people coming through the system – they come into the industry wondering why on earth they picked the railways, probably thinking it was the only place that was offering a job at the moment, and they stay with it because they grow a love for it. And it is an industry you fall in love with, no doubt about it. Talking to you is a refreshing experience as you agree that it’s not all about the virtual interface. I do want virtual screens! But I also want to humanise rail. I want a railway that’s a human system –run by human beings for human beings. I want a system that’s cognitive and intuitive, and that functions because of people not despite them. We all have baggage don’t we and for me, partly because of my background, railways are a public service first and foremost and an economic asset second. They are very serious systems that require maturity and real leadership to make work and that doesn’t come from computers and technology. That comes from people.

Peter Wilkinson

‘I want a system that’s cognitive and intuitive, and that functions because of people not despite them’ You are extremely well-regarded in the industry. What do you think you’ve brought to the table at the DfT? I really am slightly anxious about that because it takes too much away from the work that people like Philip and Clare are doing to take a large part of the civil service and make it a beacon of leadership inside Whitehall, and they are achieving in that space. Clare is a woman in the rail industry who has gone on to lead from the front. She has worked exceptionally hard to get out and know this industry very well, and she has come into it at a time of some very, very, difficult challenges. She arrived as I did literally after the procurement difficulties we had with the West Coast franchise competition two years ago. It was a very dark time with some really serious challenges to face and she navigated those with absolute aplomb. Truly I sit behind those individuals. I wonder if you could talk a bit about your private life, your hobbies and interests. I live in London, near Borough market. I moved there at a time when probably it was the last place on earth you’d want to go and live but I like urbanity, I enjoy the urban lifestyle and space very much. I’m married to a Viennese girl, Renate, and she lives with our children, twins Tom and Marnie, aged nine, in Vienna. So I jump on an Easy Jet out of Gatwick on a Friday night, not every weekend because of the pressures of the job. Vienna is a great city – I don’t have much family and my wife does so we just elected that that it was the right place to bring the kids up. I love being in the mountains so I spend as much time as I can in them. An urbanite who loves the mountains? Yes you either do one or the other. For me it’s about the challenges. I enjoy the challenge of living in the city, but mountains present their own challenges and are very extreme places. I also have a great passion for motorcycle racing and raced semi-professionally for many years. It was a sport that was very good to me and I was privileged and lucky enough to be able to travel with it and meet an awful lot of wonderful people in different cultures. I would never, from my background, have had the opportunity to do that and I like to give all I can to it. I grew up in the North and in the Midlands. Many different places – my father worked all over the country so we moved around a lot, so I don’t really have a place that you would call home particularly. I guess for me the City of London is the nearest I have to a home city and it’s been an incredibly good city to me; allowing me to grow, develop and make my mistakes and my successes; I owe London a great debt and I will repay it. Finally, do you have a message for Toc managers? They key thing for me is ‘Love your markets. Love your passengers. Get to know your markets and get to know them really well, and don’t ignore those parts of your markets that might appear to be on the fringes of your interest – it’s often in the fringes that you find the seeds of real innovation and new growth – and go explore them.’ December 2014 Page 61


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Consulting

Small is beautiful Smaller consulting firms like FCP have played a key role in shaping the future of UK rail. Matthew Crosse discusses some of the benefits and challenges firms like his face

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hile the rail industry depends on large engineering consultancies to create and develop major projects and enable their delivery, smaller consultancies have an important place in the rail industry too. These firms often play an integral part in setting strategic direction, developing business cases, enabling effective procurements and providing expert resources for project delivery teams. More widely, they are essential to the structure of the industry. First Class Partnerships (FCP) stands out as a successful management consultancy in the rail sector. Although modest in size, FCP is diverse in its skill set, with considerable depth of senior industry expertise. It advises and supports most parts of the rail market, working at all levels to drive value and typically help solve complex problems. FCP is influential too, providing strategic advice at very senior levels, for example, contributing to the McNulty and Brown reports. A hallmark of its success has been its focus on good strategy, providing challenge and seeking always to improve commercial and financial outcomes for its public and private sector clients, leveraging the many years of practical hands-on experience of the team. In general, large and small firms exist together well, mutually supporting each other on a project-by-project basis. Clients recognise this too. They enjoy the comfort of a big name standing behind their project business cases, yet also like the healthy ‘challenge’ role of smaller independents. Sometimes it is only possible to engage smaller firms via sub-contracting. If procurement markups can be avoided, and the practical arrangements can be made to work efficiently, this is a good solution. FCP has done remarkably well. It has established itself as the ‘go to’ consultancy for problem solving, or where in-depth practical operational and commercial insight is required. It was established shortly after rail privatisation and successfully advised clients across the sector over the past 16 years, confidently coursing through the various changes and challenges the industry has faced. This is undoubtedly because of the rich experience of its senior partners, which often enables a return to sound

operational principles that have been tried and tested over many decades. This happened after Hatfield and Potters Bar rail accidents and the consequent change to the industry structure, particularly when Railtrack folded and Network Rail was spawned. Led by experience The firm was started by John Nelson, a well-known industry figure, previously chief executive of Network South East, with responsibility for all London regional rail services. Nelson totally understands complex rail networks, why

they go wrong, and importantly how to improve them. As a result, from the outset, FCP skills were in demand as the industry responded to change. During the last 13 years Peter Wilkinson has been at the helm as managing partner undertaking a number of pivotal roles in the industry including advising on the West Coast refranchising failure and in subsequently reshaping the Department’s approach to franchising. Peter has now joined the DfT’s Rail Executive as its Passenger Services managing director and is again in a pivotal role characteristically putting passengers right at the centre of railway thinking. This is a testament to

the quality of individuals within FCP. FCP’s focus is very much on quality rather than quantity, with its team often in demand, advising at board level or in the rarified spaces of government. Recent placements include senior interim roles on the current batch of re-franchising procurements. FCP has also grown its overseas advisory mandates, currently advising senior transport officials in Toronto, where a senior partner Michael Schabas, challenged the thinking of Toronto Metrolinx’ 2008 Big Move Investment Programme. This resulted in a substantially revised programme based

on Schabas’ strategic thinking, offering more services for less investment. FCP has a team working in Canada today. The firm has also recently undertaken work in Germany, where it has advised an international train operations group; in Finland, supporting the government on its rail liberalization agenda; and in Africa, developing the first line of the Lagos metro building on other previous mandates in South Africa. The challenges of frameworks With an increasing move to the use of framework agreements, where clients are able to ‘call-off’ advice as and when December 2014 Page 63


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it is needed, this presents a challenge for smaller consultancies because of the high entry hurdles. This risks excluding key resources that complex schemes often require. Sometimes smaller specialist firms bring the most relevant expertise, born out of many years of practical and highly relevant knowledge. For UK public sector bidding opportunities, clients usually set exacting prequalification criteria as part of their pre-selection and shortlisting process. Small consulting firms often face de-minimis financial thresholds to get onto tender lists. So in the case of typical long-term consultancy frameworks, it is essential that good relationships exist with larger consultancies on frameworks or the frameworks in place are flexible enough to ensure access to the right people. For the major project frameworks, the industry needs big firms as they have the capacity to take on larger mandates requiring big teams of advisers to undertake large amounts of analysis, and are able to access other ‘in-house’ specialist such as tax. However, often the depth of skills in key areas, for example, rolling stock and rail operations, may be limited, which is where the expertise of individuals within FCP is well-placed to add real value.

Another prequalification hurdle is around so called ‘hygiene’ tests. Today, all firms (no matter what size) must have an appropriate policy to promote equality and diversity. This test is quite straight forward. But for other requirements, for example, quality, environment and health, safety and welfare, most medium and larger-sized firms have mature accredited company management systems (to ISO9001, ISO14001 standards etc). These are sometimes critical ‘must have’ certificates for bidders. It is impractical for smaller firms to embrace the length and breadth of all these systems, and they usually can’t justify appointment of full time officers for such roles, even though they may already be working to the best practice principles of these systems. For example, all of FCP’s team support responsible environmental stewardship, seeking to improve year-on-year. And where required, they would also promote and advise clients on the environmental impacts (and mitigation options) of key decisions. But, compared with a large corporate concern, there is fairly limited scope in a small office, or client office to make a significant difference, nor merit in seeking ISO14001. The good news is that there are signs that things are changing. The

DfT has recognised that having just a few large framework firms available, greatly restricts their hand. It is now in the process of moving to a multi-tiered framework, where small, medium and large firms will be listed, enabling choice of the type of firm, according to the need. So, for major long-term project mandates, the large firms still compete for the work and, with the hurdles appropriately set lower, smaller specialist firms can bid for shorter more specialised assignments. As one of the more successful smaller rail managements firms, FCP is optimistic about the future. Its global reach into markets which were previously thought tough to enter has improved. And at home, the franchising market continues apace, with signs that the big framework clients are moving to accommodate more smaller firms like FCP. Based on its long track record, FCP is likely to be around for another 16 years. So in 2030, it could be approaching its fifth batch of UK rail franchising procurements.

Matthew Crosse is a partner at First Class Partnerships

Visit: www.fcpworld.net

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We provide specialist support focusing on a number of key tasks and processes to develop growth opportunities through new products, market sectors and, where required, between multiple organisations, ultimately providing the creation of long-term value for an organisation from a customers, markets, and relationships perspective. Our rail experience has been developed over more than 15 years in the industry. Over this time we have acquired excellent insight into the industry and a network of high level contacts within it that stretches from the Department for Transport (Dft) through to key OEM’s in the supply chain, covering train operating companies (TOC’s), Freight Operating Companies (FOC’s), Rolling Stock owning companies (ROSCO’s) and the technical service consultancies to the industry. Due to the complex and historic nature of the Railways in the UK, our knowledge, experience and relationships within this industry will help companies to maximise their effectiveness in the development and entry to opportunities within the UK rail industry.

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Consulting

Improving diesel efficiency Diesels will be with us for a long time to come and they need to be better says Shane McCauley, who looks at how this can be achieved in such a highly fragmented environment

D

espite the current focus on big-ticket capital projects, Great Britain’s rail network remains a big consumer of diesel. Many of its regions may long have been electrified, but there remain significant parts beyond the current reach of overhead lines or conductor rails. Faced with this patchwork of electrification extending to around a third of the network, it is hardly surprising that a large proportion of regional and intercity passenger services, as well as almost all freight movements, are provided using diesel traction. The imperative both to reduce national carbon dioxide emissions and improve urban air quality has placed a renewed emphasis on improving the efficiency of diesel usage on rail as well as on road. The very success of parts of the rail network that rely upon diesel also serves to compound the problem – as demonstrated in the somewhat heated parliamentary debate earlier in the year surrounding the proposed transfer of rolling stock from TransPennine Express to Chiltern Railways. In short, diesels will be with us for a long time to come, and they need to be better. In addition to improving capacity utilization, the rail industry needs to explore nextgeneration fleet technologies that can reduce emissions, improve the passenger experience and save fuel through more efficient powertrain and driveline systems.

A further complication of the GB rail network that distinguishes it from its more vertically integrated international comparators is its commercial separation between the rolling stock leasing companies, passenger service franchisees, and the ownership, management and

maintenance of the infrastructure and permanent way. This fragmentation of ownership and operational control inevitably represents a challenge to co-ordinated efforts to introduce new technologies where, for example, they cut across commercial boundaries or where the timescales required for a return on investment exceed the commercial parameters of the train operating franchises. A valuable external perspective In such a highly fragmented environment, the use of an external source of expert consulting advice can be an extremely compelling proposition. Ricardo’s rail team has been involved in a range of high profile technology programmes in recent years, ranging from assisting GE Transportation with back-to-back fuel consumption testing of the new Class 70 locomotive against the Class 66 which had previously dominated the UK rail freight market, to advanced research assistance to Canada’s CN Rail with its highly publicised natural gas powered locomotive project. In the area of diesel multiple units (DMUs) that form such a large part of the UK rail fleet, however, one of the highest profile projects was carried out for the Department for Transport. In mid-2011 Ricardo was asked to investigate the further practical and commercially attractive options that could be deployed in order to improve diesel fuel efficiency on the rails. The study was in particular intended to explore technologies from non-rail sectors that might be applied to diesel powered rolling stock, either retro-fitted to parts of the existing fleet or included in the specification of new vehicles; in each case with the objective of improving fuel efficiency and reducing operating costs. Separately the study was also tasked with assessing past successes and failures in the application of new technologies within the GB rail sector, with the aim of identifying common critical success factors that might form the basis of future implementations. This is exactly the sort of challenge – based on the evaluation of rail-specific issues and evaluating potential solutions based on potential market-ready technologies from sectors ranging from road vehicles to power generation, and

mining and construction equipment – where a consultancy can provide significant added value. Technology packages Based on analysis of available technologies, five candidate technology packages were generated for possible implementation on older DMU vehicles. Each of these technology packages was assessed in terms of its potential percentage improvements in fuel consumption over the intercity, local and freight duty cycles, based on an assumed five per cent annual increase in the cost of diesel fuel for the foreseeable future. The costs of development, implementation and incremental changes to maintenance procedures were calculated based on an assumed batch size of 200 DMUs, representing a realistic scale for cross-industry collaboration – an assumption which in itself speaks volumes about one of the biggest impediments to future development. By combining these data sets, estimates of the likely payback period were possible for each of the selected technology packages. Some clear opportunities were identified in the report of this work which was published in early 2012, and many of these are already finding their way into DMU fleets on an ad-hoc basis. Longer franchises spur innovation One of the key lessons of the DMU fleetscale study, was that true innovation needs to be carried out in an environment in which commercial investments can be December 2014 Page 67


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made over a reasonably long time horizon with projects executed at fleet scale, so that upfront R&D costs and risks can be appropriately shared. Government and industry appear to be moving in this direction with longer duration and larger franchises being increasingly the norm. The more that this type of long-term vision can be encouraged, then the more useful the perspective of the external consultant will also be in adapting the best available technology for rail applications. While rail may have lagged behind

other land-based heavy duty diesel sectors over recent decades in terms of fuel efficiency and emissions, the potential increasingly exists to push further and allow rail to lead other sectors in technology development and implementation. In addition to exploring avenues for structural light-weighting appropriate to the robustness and durability parameters of the railway, one of the key areas for further work must surely be in the effective harvesting and re-use of energy otherwise dissipated in braking. Ricardo has been developing high speed flywheel technology for a number of years, originally based on the early introduction of kinetic energy recovery systems (KERS) to Formula 1. The latest generation of this technology – known as TorqStor – is ideally suited to the DMU environment, where significant fuel savings could be realized on frequently stopping commuter services. The company is currently working with

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Artemis Intelligent Power to use its transmission technology as the basis of a highly cost effective DMU energy saving solution. With the first delivery of the new system shortly to be made, rig testing is scheduled for early 2015 on a DMU power train test rig purpose-built by Bombardier Transportation. Long-term vision With a less risk averse commercial perspective borne of longer-term franchise periods, there is a real potential to move rail diesel traction from a late and highly conservative adopter of new powertrain technologies, to one that willingly embraces the potential in fuel saving and improved efficiency that these can bring. This is not to say that the automotive and off-highway industries are abundant with available innovations that can be deployed offthe-shelf. Far from it. This is why the external perspective of a consultant such as Ricardo which is both expert in the many candidate solutions available as well as deeply knowledgeable about the rail sector, can be extremely valuable in creating industry appropriate innovations that add value without creating unnecessary risk. Shane McCauley is head of Rail at Ricardo

Kilborn Consulting Limited is an independent railway engineering consultancy and design business. We specialise in the design of new and altered railway signalling systems for the UK railway infrastructure. There are seven defined areas for which we supply our services: • • • • • • •

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Connecting cities and communities through integrated infrastructure Who are we? Royal HaskoningDHV is an engineering, project management and environmental consultancy with vast experience of working on development projects all over the world. Working in collaboration with our clients, partners and stakeholders, we deliver innovative and sustainable solutions to society’s infrastructure challenges. We have extensive experience delivering complex schemes and consenting significant national infrastructure projects, for example, the largest infrastructure project in the Netherlands – the Amsterdam to Paris railway, the first Nuclear power station in over 20 years at Hinkley Point C, and various renewables projects including Dogger Bank wind farm.

Royal HaskoningDHV and HS2 – Connecting Cities and Communities We know this country can build world class infrastructure and HS2 and HS3 have the potential to be the pinnacle of 21st Century design.

Royal HaskoningDHV opts for a multidisciplinary developer services approach that factors in the environment, connectivity, legislation, safety and profitability. We feel we are expertly placed to provide input in a number of key developer service areas, including rail, tunnelling, bridges, geotechnics, transport planning and traffic modelling, construction traffic management plans, travel plans, cycle routes, flood risk, airports, due diligence of land surrender and assessment of environmental liabilities. Royal HaskoningDHV has 7,000 consultants and engineers across the globe in 35 countries. We have 15 offices around the UK including Manchester, London, Birmingham, Leeds, Newcastle and Peterborough. Contact us Paul Hanafin, Infrastructure Director T: +44 (0)121 709 6537 M: +44 (0)7775 948678 E: paul.hanafin@rhdhv.com

Ensuring that a rail project integrates well with its surroundings and is resilient to the changing climate is just as important as the starting-point and the destination. Page 70 December 2014

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A special condition Roseamary Beales explains a new approach to producing conditions of contract for Network Rail that means those tendering for work should find their ability to evaluate the contract vastly simplified

I

n January 2014, five years after works began on Crossrail, Europe’s largest infrastructure project, it reached the halfway point of its construction. Prime Minister David Cameron said at the time: ‘Big infrastructure projects are vital for the economy and the rest of Britain. They are the foundation-stone on which business can grow, compete and support.’ Five decades after the Beeching Report was published spelling the end for thousands of stations and branch lines – investment in rail is returning to the forefront of government policy. With HS2 quickly becoming a reality, and the prospect of developing a northern rail hub planned to help stimulate growth by allowing the cities of the North to work better together, rail is back in fashion as the ‘must have’ accessory for a dynamic and vibrant economy. At the Association for Consultancy and Engineering (ACE), in order to fulfil the demand for advice, information, local, regional and national government liaison and support, a Rail Sector Interest Group [SIG] was formed in 2013. The SIG exists to pre-empt and address the business issues affecting ACE members who work in the rail sector. It does this through a programme of meetings throughout the year, and regular engagement with leading politicians and key stakeholders including the Department for Transport and Network Rail. The Rail SIG explores how industry can support rail sector clients in delivering high-quality solutions that make the best use of investment. As part of this the group explores issues such as unlocking investment, procurement processes, franchise models, rail network efficiency, innovative solutions, pricing, consumer awareness and both UK and European Union rail policy. Recently, the group has been lucky enough to hear from the likes of Alan Price, director of railway performance at the Office of Rail Regulation, who gave a breakdown

of the CP5 settlement between his office and Network Rail. Speaking on this, Dave Darnell, the Rail SIG’s chair commented that: ‘While pipeline visibility is improving, there is still a lack of confidence to train and bring fresh blood into the industry. Shortages, particularly in the field of electrification, are and will be an increasing issue.’ In addition, we have welcomed Gareth Elliott from HS2 Ltd and Peter Wilkinson from the Department for Transport (see Rail Professional interview page 52) who came to discuss HS2’s supply chain strategy and the future of rail franchising, respectively. In addition, future speakers will include representatives from Network Rail to answer questions on the role that BIM will play in the delivery of upcoming rail projects. The group is also undertaking a piece of work designed to be put to use in engaging further with HS2 Ltd in the wake of its recent supply chain conferences, which took place in London and Manchester. Although the conferences went a long way to clarifying many aspects of the procurement process, there is still plenty that needs to be understood, and ACE’s Rail SIG sees part of its job as being to seek and obtain that clarity for its members. This is a critical time for the rail sector, a £38 billion investment period has just commenced and the industry remains wary of Network Rail’s ability to deliver, while a further £42 billion of investment will be forthcoming in the next two decades in the form of HS2. This makes for the largest investment in our railways since Victorian times, and will transform our railways, so the importance to ACE of having a direct line to its members involved in these efforts cannot be understated. With a multitude of changes currently on the table, ACE has to focus and prioritise its activities in order that members maximise the benefit from their subscription. A key priority in the coming years

will be in understanding the challenges being faced through the procurement process.

“A key priority in the coming years will be in understanding the challenges being faced through the procurement process” Tread carefully with the detail of contracts A fundamental of procurement is the choice of contract under which the consultant or contractor employed in relation to the proposed works is engaged. It is also an accepted fact that clients who include bespoke amendments within standard forms of contract need to tread carefully to avoid unintended consequences which can be disruptive and potentially costly. Some clients do, however, need to include Special Conditions in their contracts to accommodate their business needs or the particular complexities of their December 2014 Page 71


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work, but the implications are not always readily apparent to either the client or its contractor. It is the unintended consequences or knock-on effects that can give rise to misunderstandings and the commercial consequences that can all too easily flow from this. It was therefore encouraging when, earlier this year, discussions between ACE and Network Rail took place regarding Network Rail’s bespoke amendments for Track (NR8) to the standard form Infrastructure Conditions of Contract (Measurement Version) with a view to integrating them into the contract. The intention was to enable users, both at Network Rail and the contractors they intended to engage with, to read and understand a bespoke contract for Track within which all the terms and conditions were included within a single document rather than having to read across a lengthy set of amendments and potentially struggle to fully understand the contract as a whole. In addition the opportunity was taken to refine the amendments to reflect Network Rail’s current requirements and working practices. The value of this approach speaks for itself and is why Network Rail has chosen to move forward with the new ICC Measurement Version Incorporating NR8 Track Amendments (September

2014). There is now clear legal definition of the Terms used in the contract and of the procedures and processes required to be followed. Rights and obligations are clearly established and risk is allocated to the party best able to manage it. Where decisions need to be made those who are responsible for doing so are identified and given power under the contract to make them in accordance with a defined process. The contract forms one of the Contract Documents defined as such within it which include several Schedules. A Work Bank instruction signed by the parties is required before the contract becomes operational. Apart from the bespoke amendments made to the standard ICC clauses the contract also includes a number of special conditions which cover, for example collateral warranties, track possessions and isolations, the claims handling agreement and audit rights. Network Rail began to introduce its commercial teams which are supporting the new Plain Line Track contracts to the new bespoke contract several months ago and prior to its publication last month through the delivery of training sessions which are seen as key to the delivery of the benefits of this approach. With motivated and skilled teams being seen by Network Rail and ACE as essential for Track those teams need to be equipped with the right

processes. The contract supports best practice, collaborative behaviour and the delivery of value for money and in addition it is also recognised that both strong leadership and the appropriate technical skills need to be present. It is encouraging that Network Rail has highlighted to its teams the importance of the administrative part of procurement and that the development of the relationship within the operational team and with the supply chain is vital to both cost control and to driving efficiency. In order to assist the administrative process Network Rail has produced a series of standard letters which correspond to notices that may be given within the contractual process. As those involved become used to their format they will assist clarity and promote a consistent use of language regardless of who issues them. The need for good communication is being stressed as creating an environment of understanding which leads to clarity, trust and minimises the potential for misunderstanding. The rail industry can only benefit from the approach outlined above and it is anticipated that further collaboration will take place both as the ICC evolves and in the wider context of procurement overall. Rosemary Beales is contract advisor at ACE Visit www.acenet.co.uk

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RAIL PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

“We’ve proven rail can fit the requirements for the retail market, but we need more of a can-do attitude from the network” Russell Group director Ken Russell spoke to Rail Professional about the opportunities and challenges facing the rail freight industry – and he calls on the government to develop a clear strategy for the future

T

hese are interesting times for the British rail freight industry. A major step forward has just been taken with the launch of the Russell Group’s new Cross-Channel Intermodal rail service from Dourges in France to the very outskirts of London. It uses a route that achieves European gauge capability, and it is seen as further proof that the Atlantic Rail Freight Corridor which links the Pyrenees to Dourges, should be extended through the Channel Tunnel to Great Britain. The new contract is seen as a demonstration of the competitive option offered by Cross-Channel rail freight compared to maritime routes. In fact, few are as well placed as Ken Russell to see the potential within the industry as rail

freight links with the Continent improve. The announcement of the service is an important development for his company, which has grown from humble beginnings in 1969 to become a major player in the rail freight business. But Russell is also ideally placed to see the work that needs to be done by government to enable the UK rail freight industry to hold its own in Europe, and he believes it is not doing as much as it should to help. Business in his blood The second generation to work for the family firm, the business is in his blood. Although it was never assumed that he would join the firm Russell did become part of the business after university, and worked his way up. He always enjoyed the variety and the extensive travel which comes with the job. Despite the complications this brings to family life, it is clearly a career he loves.  The company’s own success notwithstanding, Russell has no doubt about the problems facing the industry and the need for the government to step up to the mark. As chair of the National Rail Council in the Freight Transport Association for many years until he stepped down earlier this year, he supports the association’s stance that the government needs to be clearer about its plans for freight in the UK. No clear strategy ‘I do agree with the FTA - the UK just hasn’t got a clear strategy for rail freight, and unfortunately, words and actions from government just aren’t aligned,’ he said. ‘We are seeing the development of

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bigger rail corridors in Europe, which has greatly increased the capacity of its network. These are probably comparable to HS1, but we need to add more routes which can match European capability, because Europe is such an important trading partner.’ Russell, who still sits on the FTA national rail council, continued: ‘HS1 is predominantly a passenger network. At the moment there are only five freight paths during the night in the week - there are no freight paths while the Eurostar is running, mainly due to the speed differential.   ‘In the long term, my view is that for selected UK rail corridors, we should have high speed passenger lines as well as freight lines. It makes sense to have separate freight and passenger lines heavy axles on high speed passenger lines will have a detrimental impact on maintenance and repairs. To service the demands of freight we need a freight preference route to serve the spine of the country. This is becoming more of an issue as we develop our retail economy.’ The freight sector is being overlooked The benefits for the business sector from HS2 are frequently touted – but despite all the hype surrounding the scheme Russell believes the needs of the freight sector are being overlooked. ‘It’s certainly a big investment and this sort of

infrastructure is vital to UK growth and development,’ he said. ‘But we do need to look at the benefits to freight and not just passengers. ‘In my working life I’ve seen a huge change in the ways that freight is carried. In container sizes alone, we’ve gone from standard 40ft x 8ft x 8ft 6 high containers, and now have 45ft x 2.5m x 9ft 6 high containers pretty much as standard within Europe, with a wonderful mismatch of metric and imperial units.  These are predominantly for the European market - the deep sea traffic still uses the 8’ wide size. But now some of these containers are 10.6ft high and we are seeing the introduction of 16.65m long ambient containers in the UK, which fit the extra long trailers, so it’s all change again. And broadly speaking, our rail infrastructure just wasn’t built for these dimensions, which clearly is a real issue.’ More investment on European rail networks Russell points out that the European rail network has had far more investment over the last couple of decades and is built on a gauge far greater than ours, ‘so of course they can cope with larger containers. ‘I just feel that there is a huge hype about HS2 - and HS3 does deal with freight but it just doesn’t seem joined up. They need to look at modern needs

of the freight sector because the current situation just doesn’t do it. It would be such a shame not to build a strategy that meets freight rail needs. I strongly believe that freight needs a practical route that meets the European and Channel Tunnel gauge.’ And the solution does not need to be hugely expensive. Simply by bringing disused railways back to life and making good use of what is already there, a route for freight could be put in place at a fraction of the cost of HS2. Solution would need just 14 miles of new rail ‘There has been some information presented to government and Network Rail for a route for freight which would use this,’ said Russell. ‘In fact, there is a suggested rail corridor from the Channel Tunnel to Glasgow which would incorporate some previously disused rail corridors and existing track - and would need just 14 miles of new rail. ‘I’m not suggesting this as the only solution, but it does need to be considered, especially as this alternative route has been estimated at just £6 billion. Compare that to the £50-60 billion investment in HS2 for the Manchester to London section alone. There’s a 10-fold reduction in cost and it would encompass provision for freight.’ When it comes to HS3 Russell says: December 2014 Page 75


Trusted Advisors in Transport FCP works with operators, investors, public authorities, suppliers and passengers to improve the world’s railways. www.fcpworld.net


INTERVIEW

‘As I understand it, HS3 seems like it is incorporating freight and passenger routes, which to me is healthy for the country. But I do still have an issue with high speed lines having to carry freight as there are increased maintenance costs. ‘Yes, we really do need to have freight in the network, but it should be separated. If HS3 is a corridor to HS2 and not high speed, then I’ve no problems with that at all.’   North and south working together Working on the Anglo-Scottish corridor the group is perfectly placed to understand the issues affecting the industry throughout the UK, and Russell wants to see north and south working together to have a strong voice for the future of freight.   ‘One of the issues we do have with freight is its structure. Passenger rail consists of franchises – i.e. operating over a route in a region and so it’s consistent.  But freight has no boundaries, no regions.   ‘We are seeing more issues in the south with capacity than in the north. For example, if we wanted to put on a train between Selby and Scotland, there would be no problem. However, if it was Channel Tunnel to Birmingham, then the route and the gauge and time of day will dictate whether it is possible.’ Russell believes the emphasis on passengers at the expense of freight is one of the greatest problems at present. ‘One of the biggest issues is that of Network Rail putting solutions and resolutions in place based only on minimum disruption to passengers - which then subsequently results in a worse resolution for freight.   ‘A recent example was the disruption of the West Coast mainline. The problem was identified in the morning. The plan was to take possession of the line straight away and spend time sorting it out. However, it was agreed to take possession at 10:00pm so passenger services were not affected. The problem here of course is that freight runs at night, so all our services were cancelled. Not only that, but freight paths were reduced during the day to maintain as much capacity for passenger services.’ More investment options needed  According to Russell, the other issue is that there are limited diversionary routes for maximum size freight along the West Coast mainline. ‘I see that we have to live with this because the network just doesn’t have the gauge capability. So we really do need to consider more investment options.’ It’s a cause well worth fighting for – as the benefits for society are huge believes Russell. ‘The benefits that customers get are - certainty of arrival time, which on long haul road isn’t easy to do; it’s cost neutral (or they wouldn’t do it) and it’s certainly environmentally a better

way to move goods a long distance than road. It’s about service, consistency and environmental benefit. So we find that larger companies with a CSR agenda within their ethos will use rail or sea as an alternative to road if they can.’ The benefits for the country as a whole are also clear – with cuts in carbon emissions as well as savings on road maintenance and reductions in road congestion. But there are still some areas of business where companies are reluctant to take the plunge. ‘There is still a nervousness about the uptake of rail for chilled and frozen goods as they need absolute cast iron certainty in terms of service,’ points out Russell. ‘We’re seeing trials on trains for frozen but we’ve not seen a massive charge for uptake.’ An environmentally friendly alternative The Russell Group and Europorte are also stressing the efficiencies that can be gained by reducing unnecessary ground handling while limiting carbon emissions for transporters who are increasingly seeking an environmentally friendly alternative. Before the Dourges announcement the Russell Group, was already running 34 trains between Daventry and Glasgow each week, as well as10 trains per week between Daventry and Barking/Purfleet. There is also capacity between Glasgow and Inverness six days a week. Problems too much for many While the Russell Group is operating successfully the logistical problems are simply too much for many. ‘Clients that use rail are pleased with what we give them,’ said Russell. ‘But if you look at the contracting third parties who offer rail, then there aren’t many of us. We’ve been contracting trains since 1984. We know what we’re doing and we understand the process, but the amount of time we have to spend to get rail solutions to work for us is unbelievable. ‘In reality, for most, it’s too difficult, a black art, which is probably why you’re left with only Stobart, Malcolms, and Russells who are contracting trains with freight customers. Our clients are pleased but they don’t see the barriers, the turmoil and the effort,’ he added. ‘Maybe I don’t want to be saying this!’ Despite the challenges facing the industry as a whole, the Russell Group is enjoying consistent success with an encouraging ten per cent sales growth for the Logistics business this year. The group prides itself on its culture, focused on service-led delivery. Russell explained: ‘We continue to work on improvement through innovation and technology, and investing in our 650 employees.’ But Russell has warned that Britain is in danger of being left on the margins -

lagging behind because of the quality of its Victorian railway infrastructure. He has previously called for a clear strategy from government to help the industry as a whole – putting forward a proposal last year for a freight preference route at a larger gauge to drive economic growth and connect Britain to the heart of the European freight network The majority of freight traffic in Britain today is carried mainly on lorry trailers via short sea routes - or the Channel Tunnel shuttle - not through rail and containers. But the UK’s European neighbours are able to carry lorry trailers on their rail networks because they have been built to a larger loading gauge than those of Great Britain. For the most part built in the 19th century, Britain’s railways, have a smaller loading gauge than on the continent. Enlarging the gauge of existing routes would not be possible without completely rebuilding them – with a cost which would be prohibitive. Russell also warned last year: ‘Continental European routes are being created to accommodate lorry trailers. This will leave Britain, already geographically on the periphery of Europe, on the margins of the European rail network and unable to accommodate continental gauge through-trains.’ But looking ahead to the future he believes more is needed from the network to encourage a greater use of rail freight. Fundamental change is needed. ‘We need a fundamental change. It is starting to happen. From ‘here’s what we do, what you want to buy?’ to looking at what customers needs are and how we can meet that need,’ he said. ‘We also need more people in rail with a solutions focused approach i.e. I’m looking for ‘reasons why we can’ rather than ‘reasons why we can’t’.   ‘We’ve proven rail can fit the requirements for the retail market, but we need more of a can-do attitude from the network.’ There are considerable challenges within the rail freight sector, but the Russell directors are confident their company, with its very distinct service offering, can meet them head on. December 2014 Page 77


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mber 2014 Page PB

Freight

The customer is key Chris MacRae explains why putting the customer at the heart of the rail freight policy agenda is absolutely key to achieving the growth targets expected of the sector

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n FTA objective is to optimise the performance of all modes of freight transport. In 2010 FTA took over the DfT’s rail promotion activities along with its wider interest in promoting mode shift. FTA has responded to that challenge. The Association subsequently launched its Modes Shift Centre to give advice to industry about opportunities for mode shift. In addition, in conjunction with Mike Penning, the former transport minister, FTA has worked with the UK’s major retailers within FTA membership to give greater visibility to their current use of rail freight. Our On Track publication provided a series of illuminating case studies showing the extent to which retailers were using rail freight, including the CO2 savings associated with this. This work has now been taken a step further. The same retailers have provided FTA with data giving details of their flows over 200 miles, providing the opportunities for load matching and even greater potential to use rail freight. At the same time, the UK’s leading retailers have identified 12 key areas where shippers believe progress is needed if rail freight is to fully realise its potential. We are calling this the Agenda for More. These 12 areas identified for improvement have been broken down into four key themes: • • • •

costs and competitiveness service availability and flexibility network access international services

The Agenda for More has now been endorsed by FTA’s British Shippers’ Council, which includes a much wider range of shippers from other sectors of the economy who are eager to move more freight by rail if the conditions are right. In its recent Freight Market Study and Delivery Plan, Network Rail states that it needs to cater for an additional 30 per cent increase in freight by 2019. That’s a tall order, and if this is to be achieved Britain’s leading retailers and shippers, upon whom that growth depends, have highlighted where major changes and improvements in the delivery and performance of rail freight services in Britain is needed if the growth projections forecast by the Freight

Market Study are to be realised. FTA launched the Agenda for More Rail Freight at the 2014 Multimodal show. The aim was to engage in a wide-ranging inclusive debate with the rail freight industry, rail freight logistics interests, regulators and government to discuss and agree how the goals set out in our Agenda for More Freight by Rail can be taken forward and implemented. Agenda for More Rail Freight campaign To achieve Network Rail’s rail freight growth forecasts, rail freight will need to increase by six per cent per year. To maintain that kind of momentum suggests that a more coordinated campaign is required to ensure that milestones are reached and targets met. Key components of the campaign would include activities which would raise the profile of rail freight, communications which articulate the case for sustained investment in rail freight in a wider rail market which is substantially dominated by passenger interests, and activities aimed at bolstering a greater understanding of the benefits of rail freight with politicians, decision makers and the public. Ideally, the campaign would be led by rail freight customers but would include the main rail freight industry stakeholders, academics and other relevant stakeholders and would attract appropriate resources and funding to sustain the campaign. Key campaign targets Cost reduction (a) 15%+ (to generate [x]1 % modal switch) • Genuine freight modal shift to rail requires double digit cost reduction of more than 10 per cent. This is particularly so for the retail sector where road freight costs to them on road trunking have decreased in real terms in the last decade. This could now make existing retail rail flows uneconomic compared with road freight whereas they did have a cost advantage a decade ago before the road freight sector innovated with double deck trailers that have brought down the transport cost per pallet to retailers in real terms.

(b) 20–30% (McNulty Report into the efficiency of Britain’s Railways) • The McNulty Report into the efficiency of Britain’s railways started from a premise that overall Britain’s railways were between 20 and 30 per cent less cost-efficient than counterparts. This figure was earlier referenced in the Office of Rail Regulation’s setting of efficiency targets for Network Rail for the 2009 – 2014 fiscal regulatory Control Period. While infrastructure costs are only one component of the input costs for rail freight they are though a significant component. This is the percentage cost reduction necessary to achieve genuine modal shift according to shippers. Service availability and flexibility Feedback from existing and potential rail freight shippers, particularly in the retail sector, is that rail freight providers need to develop and offer a range of service options more akin to those of a road freight 3PL (third party logistics operator). This would include a package of options including door to door (with road collection and delivery), round or single trip. This needs to include visibility on costings and price transparency. Reductions in service change lead times Discussion with potential shippers by rail has indicated a need to reduce service change lead times by a series of potential ranges: December 2014 Page 79


Freight

• To reduce response time for shipper customer service change requests to: (a) 6 hours? (b) 24 hours? (c) 72 hours? This may need to lead a different service / contracting model. Increased train lengths Freight train lengthening to reduce unit costs is seen as increasingly important, with projects currently underway and new designs of more space efficient wagons in production. Discussion with potential shippers by rail has indicated a need to increase train length by a series of potential ranges:

Bulk and other rail freight While this piece focuses upon retail rail freight issues as domestic intermodal traffic is viewed as the market segment with the greatest growth potential, other larger traffic areas have their own challenges • Deep sea intermodal: import and export container flows to and from the southern gateway ports of UK for international trade lanes face many similar challenges to those above. Deep sea intermodal is now the largest rail freight volume market in Britain and the investment in the Strategic Freight Network (England) and Scottish Freight Fund are designed to optimise the network for this as well as other traffics. • Bulk rail freight (coal, biomass, aggregates, steel etc.) faces its own challenges and needs from the rail industry if it is to grow more volume on rail. These include heavier axle weight loadings and longer trains. FTA has produced a guide Managing Rail Freight – Operational Performance for Bulk Shippers on the issues. Manufacturing and petrochemical (industrial) sectors face similar challenges.

• To increase average train length by: (a) 10%? (b) 17.5% (660 – 775 metres)? 775m is industry planning standard (c) 25%? This needs a total supply chain approach to determining the optimum train weight /length for different commodity traffics. Network access Increasing the available access to the network is crucial to rail freight growth. Potential shippers, especially retail, cite seven-day-a-week service availability (to avoid spot road freight costs at weekends) and more rail connected freight terminals as key to achieving this. Network Rail’s Freight Market Study suggests growth in rail connected warehousing to 2030 to deliver more intermodal and particularly retail traffic. This is going to be highly challenging. • To meet the Network Rail Freight Market Study increase in rail connected warehousing this has to rise from a current footprint of 1.6m2 to 5.9m2 (i.e. 400 per cent as required to deliver the growth forecasts in Network Rail’s Freight Market Study)! • To increase intermodal terminal capacity to [x]2 containers per day? Network availability • To improve freight train network availability to: (a) 24 hours per day / 5 days per week? (b) 24 hours per day / 6 days per week (+20% as per Network Rail’s Freight Market Study)? (c) 24 hours per day / 6.5 days per week? 24/7 service is possible for customers if rail freight operators contract road haulage and build into contract/price for customer. Page 80 December 2014

International services The Channel Tunnel has been underutilised for rail freight. A report by MDS Transmodal commissioned for FTA showed that the level of charges was the main deterrent to increased use. This was shared with the European Commission during Infraction Proceedings and led to Eurotunnel announcing cuts in charges. Retailers want to use the Channel Tunnel for retail rail freight services from Italy and France to UK. Discussion with existing and potential shippers by rail has indicated a need for reductions in freight rates to end customer shippers by a series of potential ranges:

• To reduce customer rate paid for container rail transit of Channel Tunnel by: (a) £50 (as per Network Rail’s Freight Market Study)? (b) £60? (c) £70? To take part in FTA’s policy work on rail freight please contact: Chris MacRae manager – rail freight policy, Freight Transport Association Email: cmacrae@fta.co.uk Visit www.fta.co.uk 1 & 2To be further qualified


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Freight

A year in rail freight In the run up to the election, we will be working to ensure that freight, which is key to the economy even though it does not have a vote, is not forgotten says Philippa Edmunds

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ail freight, has grown by 80 per cent in the past 20 years and generates more than £1.5 billion a year in economic benefits to UK plc. With the forecasts suggesting that rail freight volumes could double by 2043 the environmental, productivity and congestion benefits of delivering freight by rail could be worth more than £4 billion per year to the UK economy. The rail freight operators have already made more than £2 billion of investments in new equipment since the mid-1990’s. In order for rail freight volumes to grow, and with that increase the economic benefits to the UK economy, the government needs to continue to support the industry to give confidence to the sector to continue its high levels of investment. Recent industry investments include the Port of Felixstowe’s £40 million in the

Page 82 December 2014

North Rail Terminal which caters for 50 trains to serve the port daily, as well as the rail terminal at the new port at London Gateway. Additionally, Potter Logistics has extended its rail head from 468 million to 775 million, allowing its Selby terminal to take the longest trains from UK ports. More than half of rail freight traffic is port related. Therefore, the government’s support for the Strategic Rail Freight vision to provide a robust and reliable network, between the main conurbations and ports is crucial to UK industry. Targeted rail freight upgrades are effective; rail’s market share out of Southampton port along the A34 corridor increased from 29 to 36 per cent within a year of completion of the gauge upgrade, demonstrating the direct benefits of rail enhancements1. In March, the strategic cross country rail route from Felixstowe

port, parallel to the congested A14 and part of the Strategic Rail Freight Network development, was enhanced, which now allows 24 trains each day to avoid Ipswich station, saving up to 75 minutes per rail trip on this cross-country route and freeing up capacity for passenger and


Freight

freight services on the southbound route. Once the next tranche of funded capacity upgrades are completed during this Network Rail control period, 40 million lorry miles will be removed from the A14 corridor and rail could increase its share of the traffic out of Felixstowe from around 28 per cent to up to 40 per cent. Needs more capacity Looking forward, rail freight needs more capacity on key routes, especially the West and East Coast Main Lines so the allocation of significant released capacity from HS2 for freight is crucial, which requires a holistic and transparent approach to allocation of passenger and freight capacity by the Department for Transport. In addition to the planned work on the electric spine from Southampton to the West Midlands, electrification of other key routes – including into ports sidings and diversionary routes would enable rail to be more efficient and even more sustainable. The long-term planning of infrastructure is essential to ensure that investments are aligned to growth forecasts. Network Rail’s five-year funding cycle has helped to ensure that the correct investment decisions are made to position the railway to meet future demand, and this has been hugely beneficial to the success of the industry and freight and passenger growth so we are urging the government to continue investing in the rail freight network in CP6 and beyond. However, without a network of strategic rail freight interchange’s (SRFI’s), the government’s vision of the Strategic Rail Freight Network cannot be fully realised. In fact the forecasted growth in rail freight volumes over next 30 years is predicated on a network of SRFI’s coming on stream so a revised National Networks NPS, recognising the need for SRFI’s, which would have direct benefits to the green economy should be announced, as part of Autumn Statement on 3rd December. These proposed interchanges require good road and rail connections, large flat spaces of circa 60 hectares and need to be near but outside conurbations which they serve as well as particular industrial sectors in certain cases. SRFI’s are so important because they reduce the costs of transhipment thereby making rail more cost-effective compared to road with which it has to compete so that companies like Tesco and Asda can justify using rail for the trunk haul. In fact greater emphasis on improving air quality in cities and the resulting trend towards transhipment into low emissions road vehicles for the final delivery could enable rail to compete more easily with road if both modes face the same transhipment costs. SRFI’s also provide added value with warehousing

and consolidation facilities. Just as passengers need stations, rail freight needs road rail transhipment hubs in the right locations. Developers want to invest in rail freight interchanges, which are important generators of employment, and complement public investment in the Strategic Freight Network (SFN), but the missing element in the jigsaw is planning permission. Because of the specific requirements of SRFI’s, the use of greenfield may be needed so SRFI’s may need to be considered on a case by case basis and follow the example of Radlett SRFI, in Hertfordshire, which received planning permission from the Secretary of State Eric Pickles in July, after the public inquiry recommended granting permission for the project. Currently there are 15 detailed private

Stable charging framework Unlike passenger rail which has franchises, freight does not have the same safeguards so it needs a stable charging framework from the ORR and a better mechanism for safeguarding capacity for rail freight to cater for the overall doubling in volumes by 20332. As the network becomes more congested, freight operators and customers are concerned that even the limited capacity for freight growth will be eroded. Even where there is investment to support freight there is no way of protecting newly created capacity for the future. Rail construction traffic grew by 17 per cent last year as a result of the upsurge in construction projects; therefore we believe a National Minerals Strategy is needed to maximise economic

sector projects for SRFI’s, which would not require government funding, many of which are awaiting the outcome of the Autumn Statement announcements, before proceeding.

benefits from increased government infrastructure investment to cater for population growth and housing demand. Without a strategy, domestic mineral extraction consents could be exhausted at a faster rate than new ones are being granted. A strategy, which requires no additional government funding would define the national need for construction materials with a spatial planning framework, which could advocate larger domestic sites to favour sustainable distribution by rail and avoid the alternative of foreign imports. In the run up to the election, we will be working to ensure that freight, which is key to the economy even though it does not have a vote, is not forgotten. 1 Financial analysis £70.7 million project having a net present value of £376 million 2 In total across all freight categories rail freight is forecast to grow by 19 per cent by 2033 http://www.networkrail.co.uk/improvements/ planning-policies-and-plans/long-termplanning-process/market-studies/freight/

Integrated road and rail solutions The growth of the Daventry SRFI’s is a perfect example of the potential of integrated road and rail solutions. In July, permission was granted to expand the Daventry SRFI, to cater for 32 trains in and out of the facility per day, capable of moving more than 500,000 containers a year. The project includes eight million sq ft of rail served distribution space, a new rail link from the existing Daventry terminal to a new interchange together with new transhipment sidings, container storage and a truck reception area. In total there will be 9000 direct jobs there and it already boasts Tesco, Marks & Spencer and Sainsbury as users. Daventry has evolved around retail and general distribution across the UK. Other existing and proposed terminals cater for industrial sectors as well as the geographic catchment areas they serve.

Philippa Edmunds is manager, Freight on Rail

Visit www.freightonrail.org.uk

December 2014 Page 83


Opinion

Devolve to evolve Devolved control in Scotland and London has brought new investment and better management of local rail than that provided even by very good people in the DfT, says Stephen Joseph

I

n the wake of the Scottish referendum, and commitments to further devolution for Scotland, there has been a lot of discussion about ‘the English question’. This discussion has gone in two main directions - English votes on English issues in Parliament, and devolution to English cities and regions. Combined with a strong pressure to ‘rebalance the economy’, this has led the present government to support much stronger powers and funding for cities in the North of England. The Chancellor, George Osborne, has made several speeches about creating a ‘northern powerhouse’.  Transport in general, and railways in particular, are at the forefront of this push for devolution. HS3 has been presented as a symbol of the kind of new investment in the North that will bring cities together. So what might this mean in the future? Campaign for Better Transport has produced a discussion paper, Making Transport Local, setting out ideas for devolution of transport in England outside London. In general, we note that transport is very centralised in England. Local authorities here have few powers, duties or funding on transport, leaving local transport underfunded and uncoordinated, especially compared with communities in other countries. This hobbles the country economically, because businesses looking to invest elsewhere find co-ordinated public transport networks, increasingly with single, simple smart ticketing systems. We’ve therefore suggested that there is an economic as well as social and environmental case for devolving more powers and funding on transport. Rail is in the forefront on this. Other previous research we have produced (Going Local) has demonstrated the success of local authorities in taking control of London Overground and Merseyrail, transforming them from among the worst performers on the rail network to among the best. Received wisdom in the rail industry points to the large investment made in the London Overground, but Merseyrail has not had this; we found that both had benefited from local management and Page 84 December 2014

different types of contracts that rewarded operators for quality and performance. Other local authorities are wanting to follow. In particular, the Northern and Trans-Pennine franchises are due to be let next year, and an Invitation to Tender is expected imminently. Rail North, a consortium of the 33 transport authorities covered by these franchises, is bidding to take control of them in stages. These authorities have set out their approach – they want investmentled franchises rather than steady state or minimum cost ones. After hesitations in the government, they appear to be getting their way, with the government looking at more electrification, getting rid of all or most of the Pacers and committing to big improvements in stations, information and service quality. This may point the way for other parts of the network. A West Midlands Rail proposal has been developed by Centro and has enlisted support from other authorities in the wider West Midlands region. This would see the West Midlands part of the present London

Midland franchise hived off into local control. There are other local consortia with ambitions and money for their local rail networks – a Bristol Metro is being developed through the West of England Partnership, including the authorities and Local Enterprise Partnership for the Bristol and Bath sub-region. East Anglian authorities have come together with a vision for their area’s rail network, and have pushed hard for a Norwich in 90 package to bring down journey times on the London-Norwich line. Even Cornwall has looked actively at whether to take more local control over the Cornish branch lines, and has lobbied successfully for a package of investment to improve speeds and frequencies on the main line to Penzance. Traditional franchises may get out of date But this may be only the start. As smartcards and contactless payment cards take hold, traditional franchises where operators take revenue risk may get out of date. In a devolved world, where railways


Opinion

are increasingly run as an integral part of regional and sub-regional transport networks, the scope for operators themselves to take action to increase ridership and revenue will diminish. People will see railways as part of doorto-door journeys, paid for using their

bank card or whole-network ‘city-card’, or indeed their mobile phone. We can already see this in Denmark and South Sweden, now integrated into a simple two tier zonal fares structure. Recent research we’ve published by Greengauge 21 proposes replicating this

in the North of England, with joint fare setting by DfT and Rail North sweeping away the complex operator-set fares structure. Our devolution paper suggests building up the city regions as a first step, and then outside those cities creating ‘transport consortia’ of local authorities to oversee this integrated approach. These consortia can be flexible, but would have a legal status akin to similar bodies in Germany and France which have successfully improved public transport there. All of this is very challenging for the rail industry and DfT – but it appears to be an inevitable direction of travel, whatever happens in the general election next May. The evidence so far is that devolved control in Scotland and London has brought new investment and better management of local rail than that provided even by very good people in the DfT. As the focus on devolution and rebalancing the economy grows, we can expect more change and more priority given to local control of the railways and of transport generally. Our paper aims to promote a debate on the ways this should happen. Stephen Joseph is chief executive, Campaign for Better Transport

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RSSB

Wannabe in rail? Sharon Odetunde describes the intentions of the new Routes into Rail group – set up to attract young professionals to rail through awareness of the exciting and challenging jobs the industry has to offer

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he railway relies on a highly skilled workforce of thousands of engineers, operators and managers. In 2013-14, the mainline railway saw nearly 1.6 billion passenger journeys made and more than 115 million tonnes of freight carried. The railway’s popularity is growing and significant investment in the existing railway is planned, not to mention new schemes such as Crossrail and HS2 that are on the way. However, the rail industry faces a major skills gap. According to NSARE’s report, Forecasting the Skills Challenge, there will be £25 billion of investment in rail in the next seven years and around 10,000 new recruits are needed in rail by 2019. The report also reveals that 40 per cent is needed to replace people retiring and 60 per cent is needed to cope with growth arising from planned investments. NSARE’S report also states that the UK rail industry is due to benefit from an ambitious programme of investment with exciting plans reaching well into the next decade. It is therefore vital that the industry gains an understanding of the volumes and types of skills required to deliver the planned investment safely and

Under 30:

efficiently. Even taking into account the ageing society, rail’s workforce profile is skewed away from the young to the old. People 1st’s State of the Nation 2013 Passenger Transport and Travel report states that 24 per cent of employees across the whole economy are aged under 30, but rail has just 14 per cent of this age-group. 42 per cent of the whole economy is aged 45 and over, with rail employing 49 per cent. How do we attract young people to rail? Do they have the right image of the industry in their minds? Indeed are they even prompted to think about rail as a career? The issue poses a significant cost risk to the rail sector and so is of particular interest to rail businesses and suppliers in RSSB membership. This prompted us to get involved in the Routes into Rail initiative. Exciting, challenging and rewarding Routes into Rail, created earlier this year aims to address the ‘skills gap’

challenge, by developing tools and initiatives in order to support the rail industry (rail operators, infrastructure managers, rail supply chain) to increase the pool of talented candidates available to the GB rail industry and promote the message that a career in the growing rail industry is exciting, challenging and rewarding, with many opportunities for bright and able people. Its promotional video What I have always wanted highlights the many possibilities a career in rail can lead to. The task is to convince aspiring young professionals to disregard any preconceptions of rail and to pursue a career in an industry that boasts a lifelong history of significant developments in the engineering world and inevitably more to come. The initial focus of the group’s work has been on attracting students from UK universities, with a particular emphasis on engineering, where the rail industry faces a significant shortage of skilled people.

Overall rail sector: 14% in rail 24% whole economy

  80% male Rail engineering workforce: only 4.4% female

45 and over:

42% whole economy

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It is an incredibly exciting time to work in rail, especially as we are currently investing in the biggest programme of rail modernisation since Victorian times

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49% in rail

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OUTES INTO

AIL

www.routesintorail.co.uk

Baroness Kramer, Minister of State for Transport

#Routes2Rail Source: State of the Nation 2013 Passenger Transport and Travel report, People 1st (www.people1st.co.uk)

Source: www.gov.uk, Press Release, 15 May 2014

December 2014 Page 87


RSSB

An early part of the strategy is to attract students from UK universities in both engineering and non-engineering disciplines. The Forecasting the Skills Challenge report also mentions the issue of gender; women make up 4.4 per cent of the railway engineering workforce. However, there is a wide disparity between the low percentage of women undertaking apprenticeships (3.3 per cent) compared to those joining the industry as graduates (14 per cent). According to the IET’s Engineering and Technology: Skills and Demand in Industry 2012 report, some four per cent of technicians and six per cent of professional engineers nationally are female, indicating that, while the overall numbers in railway engineering are not significantly different to the national average, the graduate percentage is encouraging and should be commended. The Routes into Rail website includes material that can be used at university career fairs, in schools and by STEM Ambassadors (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) ambassadors and a promotional video featuring young professionals across the industry in a variety of roles. The group is also supporting a university presentation programme. Led by Young Rail Professionals

(YRP), the programme will engage with undergraduates studying at the 43 RRUKA member institutions and organisations over the course of the 201415 academic year. Young professionals will give a presentation to students in order to excite and enthuse them about a career in rail. The purpose of this programme is to promote the industry as a whole with all its disciplines. The Routes into Rail group was constituted in February 2014 as a sub-

group of NSARE’s Industry Promotion Steering Group (IPSG) and includes – in addition to RSSB, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), Institution of Railway Signal Engineers (IRSE), Permanent Way Institution (PWI), Rail Research UK Association (RRUKA), Railway Engineers Forum (REF) and Young Rail Professionals (YRP). Sharon Odetunde is senior partnerships development manager, RSSB

Email: pressoffice@rssb.co.uk

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Opinion

Avoiding the politics Will this golden age of rail continue asks John Horgan, who points to a belief across business that political uncertainty could hold back transformation progress

W

e are experiencing a rail renaissance, with record levels of passengers travelling on the UK’s trains and a historic high in levels of investment. Confidence in the future of the rail industry is up judging by last month’s CBI-URS Infrastructure Survey and it’s easy to see why for well-documented reasons, and what’s more, longer-term plans in the 2013 Spending Round demonstrate an unrelenting level of ambition throughout the next Parliament. The survey suggests that business is confident that the level of investment is paying off. More than half of the 443 senior business leaders surveyed said tube and metro networks have improved in the last five years. This encouraging response is echoed in support for the current system of investment, with the vast majority (99 per cent) backing the existing franchising system and Network Rail’s improvement plan.

The overwhelming support for franchising shows confidence in its continued ability to deliver more reliable rolling stock and better services. After all, franchising has delivered substantial new rolling stock over the last decade, leading to a 143 per cent improvement in fleet reliability since 2006, while passenger satisfaction is at near record highs. However it is important that Toc’s have confidence that the marketplace for franchising contracts will continue to be a competitive one. At the same time, politicians must continue to make the case for ambitious upgrades that boost the capacity of our network. One has to question, however, whether this golden age will continue. While business sees that infrastructure investments in recent years have made positive changes, there’s still a strong consensus that political uncertainty could hold back transformational progress. Nearly all respondents (96 per cent) said their investment decisions were impacted by uncertainty due to the electoral cycle and 93 per cent thought political rhetoric was undermining confidence in markets. Overwhelming support for an independent body Politicians come and go, and so do political agendas. Business is therefore eager to see a long-term approach to infrastructure that stretches beyond the five-year electoral cycle. The CBI-URS Infrastructure Survey found that 89 per cent of respondents back the creation of an independent body, as recommended by Sir John Armitt, chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority and former chief executive of Network Rail, to help assess the UK’s long-term future needs. Such a body could then make recommendations to government, hopefully avoiding the politics which business believes is holding back the development of critical projects. Armitt’s proposal may be the key to restoring confidence in the industry in order to recruit and develop the vital skills required to deliver complex, transformational projects. The strong pipeline of work ahead of us will require a large number of

skilled engineers, yet while demand for these skills is increasing, the industry is struggling to recruit people with the required qualifications and experience. The chronic shortage of highly skilled people is the single biggest challenge facing our industry – there just aren’t enough people to deliver the work. A long-term approach to infrastructure decision-making will allow the rail industry to recruit to the fullest, with real confidence that the demand for skills will be sustained. This will end the stopstart investment that has so often stalled progress in the past. Not only would an independent body improve the skills shortage, it would also help with making a better business case for some of the country’s most important projects. If there had been such a body already in place, an overwhelming number of respondents (99 per cent) to the CBI-URS Infrastructure Survey feel that it would have been easier to make the case for HS2 successfully. The project had initially been sold on the basis of its speed and appeared to be an optional upgrade rather than a new corridor, essential for fulfilling the country’s capacity needs. The huge increase in the budget for the project led many to naturally question the need for HS2, particularly in the face of hefty welfare December 2014 Page 91


Opinion

spending cuts. This resulted in the government revising the Strategic Case for HS2, highlighting the relationship between transport links and prosperity. Despite the government’s approach, HS2 has enjoyed a recent recovery in support from business. The publication of a stronger business case was needed to strengthen the urgency for capacity rather than speed in people’s minds. The results of this year’s survey demonstrate this support with a clear majority of businesses (59 per cent) now supporting the project. The lesson we gain from this case is how important good leadership is, both at regional and national level, for a smooth delivery. A long-term approach would incorporate national and local needs, integrating road, rail, aviation and ports. Rather than invest to fulfil the need for extra capacity as the problem reaches a head, a long-term strategy would be one step ahead. A feeling of optimism Looking to the future, there’s a feeling of optimism among businesses. Tube networks are expected to improve and many anticipate developments in intercity rail services. Perhaps even more notable however, is that commuter rail is also expected to improve for the first time

since 2011 when CBI started gathering data. This feeling of optimism is hardly surprising given the scale of investment that’s happening and there’s currently a lot to be excited about. Londoners are soon to enjoy their brand new £16 billion Crossrail train line, due to start running in 2018, not to mention future projects in the pipeline such as Crossrail 2, the proposed £20 billion rail line linking southwest and northwest London. Even

before the spades have been put to the ground for the start of HS2 there’s now talk of HS3, a scheme linking Leeds and Manchester that could help England’s great northern cities compete with the capital. My hope is that this ambitious trajectory of high-profile rail infrastructure schemes continues. John Horgan is managing director, Europe, Middle East, Africa and India, URS

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Opinion

Sustainability key for 2015 The smartest rail businesses will recognise that making the whole supply chain socially, economically and environmentally sustainable will lead to significant competitive advantage, says Nick Hemmings

2

014 was a fast-paced year for the rail industry with an estimated £95 billion committed towards infrastructure improvements and Network Rail changed to a public sector entity. And now 2015 looks set to become equally dynamic, as the agenda shifts towards the need for rail companies to show sustainable and responsible procurement. Already we can see the UK government and the European Union exert unprecedented pressure on companies - especially those in the public sector - to show best practice; via the implementation of a deluge of new laws, regulations and directives. As a public sector organisation, Network Rail will be required to take into account ‘economic, social and environmental wellbeing’ when seeking to purchase services from suppliers, under the Public Services (Social Value)

Act. This means rail companies will be required to provide a high level of detail from deep within their supply chain in order to fulfil public sector procurement, sustainability and social value requirements. At the same time, private sector rail companies are under pressure to prove their CSR credentials. The UK government CSR adviser and Carillion chairman Philip Green has written to the nation’s 50 largest companies urging them to report back on not only their own social value efforts, but also those of their suppliers. With buying organisations under pressure to provide a greater level of information through the supply chain, 2015 will be the year smaller suppliers will also have to step up their own sustainability performance and prove their commitment to helping main contractors achieve their goal of a

sustainable supply chain. The smartest rail businesses will recognise that making the whole supply chain socially, economically and environmentally sustainable will lead to

December 2014 Page 95


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Opinion

Resourcing Solutions

It’s not just larger firms striving to deliver responsible procurement; the drive to give something back is cascading right down through the supply chain. Resourcing Solutions is a specialist recruitment company in the infrastructure and built environment sectors with a key emphasis on rail infrastructure. With 90 employees, the company is an SME, but shares the same commitment to delivering responsible procurement. Richard Lawrance, CEO, said: ‘In terms of the rail industry, we are seeing a big change in bidding requirements and the evaluation process is now more focused on sustainability, safety and quality ahead of cost. ‘Increasingly, Network Rail and other main contractors require that their supply chain operates in a truly sustainable way – delivering not only the service required but also providing additional benefits in terms of employment, training, diversity, better use of technology, payment arrangements and protecting the workforce from fatigue. ‘We’ve carried out a thorough review of what we do – covering all aspects of employment, organisational governance and environmental matters. We now know that 90 per cent of employees are from the local community; we take on apprentices and up-skill them via our Training Academy; we use local suppliers where we can and we have a corporate charity – Railway Children. ‘We have recently won a number of large contracts as a direct result of these principles so we know that being a sustainable business makes absolute business sense.’

significant competitive advantage. There are four key sustainability issues rail companies must address in 2015 – responsible procurement, the provenance of goods and services, energy and carbon reduction and collaboration. Responsible procurement It is no secret responsible procurement is playing an increasingly important role in high-value bids in the public sector, including bids from those seeking to work with Network Rail. Smart companies are already taking steps to satisfy the government that they are procuring responsibly such as First

Great Western which, with the help of Achilles, has asked all its suppliers about their apprenticeship schemes in order to fulfil its social value requirements. 2014 also saw the UK government placing unprecedented pressure on rail entities to consider the benefit to the community during the procurement process. In the next year we expect more and more buyers to use local companies and small to medium sized enterprises in an effort to create goodwill within the community as well as help provide sustainability benefits and costs savings. Rail companies need to be able to gather and store data about how suppliers are fulfilling their sustainability credentials and how they deliver traditional business functions in order to achieve the social value needs required by the new laws and regulations. Energy and carbon reduction Energy consumption and use is going to be a talking point across the UK in the next year with a number of initiatives to be implemented both at home and globally. Network Rail is already taking steps to reduce its environmental impact by implementing a number of schemes including reducing the amount of waste materials produced during construction, using low carbon sleepers on the rail network and introducing electrification across the network. The organisation has also introduced a responsible sourcing policy to ensure all suppliers are considering the environment when sourcing materials. Meanwhile, the UK is mandating rail businesses to reduce their energy use through the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS), which will see ten times more businesses than ever before required to report on their energy usage. By the end of December 2015, any company with more than 250 employees, a turnover of more than €50 million (£41.5 million) or an annual balance sheet total of more than €43 million (circa £35 million) will be required to report on their energy usage. It is likely that those who do not make efforts will face fines. On a global scale, the United Nations is asking nations, by March 2015, to provide their proposals for the new 2030 targets on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Negotiations are already underway and the EU has already set an ambitious target for all member states to reduce energy consumption by 20 per cent by 2020. This month, it also set reduction levels of 40 per cent on 1990 levels by 2030. However, the rail industry as a whole is only going to reduce carbon emissions and energy use by devising a way to effectively monitor and benchmark sustainability measures throughout its supply chains.

We have seen some rail businesses already take steps towards this and we are responding to buyer demands by creating even more sophisticated systems to store and collate supplier information. An accurate database allows buyers to ensure their suppliers have recognised environmental credentials and reduction plans, such as the Certified Emissions Measurement and Reduction Scheme (CEMARS) which evaluates the steps a business has taken to reduce their carbon footprint. Collaboration A common complaint from many suppliers in the rail industry is the need to provide the same information and documents to multiple buyers time and time again. In 2015 the newly rebranded Railway Industry Supplier Qualification Scheme (RISQS), formerly known as Achilles Link-up, is set to come into its own as a way for both buyers and suppliers to cut down on red tape and bureaucracy in the procurement process. RISQS, which incorporates services provided by Achilles, brings together more than 100 rail and transport buyers and more than 3,000 suppliers – 83 per cent of which are SME’s. There is a single questionnaire and an audit process, incorporating all industry standards, to ensure buyers can find companies which meet their supply needs. RISQS is operated by the industry for the industry to ensure the needs of both the buyer and the supplier are met during the procurement process. By working together, buyers can not only cut down on the work required from suppliers when tendering for work but also dramatically reduce costs related to supply decisions. Provenance of goods and services Knowing the origin of goods and services to ensure they are not linked with human rights violations such as slavery has never been more important with recent moves made to eliminate slavery from the UK. The UK government is leading the way by announcing that large businesses will have to include in their annual reports how they are tackling slavery in their supply chains and at home. Issues of provenance usually relate to suppliers in lower tiers of the supply chain. We are already seeing growing interest in supply chain mapping – where companies use a tool to identify suppliers beyond tier one and two. Once businesses know who is in their supply chain, they can scrutinise each supplier’s operations and evaluate whether companies are aligned to their own values in terms of people, planet and profit. Nick Hemmings is account manager with RISQS, Achilles

December 2014 Page 97


Europe

A hit with rail The Hit Rail Interoperability in Practice event saw speakers from several European countries share solutions and their practical experience of interoperability projects in passenger and freight services and infrastructure

T

he workshop, held in Brussels recently, has helped to foster a greater understanding of a wide range of issues and outcomes facing the European railway industry. Against a backdrop of information on new European Commission directives on interoperability, workshop presenters were able to discuss solutions as well as describe and demonstrate a number of practical examples of early implementation projects in passenger and freight services and infrastructure management. Hosted by Hit Rail b.v., one of Europe’s leading players in the drive towards interoperability, and held at Belgian railway company SNCB’s headquarters, the event attracted more than 50 attendees from railway organisations across Europe. Representatives from the European Commission’s transport directorate DG Move and from railway bodies such as CER (Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies), ERA (European Railway Agency) and Raildata also participated. Participants were welcomed by Hit Rail chairman Helmut Grohmann, who explained how the railway industry has changed dramatically as more competition has been introduced. Anne

What is Interoperability? Interoperability is the ability of a rail system to allow the safe and uninterrupted movement of trains with the required levels of performance. This ability depends on all the regulatory, technical and operational conditions which must be met. The European Union is pushing forward with directives, and institutions like the European Railway Agency (ERA) are also involved. The advantages are that if railways work together and create a strong European infrastructure then this will benefit citizens, economic operators and public authorities. It will also bring environmental benefits by reducing gas emissions and make European railways more competitive in the world market, as well as increase the competitiveness of rail in relation to other modes of transport.

Page 98 December 2014

Schoubs, CIO of SNCB, stressed the importance of rail for Belgium, because of its location at the heart of Europe. She recalled that SNCB was one of the early promoters of Hit Rail’s Hermes VPN (virtual private network) in the 1970’s and had been a shareholder of Hit Rail since its foundation. Hit Rail’s commercial manager, Ugo Dell’Arciprete, gave an overview of why interoperability is so important and urgent, looking at the background and the new European legislative landscape that will require the industry to work more closely together. Dell’Arciprete also highlighted the role of Hit Rail which ‘has interoperability in its DNA’. The organisation was created as a joint venture between railway companies across Europe, with the aim of helping them to work together more effectively. It is fully owned by the railways with no outside vendor interests and it encompasses both incumbent railway undertakings and newcomers in this increasingly competitive marketplace. Practical examples of interoperability Participants were reminded of the pressing need to find interoperability solutions in the face of EU TSI (technical specifications for interoperability)

regulations, namely the telematics applications for passengers (TAP) and for freight (TAF). Michael Kistler, head of marketing communication and e-business at Swiss railway undertaking Rhaetian Railways (RhB) gave an interesting example. RhB has implemented a fully interoperable, XML-based passenger reservation system and was the first rail organisation in Europe to become interconnected to all other European railways using Hit Rail’s new HEROS web services. HEROS provides translation services for fast and seamless communication between ‘old style’ reservation systems and new Web Services/XML platforms, allowing RhB to have all its inventory on one system and thus enabling just in time booking, optimising train occupancy, taking pressure off staff and avoiding booking errors. So in the eyes of Rhaetian Railways and the words of Michael Kistler: ‘HEROS is the key to Europe’. Hit Rail’s technical manager, Enrique Ruiz, added more detail on RhB’s new reservation system that currently handles more than 270,000 transactions per year. ‘RhB is conducting business with partners that use different technologies and standards in a seamless way. This is interoperability in practice,’ he said. A Raildata presentation, by Francis


Europe

About Hit Rail Hit Rail b.v. is a private Dutch company created in 1990 and owned by 12 European railway companies. Its purpose is to help European railway companies to carry out international projects in related fields of data communications and information technology. Hit Rail is responsible for managing international private data communications infrastructure and message brokering services on behalf of its shareholders and customers. Its services are used by some 40 railway companies from 21 countries. All Hit Rail customers’ data centres and company networks are interconnected by a panEuropean IP-based VPN (virtual private network) named Hermes VPN, which is supplied by British Telecom (BT) and managed by Hit Rail. In 2013 the company launched its HEROS message interoperability service which aims to enable interoperability across disparate platforms in railway companies across Europe.

DG Move, who talked about the Directorate’s objectives for the next parliamentary session of the EU Commission.

Bedel of SNCF Fret (Raildata Chairman) and Luca Mariorenzi of Trenitalia (Raildata ISR Assembly chairman), demonstrated how an interoperability solution can help with wagon tracking and tracing across Europe using ISR. ISR answers the question ‘Where’s my wagon?’ and provides a comprehensive exchange of movement information for wagons in international traffic through a central web-based platform. Mick Haynes, on behalf of Network Rail, then described the programme for TAF and TAP implementation within the British rail system. The UK has adopted a common approach for freight and passenger traffic which is fully supported by the state bodies. Detailed implementation proposals have been developed and the TAF/TAP project will create a number of benefits, including a single way of working, compatibility with European partners, promotion of international services and improved operational and passenger information. Haynes concluded: ‘It makes good engineering and financial sense for

everyone to work on one programme.’ Rail freight interoperability was illustrated with an example from the Czech Republic, by Petr Cervinka of CD Cargo, the freight company, and Miloš Futera of SŽDC, the infrastructure company. The exchange of data between the two companies is now fully TSI compliant, and the benefits are already apparent, with integrated systems enabling reductions in staff time and standardised communications with all railway undertakings. Further sessions centred on panel-led discussions covering the strategic issues of interoperability in each of the three sectors of infrastructure, passengers and freight. Other speakers included Libor Lochman, general secretary of CER (Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies) and Stefan Jugelt, project officer for Telematic Applications at the ERA (European Railway Agency), with a concluding keynote from Linos Voskarides, Policy Officer at the European Commission’s

Hit Rail and Interoperability Antonio López, managing director of HIT Rail, gave a presentation on Hit Rail’s approach to interoperability, discussing the forces that are shaping the European railway market and the opportunities offered by new technologies, such as internet or cloud computing, to support structural change and improvements in working together. He also described the HEROS platform, the family of solutions that enables interoperability between railway applications. In summary, the HEROS platform simplifies the implementation of TAP and TAF TSIs because it allows organisations connected via the HERMES VPN to exchange data in any format through any channel. It has open standards with no customer lock-in and it is a true interoperability platform that is high performance, reliable and easy to implement. Hit Rail’s vision for the future sees the harnessing of ICT to the advantage of the rail industry, providing transparency, sustainability, effectiveness and continuous development. Email: info@hitrail.com Visit www.hitrail.com December 2014 Page 99


Toc’s

A new Toc in town Gordon Cox describes the recent progress of the Rail Operations Group (ROG), on schedule to become the UK’s newest train operating company

R

OG was formed in July 2013 and commenced trading in September of that year. The company set out with the objective of becoming a recognised supplier of professional rail operating services to the UK rail industry. In December 2013 ROG made rail industry history by becoming the first independent UK rail business to supply qualified and experienced train drivers to the train operating sector. Since then it has been supplying driver resources to the freight, passenger and engineering sectors. The business is in the enviable position of being owned and directed by five experienced industry professionals. Between them the knowledge and range of expertise across a range of disciplines is what has enabled them to build such a modern innovative business. Karl Watts heads up the team as managing director. Watts is known throughout the industry and has more than 35 years’ experience working in the rail industry both in the UK and internationally, holding a number of senior positions within the industry. While his experience has principally involved passenger and freight train operation, Watts has also seen engagement with some high profile rail projects including IC225 introduction, Heathrow Express, ERL rail-air link in Kuala Lumpur, the Attiko Metro system in Athens and delivering 193 new S Stock LUL tube trains to London’s underground network. He said: ‘We are offering the industry a range of innovative services which we believe can provide bestpractice cost-effective solutions for rail customers.’ The business provides services in four key areas: • as a licensed train operating company specialising in rail services movements • providing a range of managerial services including programme management, franchise bidding and mobilisation, new traction introduction, safety system design competence assessments and root cause investigation • the recruitment and selection of drivers and operational staff • the initial and ongoing training/ development of drivers and operational staff. Page 100 December 2014

ROG is on schedule to become the UK’s newest train operating company. The operating licence and safety certificate applications were submitted to the ORR in October 2014 with the aim of being fully operational from 01 March 2015. As an operating company, ROG will specialise in train movements for the rail services market. This involves the supply of a dedicated rail haulage operation for the rolling stock leasing companies, vehicle manufacturers and train operating community. ROG’s team of industry specialists offers expertise in this field and the company’s operation is designed to undertake the movement of traction and rolling stock in connection with: • new-build deliveries • new-build testing and mileage accumulation • fleet refurbishment programmes • fleet cascade programmes • vehicle/fleet testing • infrastructure-train interface testing • unit modification programmes (e.g. ERTMS fitment) • redundant/off-lease stock for storage • passenger (ECS) movements • ad hoc freight or engineering rolling stock movements.

The business model is based on only employing team members on full-time contracts. The company’s operations managers, all fully qualified train drivers, are multi-skilled, have a high degree of professionalism, and are able to undertake a range of work such as driver training, risk assessments, safety briefing and system verification. ‘Joining ROG has been a great experience for me; my knowledge has been developed and opportunities have arisen for personal development that I could have only imagined in the past. Being valued and part of the decision making process makes the whole thing complete; couple that with an impressive benefits package and the latest equipment and uniform I feel proud to be part of this progressive company,’ said Chris Birks, operations manager. EuroDriver programme ROG delivered its first main line driver conversion courses in May 2014 on behalf of Balfour Beatty Rail. Realising that a large number of new train drivers would be required in the industry over the course of the next few years, ROG saw that there would be a huge demand for driver training. It has developed a train driver competence management system


Toc’s

and driver training programme to help satisfy that demand. The course has been built to conform to the requirements of the European Train Driver Licences and Certificates Regulations (TDLCR) and, in recognition of this, the programme has been branded EuroDriver. It is modular in construction, enabling clients to select the units appropriate to their operation. The EuroDriver programme will be promoted to the industry in early 2015. The system sits on an electronic competency management system platform, using a ‘cloud’ for system storage and iPads as the user interface. First recognised driver training company ROG is currently progressing its application with the ORR to be the first by the end of 2014 as currently there are no ORR ‘recognised’ independent train driver training companies delivering a compliant TDLCR programme in the UK. Providing management support services and specialist operating advice, ROG’s experience can be utilised during design, construction and pre-operations phases of a project through the establishment of a shadow operating entity. The shadow operations team, while not having a railway to operate, conducts itself as if it has. In doing so the operator

is represented throughout the project resulting in an operable railway from day one without the need for modification or procedural workarounds. The focus and direction of the team continues throughout the operability of the system as well as the insight to design standard operating procedure, staffing levels and competencies so that that they are fit for purpose at start up. The shadow operator also ensures continuity between the project development and the actual operation with the same staff employed on both the before and after inception. This specialist advice is based on the company’s global experience of procurement advice on rail vehicles, terminal design, testing of operational facilities, passenger franchise bid work, franchise mobilisation, introduction of new rolling stock, platform risk assessments and development of standard operating and emergency procedures. Front line operational support is something ROG is able to make the most of when utilising its range of competencies, by providing support when required by Toc’s and Foc’s to assist them in carrying out operational management tasks such as: conducting safety briefings, route risk assessments, signal sighting, emergency on-call cover etc.

Unique in rail ROG also has a team of technical authors that have real front line delivery experience. Through a process of task analysis the company is able to then author technical publications and standards that are logical, inclusive of all required steps and in plain English. ROG’s position as the UK’s only train operating company providing a range of supporting services to the industry, makes it one of the most innovative, unique and exciting new businesses in the rail industry. ROG’s future status as a train operating company will complement its current role as a supplier of management support services. These include: project management for new railway operations, operations management support and operational training. ROG also provides services as a terminal operator on behalf of end customers to manage their off network rail operations. This includes the provision of shunting locomotives, ground staff and safety management systems. Gordon Cox is commercial director of the Rail Operations Group

gordon.cox@railopsgroup.co.uk Visit www.railopsgroup.co.uk

mber 2014 Page PB

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Page 102 December 2014


TOC Focus

Toc Focus TransPennine Express is carrying double the number of passengers than at the start of the franchise – making it one of the UK’s fastest growing Toc’s. Winning more than 70 business awards the company will continue to run the franchise until at least February 2016

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TPE (First TransPennine Express) was launched in 2004 as a joint venture partnership between First Group (55 per cent) and Keolis (45 per cent). Headquartered in Manchester, the Toc runs inter-city services between the major towns and cities of the north of England as well as the Central Belt of Scotland. In 2006 it expanded its services to cover Manchester Airport to Blackpool and a year later extended the route from the airport to Edinburgh and Glasgow, doubling the number of daily trains. FTPE is one of the only operating companies to run a 24-hour service and has trains running between York, Leeds and Manchester Airport at least every three hours every night of the week. The start of the franchise saw FTPE carry around 13 million passengers a year and it now carries around 26 million. As well as that, the company received an 85 per cent satisfaction rating in the Spring 2014 National Passenger Survey. Fleet FTPE has a fleet of 70 trains (51 threecar Class 185 Desiros, nine Class 170 Turbostars). In 2013/14 it invested £60 million in ten brand-new electric Class 350/4’s and the 40 additional carriages provide 90,000 extra seats a week. Following the introduction of the new electric trains the Toc created a timetable

that was rolled out in May 2014, known internally as ‘TransPennine Plus’. For passengers travelling from Manchester, the new trains and timetable provide five trains an hour across the Pennines with improved journey times between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle. The company has the second highest seat occupancy of any UK Toc and has reduced taxpayer subsidy as a proportion of farebox (the fare recovery ratio) revenue by 78 per cent during the life of the franchise. Awards In the last ten years, FTPE has won 72 industry and business awards, including a five-star rating for EFQM (European Foundation for Quality Management) and the European Intercity Rail Operator of the Year in 2013, at the European Rail Congress Awards. In October the following year, it became the first Toc to win the UK Excellence Award from the British Quality Foundation. The award recognises companies that demonstrate excellence in all areas of operation, and FTPE was one of only four companies to have been shortlisted. Safety FTPE and the RMT have worked together regarding safety policy and the transport union spoke at the Toc’s last annual safety conference. The focus at the event was on station operational risk assessment; developing FTPE’s 2014/15 safety plan; introducing a safety innovation group and also producing FTPE’s quarterly internal safety magazine, Safety Matters. The Toc’s safety communications course, Having an Effective Safety Conversation, is delivered to all staff and

to date has been attended by 80 per cent of its managers and supervisors. In 1998, the DfT started The Secure Stations Scheme, an initiative with the aim of reducing crime at overground and underground train stations across the UK. The scheme, which covers the areas of station design, management of the station and crime levels and passenger perception of security, has been re-accredited for all of FTPE’s stations. Environment FTPE introduced EcoDrive in 2008, the competition that awards drivers for safely reducing fuel consumption, which since it began has prevented 52,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere. The Toc’s sustainability is measured in emissions for every passenger km, which includes emissions from fleet, electricity and gas use at its offices and stations – a figure it has reduced by 7.5 per cent in the last three years. Nick Donovan, managing director: ‘First TransPennine Express strives to deliver great service every day for its customers and since the franchise began in 2004 has invested nearly £350 million. Customer satisfaction has risen to record levels and it has won national and international awards.’ December 2014 Page 103


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Ripe for the picking erry Recruitment has another London branch and with it rail industry expertise following its purchase of Mainline Resourcing. The deal brings blue-chip clients including First Group, Stagecoach, Govia and Virgin. Tony Berry, Berry Recruitment chairman, who negotiated the deal, said: ‘The acquisition boosts Berry’s turnover by around £5 million and gives us entry into the rail industry. The company aims to quickly expand the new acquisition through investment and new staff.’ Berry managing director, Chris Chown, said of the deal: ‘This acquisition represents an important strategic move for us as we grow and diversify. We have 28 branches across the country and are looking to build on the new sectors that Mainline brings to the company.’ Visit www.berryrecruitment.co.uk

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Engineering the workforce dinburgh College has launched a new railway engineering course, equipping students with the skills needed to gain employment within the rail and construction industries. Already underway, all students who graduate from the 16-week NVQ Railway Engineering course will be guaranteed job interviews with VGC Labour Solutions. Students who go on to work for VGC will be working on projects such as the £650 million Edinburgh-Glasgow Improvement Programme. The students are learning practical skills in a safe simulation environment – a key focus is placed on ensuring they are aware of the main safety risks when working on rail infrastructure. To achieve this, each day one trainee acts as the COSS (controller of site safety) to replicate working on a live railway. Graham Piggott, director of VGC Labour Solutions North, said: ‘The students are learning key skills from

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experienced trainers. At the end of their course we will gain well-trained, keen members of our local workforce, who will work on Scotland’s important infrastructure projects.’ Visit edinburghcollege.ac.uk / www.vgcgroup. co.uk Bright sparks he UK government has established a task force of MPs and local council leaders based in the north of England to consider the priorities for electrifying the rail network in the region. SYSTRA will assist the task force by providing the technical and socioeconomic analysis to underpin the recommendations. With the northern rail network comprising more than 2,000km of track, the local knowledge and analytical tools that the group has will be critical, says SYSTRA. Working with colleagues at Network Rail, SYSTRA will be examining the wider economic benefits that result from a better rail service, the benefits that arise from replacing diesel with electric vehicles and the need to provide an even flow of work for the suppliers and installers of electrification equipment. Also on the agenda is the link up with other organisations that can be derived by looking at the service network as a whole and the pressing need for improved rolling stock for the northern network. Visit www.systra.co.uk

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Clever connections isco and its partners have launched the Connected Transport Challenge, which provides an opportunity for start-ups and SME’s to seek investment and exposure to the rail and transport industry. SME’s entering the programme will be tasked with developing next-generation StaaS (Station-as-a-Service) solutions in response to real world technical challenges. The focus areas for entries will be the development of smart solutions and improvements in the efficiency of physical security, operations, retail and passenger experience. StaaS is a two-year collaborative innovation project that aims to create a new technical, operational and commercial model for future stations. The

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project is co-financed by the RSSB and Innovate UK, formerly the Technology Strategy Board. Finalists of the programme will have the opportunity to showcase their solutions in-situ and will each receive a £10,000 grant to develop their solution further. Two months of intensive mentoring and advice from Cisco and its partners – including marketing, legal services and office space – will also be on offer. Phil Smith, Cisco UK & Ireland chief executive, said: ‘The Connected Transport Challenge provides the rare opportunity for innovative UK talent to demonstrate its technological ingenuity to some of the rail industry’s major stakeholders.’ Visit www.cisco.com ‘World-beating apprenticeships’ he rail industry’s application to develop a Rail Engineering Trailblazer Apprenticeship standard has been successful, the government has announced. As part of the scheme, new apprenticeships are being designed by employers from a wide range of sectors to meet their various skill requirements, covering disciplines that include electrification, signalling and telecommunications. A group of rail engineering employers, supported by NSARE (National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering), submitted an application to develop new apprenticeship standards for the industry to make existing frameworks simpler to understand as well as more flexible and focused on delivering the needs of employers and apprentices. The trailblazer group, whose members include Amey, Carillion, DB Schenker and Hitachi Rail Europe, is being chaired by Network Rail apprentice development manager, Michelle Nolan-McSweeney. Following the announcement, Business Secretary, Vince Cable, said: ‘Apprenticeships are a driving force behind getting young people the skills that employers want and the economy needs. These reforms have empowered businesses large and small to design and deliver world-beating apprenticeships that offer a real route to a successful career.’ Visit www.nsare.org

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continued... December 2014 Page 105


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Less carbon, more heat green initiative that aims to reduce Birmingham New Street’s carbon footprint is underway, the first time that the system has been used at a Network Railmanaged station. To deliver the project, Network Rail, Birmingham City Council, Cofely and sustainability consultants, Anthesis-

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SecondNature, will join forces to bring about the installation of 1.5km of heating pipework. The pipes will be installed throughout the station and in the city centre to enable excess heat produced by a new CHP (combined heat and power) unit to be redirected to the Birmingham District Energy Scheme. Since its redevelopment, New Street station uses more electricity due to the newly-installed 31 new escalators and 29 new lifts. The green initiative scheme will supply heat to offices and other buildings in the city that include Aston University and the National Indoor Arena. Cofely technical development director, Ben Watts, said: ‘This latest development of the Birmingham District Energy scheme creates one of the most extensive low carbon heat networks in the UK. It now supplies buildings across all sectors, including healthcare, education, local authority, commercial, residential and retail and New Street station – saving more than 15,600 tonnes of CO2 per annum.’ Visit www.cofely-gdfsuez.co.uk

Blame it on the bogie

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KF has launched the SKF Multilog On-line System IMx-B, the first wireless full bogie monitoring system for rail operators, enabling efficient, fleet-wide condition monitoring. The system offers added value to both large and small Toc’s that are making the transition from time-based maintenance to condition-based maintenance for their fleets, improving service performance, train maintenance and availability. Vibration, temperatures and speed data are collected and processed by the Multilog On-line System from railway-specific sensors on the bogie. Intelligent capabilities built into the system recognise stable running conditions as the time to collect data. Calculated values can be processed locally on the train for immediate feedback or sent wirelessly to the cloud for further remote analysis in SKF’s Oberserve software. ‘The goal of the SKF Multilog IMx-B development was to create a bogie monitoring system that can be easily and cost-effectively installed in new trains or retrofitted to existing fleets,’ said Victor Martinez, SKF business development manager railway mechatronics and condition monitoring. Visit www.skf.com

Best seats in the house o welcome the multimillion pound electrification of the South Wales Main Line, Network Rail and ABC Electrification have opened a new headquarters in Newport, Norwich House. The city centre base, which is more than 8,038 sq. ft., houses 100 staff from both companies and has views over the line on which they are working. The electrification works will improve journeys between south Wales and London by around 20 minutes. Network Rail programme manager for electrification, Dan Tipper, said that the new building will bring ‘great access to the network’. ‘By improving connectivity and reducing journey times, electrification will also help boost the economy of the city.’ ABC Electrification programme director, Brian Fisher, said: ‘The offices will be the nerve centre of our work, helping Network Rail electrify the South Wales Main Line.’ Visit www.abcel.co.uk

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20 years of environmental benefits 1MW solar PV system will power Hitachi Rail Europe’s manufacturing facility at Newton Aycliffe. The installation forms part of the initial project under a framework agreement between solar PV supplier and installer, Photon Energy, and Macquarie Lending, who will be financing the deal, that will enable organisations with large roof areas to benefit from long-term low cost green electricity. The arrangement involves a 20-year power purchase model under which Macquarie Lending leases the commercial roof space from the building owner, which finances the capital cost of the solar PV installation. For the building owners, the price of electricity will be linked to RPI for 20 years and at the end of the 20-year period will take on ownership of the solar PV installation, while continuing to benefit from the power generated for the remainder of the modules’ working life.

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Visit www.hitachirail-eu.com December 2014 Page 107


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Ordnance survey trategic risk advisor, 6 Alpha Associates, has provided a detailed UXO (unexploded ordnance) risk assessment for Network Rail as part of the five-year redevelopment of London Bridge station, essential for unearthing ordnance dropped in WWII. The central London station is one of the capital’s oldest and is currently being rebuilt with a new concourse and redesigned platform layout as part of the £6.5 billion Thameslink programme. With more than 18,000 tonnes of bombs having been dropped on London during WWII – and around 10 per cent not detonating – there is always a risk for any major infrastructure project. It is critical that UXO risk on any site is fully quantified and accounted for ahead of any construction work, something that 6 Alpha Associates has been engaged with at London Bridge since 2012. Following a study based on historical data and geo-referencing techniques, the company was able to recommend a range of suitable risk mitigation measures to ensure the safety of personnel on site and to minimize the risks associated with project delay and disruption. Over the last ten years 6 Alpha Associates has provided UXO risk management support on thousands of construction and civil engineering projects worldwide including Crossrail. Visit www.6alpha.com

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Trained in Spain n a deal to enhance technical service offerings to rail clients, one of the world’s leading engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services companies, GHD, has signed an agreement with Spanish engineering and information management company Ayesa. ‘GHD sees the rail sector, particularly in the UK, as suffering from a lack of highly skilled and capable rail professionals in the high-speed area. The company is mobilising to enhance technical capabilities to help clients create value across the entire asset value chain,’ said John Dutton, GHD manager UK/Europe. ‘Ayesa’s skills and experience on highspeed projects in Spain complement GHD’s integrated rail capabilities across strategy, engineering, operations, safety, modelling and asset management.’ GHD’s recent projects include the Bedford to Kettering Capacity Improvement Feasibility Study for Network Rail and also strategic input for Arriva Trains’ ScotRail franchise bid in the UK.

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Visit www.ghd.com

Take me to your Masterscan onatest has released its latest range of the Sitescan and Masterscan series of flaw detectors. While retaining the previous ranges best features, the new range is more capable, reliable and straightforward to use. The user has the flexibility to customise their instrument and, with all units being field upgradeable, the adaptability of the unit’s capability over time is increased. New and standard software options can be customised as can the instrument’s hardware – users can choose the traditional tabletop style of case or the handheld case with the rotary wheel menu driver. The new range comprises four models: Sitescan 500S and D-50 and the Masterscan 700S and D-70. The 500S and D-50 offer entry-level broadband UT performance, whereas the 700S and D-70 – with the highest specification on the market – include eight filter settings

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Not taking it lying down round a quarter of disabled commuters are having to lie on the floor to use the toilet because facilities are not properly accessible or inclusive, according to a survey carried out by a disability support charity. Clos-o-Mat has produced the Changing Places toilet, which exceeds the specification available in wheelchairaccessible toilets with features including a hoist, adult-sized height adjustable changing bench and a privacy screen. Samantha Black, campaigner and creator of the petition that calls on the Prime Minister to improve the current situation, describes what many disabled people and their carers experience at such toilets: ‘The severely disabled or paralysed need carers to lift them out of the wheelchair and place them onto a flat surface, which is what I am forced to do with my sevenyear old son, often on a urine-soaked floor.’ To help transport managers resolve the issue, Clos-o-Mat

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Masterscan 700M

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(100kHz-22MHz), with 100-450V square wave transmitter and a 20-metre range. DAC functionality is available on all models and enables up to three custom DAC curves on screen. Data can be transferred to a PC using the new data management software, UTlity Pro, which also provides the end user with the ability to create and manage inspection plans, location notes, historical data and other asset management information. Visit www.sonatest.com has published an authoritative white paper, Provision of Accessible Toilets in Transport Sites, which covers the rationale and considerations for installing a Changing Places toilet. The company has also provided 2D and 3D CAD drawings, typical layouts and technical specifications to facilitate efficient project execution. Visit www.clos-o-mat.com

December 2014 Page 109


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BioClinics get the green light ioClinics has passed an industry audit for its workplace drug and alcohol tests. The Achilles’ Linkup scheme accreditation means that the testing services company is now an approved supplier of pre-employment and random testing to Network Rail and other companies and subcontractors in the industry.

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help construction contractors, building merchants and material suppliers meet stringent health and safety regulations operated by Crossrail, Network Rail and London Underground. The multi-camera solutions have been designed with the demands and challenges of the construction environment in mind and come with a three-year warranty as standard. All external cameras have an IP67 or IP69 enclosure rating and are made with robust steel. Errin McNamee, Intelligent Installations director, said: ‘This range of multi-camera solutions has been developed to meet some of the most demanding health and safety regulations within the UK. ‘Not only will they help improve road safety and enhance driver behaviour, they will also capture video footage in the event of an incident to defend against wrongful driving allegations and help to reduce costly insurance claims.’ Visit www.intelligent-installations.com Eyes wide shut new survey has revealed that nearly a third of the British public wouldn’t raise the alarm if they noticed suspicious behaviour that could be potentially security-threatening. Conducted by independent survey company OnePoll, the study has highlighted that despite advances in security technology and systems there is still a need for members of the British public to be proactive when noticing something out of the ordinary. 2,000 people across the country were presented with two scenarios and given a choice of responses for how they would react. One asked what people would do if they noticed a person acting suspiciously in a crowded public place, such as a train station or shopping centre. Half (54 per cent) said they would approach a nearby member of staff or authorities, 13 per cent would ring a confidential tip line but 30 per cent would do nothing at all. Dr. Dave Sloggett is a member of Transport Security Expo’s Advisory Board, feels that despite the technological advances in security nothing can replace the eyes of the public. ‘The public play a key role in being the ears and eyes on the street for the national security effort during major events, on transport networks and on a day-to-day basis in general.’ The upcoming Transport Security Expo (December 2nd-3rd) will offer the opportunity to look at lessons from the past, actions for the present and what the future of transport and events security will hold. Visit www.transec.com

Key info for survey professionals SA (The Survey Association) has produced a free guidance document for professionals carrying out survey work on the UK’s rail network. Available for download from the TSA website, the Railway Surveys Guidance Note is endorsed by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and includes key information on the necessary planning and certification required to carry out survey work safely and to Network Rail’s specifications and standards. The document also highlights some of the latest railway survey techniques and makes recommendations for the safest methods to achieve complete and accurate results within a limited time frame.

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A Workplace drug and alcohol testing is on the increase in the UK; BioClinics experienced a 470 per cent rise in the number of annual tests it carried out between 2010 and 2013. The company conducts its tests by collecting and analysing urine and breath samples through its network of clinics and mobile sample collectors across the UK and Ireland. The company is aiming to double the number of tests it carries out over the next six months, Nichola McChrystal, founder and scientific director, said: ‘This accreditation is a significant milestone, it will help the company secure long-term contracts with rail businesses and their subcontractors.’ Visit www.bioclinics.co.uk Keeping a watchful eye ntelligent Installations has launched a range of integrated multi-camera solutions for commercial vehicles working within the rail industry that it says will improve road safety, enhance driver behaviour and reduce insurance costs. Combining the latest internal and external cameras, mobile DVR’s (digital video recorders) and proximity sensors, the dedicated systems will

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Chris Preston, senior engineer with Network Rail’s Technical Services, track and civils’ team, said: ‘With the safety of all involved at the forefront, and very limited access time, it is crucially important that when public money is spent on railway surveying it is undertaken in the most appropriate manner. The TSA guidance note, along with Network Rail’s standards, should go a long way to addressing this.’ TSA produces a number of leaflets intended to provide members and their clients with information on various aspects of surveying and the procedures and regulations that may govern how a particular aspect of the survey is carried out. Visit www.tsa-uk.org.uk/for-clients/guidancenotes December 2014 Page 111


Customer Driven Rail Solutions

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RS Railways B.V., headquartered in Rotterdam is one of the leading private railway companies in Europe. Founded as an intermodal Operator back in 1994 for maritime volumes, ERS Railways diversified in the meanwhile into a maritime and continental operator/traction provider and delivers customer driven railway solutions throughout Europe.

Sustainability is key to our business Now and in future ERS Railways runs its long distance trains only based on electric long haul locomotives.In 2010, ERS Railways joined EcoTransIT in order to have access to a trusted source of information about emissions produced respectively saved.ERS Railways is authorized to issue certified reports on the amount of CO2 and other emissions saved. Reducing noise emissions by 50%? We are aiming to achieve it. On the noise reduction side ERS Railways together with our partners started a project introducing low noise brake systems. After the conversion to so called LL – brake blocks the wagons produce 10 decibels less (a halving of the perceived sound by local residents) on 30% of our trains running through the Rhine Valley. We plan to continue such kind of projects and are pro – actively searching for such kind of improvements, says Frank Schuhholz, Managing Director of ERS Railways. A wide range of rail solutions ERS Railways provides daily connections to and from several terminals in The Netherlands, Germany, Poland, The Czech Republic, Switzerland, Austria and Italy. ERS Railways also provides domestic rail services. Please visit our website www.ersrail.com and find out what we can do for you, by making use of our route planner. Contact details of our Sales departments Germany: +49 The Netherlands: +31 Poland: +48 Czech Republic: +42

(0)40 (0)10 (0)22 0(72)

7566 87303 4942838 266 8273 295 60 00

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Going for gold etwork Rail has awarded Gold Supplier status to DeltaRail under the Route to Gold initiative. The signalling control business is one of only two Network Rail suppliers to achieve the status – and the only one in the signalling discipline. The initiative is aimed at improving design on projects, reducing the need for costly checks by Network Rail project teams, and improving project delivery and efficiency. Over the last 12 months Network Rail has reviewed the number and categorisation of DRN’s (document review notices) for all of its suppliers across all disciplines. Gold Status has only been awarded to suppliers exceeding a rigorous set of criteria, with a focus on the quality and accuracy of design.

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Alistair Porter, DeltaRail operations director, said: ‘Being the first to be awarded Gold Supplier status is a huge compliment and recognition of DeltaRail’s continued focus on making a difference on its projects. ‘The company prides itself on delivering project designs to Network Rail that are accurate and require minimal checking, making sure that we do the work before it goes to our client.’ Visit www.deltarail.com

Recent New Members of the Rail Alliance as at end October 2014 Safe Route FM Provider of pedestrian tunnel systems www.saferoute.co.uk Dyer Engineering Specialist in precision machined, high integrity fabrications. The company handles repeat batches of components through to bespoke, large scale fabricated structures. www.dyer.co.uk DILAX Systems UK Established supplier of passenger counting systems to the rail industry. Also supplies seat management systems, including seat occupancy and seat reservation solutions. Link-up audited and IRIS certified. www.dilax.com Panasonic System Communications Co. Europe Delivers large-scale integrated B2B

NNC has got the power NC (North Nottinghamshire College) has joined forces with national railway safety training provider Intertrain (UK) to launch the UK’s first apprenticeship programme focusing on overhead power line engineering construction. The organisations will be supporting SPL Powerlines and Carillion Rail to train young apprentices at the Doncaster rail facility, which is one of a network of industry training centres around the UK. NNC principal John Connolly, said: ‘Our role as a college is to ensure that we provide businesses and organisations with the skills they need. The rail industry continues to be vital to the economic strength of this area and we are delighted to be utilising our skills and proven track record in supporting it.’ Visit www.nnc.ac.uk

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Cut down to size ail freight is bringing large savings in transport costs and reductions in CO2 emissions by handling 20ft containers. The units, which are half the length of more traditionally used shipping containers, help carriers of dense products, such as food and drink, stay within weight limitations. Larger containers often hit the maximum weight long before they’re full; a 40ft container can only carry around two per cent more weight than a 20ft container. As a result, logistics firms are turning to rail to transport them around the UK, picking up 25-30 per cent discounts, reducing costs and boosting their green credentials.

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technology solutions and services for the transportation industry. www.business.panasonic.co.uk iGuzzini Lighting UK Supplies LED lighting solutions for interior and exterior projects as well as design solutions and advice on all aspects of lighting. www.iguzzini.co.uk Lindapter International Inventor of steelwork clamping systems for structural connections on station buildings and bridges, as well as fittings and electrical equipment. www.lindapter.com Sicut Enterprises Manufactures and retails composite railway sleepers and bearers and associated products. www.sicut.co.uk R&I Consulting Rail and logistics advisory services. www.railandinfrastructure.co.uk

Nick Radcliffe, FreightArranger managing director, said: ‘It doesn’t make any sense to pay over the odds to take smaller containers along our already congested motorway network, when rail offers a straightforward and more cost effective alternative.’ The intermodal freight brokerage specialist has designed a system which makes it easier and quicker to use rail freight by providing a simple enquiry and booking screen online. It is designed for single or multiple container moves, bringing the benefits of rail freight to a wider community. Visit www.freightarranger.co.uk December 2014 Page 113


Business profile

Marketing metal Mercury is a multi-disciplinary marketing and communications business that specialises in raising client profiles, helping them to grow stronger and more profitable

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ercury’s 15-strong team, which operates primarily at a senior level, has more than 100 years’ experience in the rail industry – train operating companies, infrastructure and major projects. Led by managing director, Simon Taylor, who has more than 25 years’ industry experience, Mercury has established itself as one of the leading PR and marketing agencies serving all types of rail-focused businesses. Mercury’s in-house communications team comprises award-winning former journalists as well as PR, marketing and design specialists. The team has won more than 75 nationally recognised awards and is a member of the Chartered Quality Institute, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and the Chartered Institute of Marketing. Mercury’s directors have successfully represented more than 800 organisations across the private, public and voluntary sectors over the last 11 years. Services • strategic-level marketing and communications consultancy • campaign management • stakeholder and community relations • public relations

• • • • •

public affairs graphic design website design and development social media printed material.

Introducing our rail communications team 75 comms 5 in the last 325/24/7 20 on board magazines 12 months

awards

500 website

rail press office (with on call and out

100

years’ experience

in the rail

industry

120 media 800 positive 200

of hours service)

60

the last 12 months

interviews

updates

stories issued

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award bids

written in

MP and councillor meetings

internal newsletters in

the last

12 months

1,000

passenger

surveys undertaken

Extensive experience of working with: • Toc’s • Foc’s • infrastructure providers • first-tier infrastructure providers • infrastructure supply chain partners. Mercury’s primary objective is to make a positive difference to the organisations it serves, which it does by: • recommending the best ways to promote an organisation’s work internally and externally • advising on the best way to explain challenging performance and/or operational matters – helping to protect reputations • building brands and making organisations more profitable • enhancing reputations through strong and effective community, and stakeholder (including political), strategy and delivery • delivering multi award-winning marketing and PR campaigns • defending policies and actions where necessary Tel: 01482 782287 Email: info@mercury-marketing.co.uk Visit www.mercury-marketing.co.uk


® Energymiser DRIVER ADVISORY SYSTEM

Fixed Installation new build and retrofit

Tablet Windows and iOS devices

• Improves on-time running • Reduces Operational costs

Integrated ERTMS, TMS, ATO

Traffic Management System C-DAS

• Reduces Carbon footprint • An Essential Traffic Management Sub-system

TTG is a world leader in the provision of Driver Advisory Systems to the global rail sector. The company’s Energymiser® system is now deployed on 5 continents and has a projected install base of over 4000 systems in the UK and Australasia, by the end of 2014. Whilst the early adopters of the system have focused on the system’s significant capability to reduce operational costs through a reduction in energy and fuel usage, the global rail market is now seeing the additional benefits it provides in relation to improved on-time running, carbon footprint reduction and as an essential sub-system for the emerging Traffic Management Systems.

Our clients initially wanted the system deployed as a fixed ‘in-cab’ solution, but this has evolved to include deployment via iPads, tablets or integrated with existing on-train systems, such as a Train Management, or Traffic Management System. TTG’s development roadmap has been designed to ensure we can meet these changing needs.

www.ttgtransportationtechnology.com Email: enquiries@ttgeurope.com Call: +44 (0) 133 225 8867 (Derby), + 44 (0) 207 554 8805 (London), Derby: The iD Centre, Lathkill House, The rtc Business Park, London Road, Derby DE24 8UP London: Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, Bloomsbury, London, WC1H 9BB

Sustainable Technologies for Rail


Business profile

STEM the tide It is well known that the UK rail industry will experience a skills gap in the coming years. Phillip Hodgson details the impact the shortage is having and what can be done to address it

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pgrading the UK’s Victorian rail infrastructure has been a goal for successive governments as they’ve looked to the railways to provide a backbone for economic growth and commerce. Its importance has meant large-scale investment in the rail industry, even during the recession, and there are now a number of projects underway or planned for the future. Matchtech’s latest confidence index, which surveyed more than 3,000 UK engineers, shows that engineers expect the rail sector to see the third most significant growth over the next 12 months, after renewables and fossil fuels (oil and gas). Crossrail is currently demanding the talents of thousands of engineers, the development of HS2 is already gathering pace and over the next five years Network Rail will be spending £38 billion on new

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trains and station upgrades. Therefore, it is not surprising that rail engineering skill sets have never been in such high demand. Acute shortage The shortage of engineers in the UK is a problem across all sectors and finding the best solutions is widely debated. Within rail there is a very acute, niche shortage that unfortunately means work is being sent abroad, thus diluting the economic benefits of these massive infrastructure investments. Candidates versed in Bentley software – such as Microstation and Aecosim – are highly sought after and with the implementation of BIM (building information modelling), a new job role that requires more highlyskilled candidates, this shortage will only increase. Also witnessing this shortage

first hand is Aecom, the provider of professional technical and management support services. Aecom regional director, Jonathon Lock, said: ‘The transition to adopt BIM in the rail industry means there is a greater need for all technicians to develop their knowledge of engineering principles and become ‘design technicians’. For the use of BIM to be fully utilised, the gaps between the technician and the engineer must reduce – and almost merge – to a certain level.’ Software and BIM experts are particularly essential in the project development phase, which is currently extremely active in the UK. Over the course of the past five years the demand for specialist CAD professionals has increased to breaking point. The shortage is forcing pay rates up, fast. Since the middle of the recession to today, in some cases there has been a 36 per cent increase in hourly rates for CAD contractors. This is making projects more expensive but employers will only feed the frenzy of pay increases so much until they start to look abroad for cheaper resources. Firms with teams across the globe are quickly outsourcing design work to countries such as India. However, doing this can mean that large-scale design revisions are needed when the work comes back to the UK due to foreign design teams not being so close to the project – however, the cost benefits often outweigh these setbacks. But, outsourcing doesn’t reduce the need for CAD experts


Business profile

‘Recruiting people from abroad, as well as from different industry sectors, is something more employers should consider as they look to close the skills gap’

in the UK as they are still needed to review and amend the work at source. Vicious cycle Ultimately, more training is needed if the UK rail industry is to keep project design and development within its borders and minimise outsourcing costs and dramatic wage inflation. The industry obviously knows this but there is a vicious cycle of factors that means many firms are hesitant to invest the necessary resources in training staff. Employers fear losing newly-trained staff to companies that are willing to increase pay because they themselves have not invested in training their own staff. This concern is particularly prevalent

with contract staff who, by the very nature of their employment terms, have no obligation to stay on and ‘pay off’ their training costs by providing their new skills to the business. This means the risk of ‘wasted’ investment in training is high. Furthermore, the fact that the CAD field is so heavily contract led – with approximately 75 per cent of the market under contract terms – means even if employers train their permanent staff it barely scratches the surface of the skills gap. Speaking of a possible solution to the skills gap, Lock added: ‘If companies reviewed their career development for technicians they would probably be shocked at how out of date it actually

is’. Lock hopes apprentices will one day fill the gaps identified and says many companies are now actively recruiting and realising their importance by developing training plans to ensure they are looked after, but he emphasises this needs to be an industry-wide approach. Also, some employers are not being open minded enough in how they source talent. Recruiting people from abroad, as well as from different industry sectors, is something more employers should consider as they look to close the skills gap. Of course, in an ideal world, employers want a candidate that is UKbased (or local to their business) and with experience directly relevant to the project, but in reality employers can’t be that fussy. That is not to say that roles can’t be filled. Diversifying the candidate pool is proving a success in achieving this. Nevertheless, opening up to candidates from different industry backgrounds is not enough on its own to solve the skills shortage; other engineering sectors are having the same issue. There are numerous initiatives from the government and industry bodies that are focused on improving the uptake of STEM subjects and the flow of engineers graduating from university, but it will be some time before the industry sees the impact of these on employment markets. Being proficient in CAD requires work experience and on-site training, which is not something that academia alone can solve. There needs to be a concerted industry-wide effort to train contract and permanent staff in CAD, including the provision of relevant intern and work experience programmes to help universities in creating industry-ready graduates. Technology is moving fast and the industry needs to keep up to ensure the UK’s infrastructure investment benefits the UK engineering industry and also rail passengers. Phillip Hodgson is rail & property department manager at Matchtech

Tel: 01489 898148 Email: phillip.hodgson@matchtech.com Visit: www.matchtech.com

December 2014 Page 117


Business profile

In it for the long haul The past 12 months have seen continued growth in Victa Railfreight’s core operational support business. Profiled in Rail Professional issue197, it also has a number of developments that will expand on what it already offers the freight industry

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he provision of ground staff for shunting and train preparation duties to Foc’s has continued to expand with the training of staff in T3 Possession train working, adding another in-demand service to the portfolio. Victa Railfreight has also made a foray into passenger rail, providing shunters to deal with diverted services that require diesel haulage of stock that is normally electrically-hauled during engineering works in the North of England. A new addition to the company’s established third party competence management services is a comprehensive course that has been developed to deliver RSA (rail safety awareness) training to customers, suppliers and contractors who own or control non-Network Rail infrastructure – such as ports, depots and freight terminals. It is also open to staff who require access to such infrastructure, including rolling stock maintainers. Covering all bases ‘The course is designed to provide relevant advice on the sorts of risks encountered in these types of locations. The risks, which are not adequately covered by existing personal track safety training offered to those requiring to access Network Rail-controlled infrastructure, tend to be focused around engineering activities,’ said Colette Ranford, Victa operations development manager. Ranford devised the courses by utilising her many years of experience working in freight terminals, yards and depots. ‘As well as describing the generic risks and control measures associated with rail infrastructure, the courses include bespoke modules that address the specific issues posed by the particular infrastructure or type of operation that Victa provides training for. An example of this is the background noise of industrial processes, which makes it difficult for staff to be fully aware of rail movements.’ Strong progress Since their September launch, demand for the courses from Victa’s existing customers has been strong – with more than 30 one or two-day courses booked Page 118 December 2014

for delivery before the end of the year. Rollout to the wider industry will follow early in 2015. In line with industry principles the courses involve practical and theoretical assessment that, following successful completion, leads to a two-year RSA qualification with refresher training and requalification recommended afterwards. For Victa Railfreight, the most significant development of 2014 has been its application for a train operator’s licence, which is due to be awarded this month. The licence will enable Victa Railfreight to expand its operations to its existing customers by offering ‘last mile’ shunting operations over local Network Rail infrastructure. This could potentially enable Foc’s to make cost savings with the more effective use of expensive locomotive and train crew resources. In explaining the progress made, managing director, Neil Sime, said: ‘While the rail freight industry has made great strides in reducing its cost base and making more efficient use of resources since privatisation (which was commended by Sir Roy McNulty in 2011’s Value for Money Study) there

are still a number of ways in which further economies can be made. With new freight locomotives costing more than £2.5 million and a driver costing at least £60,000 per annum to employ, the industry needs to constantly look at different ways of operating.’ It is this background that has led to Victa applying for its licence which, although allowing non-passenger train operations nationwide, will be largely used to offer geographically limited freight operations in various areas of the UK. ‘Victa is looking at opportunities where the provision of more efficient shunting resources operating between traffic origin or destination and a suitable exchange point could allow the Foc to utilise its ‘trunk haul’ resources more efficiently. This would typically include the use of the shunting resource as part of the loading or discharge operation at the destination or origin point of the traffic, thus integrating these operations much more closely with the rail operation,’ added Sime. ‘The company is looking to utilise smaller traditional freight locomotives


Business profile

and make more effective use of multiskilled staff to resource these short distance operations.’ As well as cost efficiencies, Victa sees opportunities for traffic growth based on this improved utilisation, reducing unit costs and opening up possibilities for squeezing more out of the resources. From France to Essex One particular prospect for rolling out the Victa model is the ‘last mile’ requirement for a diesel locomotive to shunt trains the short distance from electrified reception siding into a nonelectrified terminal. Their first operation will be based at Barking, Essex, where a new service from France – operated by Europorte/GB Railfreight over High Speed 1 (HS1) five nights a week – requires such a service. Two Class 92’s haul the train, which originates from Dourges, near Lille, direct from Calais to the HS1 Exchange Sidings at Barking. It is from here that the ‘last mile’ resources take over, shunting the train across the non-electrified goods lines to the J G Russell terminal for the wagons to be unloaded and reloaded with traffic before returning to France. The shunt resources then return the wagons to the exchange sidings for the Class 92’s to work back to Calais. ‘The Barking operation is a good starting point as other opportunities exist for developing the sort of ideas that we have,’ said Sime. ‘It is one of the few locations in the UK with a large

number of traffic generating sites within twenty miles, particularly ports handling containerised business – in both the short sea and deep sea markets. ‘Victa can see opportunities to expand the local ‘last mile’ provision to feed traffic – received on trunk services and operated by Foc’s from key routes into Barking to, and from, the various ports – with originating traffic that has been marshalled into outbound services by Victa for the Foc’s to work with.’ As a result, this offers potential efficiencies for existing operators who currently utilise mainline resources to service these locations, often with part trains. It also offers the possibility of traffic growth by innovatively using local resources coupled with existing, or new, trunk services to/from the area. For this reason the decision was taken to use Class 20 locomotives for the shunt from the HS1 exchange sidings, rather than from a ‘classic’ shunting locomotive. ‘As well as providing redundancy and minimising performance risk in the shunt operation, the use of pairs of Class 20 locomotives offers opportunities for these feeder operations to be developed – Victa is in conversation with a number of customers regarding these possibilities,’ said Sime. The Dourges service started in early November, GB Railfreight has been providing the resources for the ‘last mile’ shunt until Victa receives its licence and has its staff trained, demonstrating the cooperation with Foc’s that Sime sees as

‘Victa’s Rail Safety Awareness courses address the needs of organisations with private rail infrastructure and those working on it, for whom PTS is not appropriate,’ Colette Ranford, operations development manager.

key to the Victa model working to the benefit of the industry. ‘The company has contacts at all levels of the major Foc’s and they have all expressed interest in what we are doing. Victa is aiming to improve the operators’ efficiency and offer new business opportunities rather than compete with them, which should be a win-win situation for everybody.’ These developments, coupled with prospects in the pipeline, show that 2015 will be another year of expansion for this customer-focused, innovative company. Tel: 01622 690978 Email: enquiries@victa-railfreight.com Visit www.victa-railfreight.com December 2014 Page 119


Still using pneumatic wipers? ... maybe it’s time to convert?

• • • • •

Arms Blades Motors (24v and 110v) Linkage systems Components & spares

Wiper conversion kits... from just a few hundred pounds Pneumatic windscreen wiper systems have been around for decades. When new, they work well, but as time progresses they can become prone to failure due to system leaks. Failed wipers result in inoperable trains, causing service disruption (costing both time and money). Thankfully, there’s an economic alternative. With over 30 years experience producing complete wiper systems, PSV Wypers Ltd have developed a number of conversion kits specifically for older running stock. These are a direct replacement for your pneumatic system, they’re reliable, easy to retrofit and can save thousands in maintenance costs and lost operating time. We’ve already a number of highly satisfied key rail customers successfully using our ‘plug and play’ replacement systems. Our motors and assemblies start at just a few hundred pounds, and we can offer both ‘off the shelf’ and bespoke solutions to help you easily make the switch.

Why not discover the benefits of electric wiper systems? Call us today and ask for our Rail Specialist, Paul Curry. Britax PSV Wypers Ltd, Navigation Road, Diglis, Worcester WR5 3DE, UK Tel. +44 (0) 1905 350500 | sales@psvwypers.com | www.psvwypers.com A Division of ESG | www.eccogroup.com Photo reproduced under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Credit Phil Sangwell.

Page 120 December 2014


Business profile

Power with control With unprecedented numbers using rail and ever-changing demands on the infrastructure, ensuring optimal performance from installed systems is vital – something that Socomec can help with

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s one of the market leaders in the development and manufacture of critical power systems, Socomec has designed low voltage power equipment that represents the very latest in UPS (uninterruptible power supply) technology for the mass transportation sector. The company also has a dedicated and rapid response critical power engineering team that is responsible for ensuring business continuity, optimising efficiency and guaranteeing the safe performance of its systems at key installations. Socomec’s latest UPS, emergency lighting and power, control and safety technology has been deployed in projects such as the King’s Cross, Metrolink and London Bridge redevelopments and the Thameslink and Intercity Express Programme. Big projects As part of Manchester’s Metrolink £1.4 billion expansion, Socomec UPS was selected to manage the introduction of its latest UPS technology in a major upgrade to the light railway’s critical power infrastructure. Socomec was tasked with replacing and reconfiguring nearly 30 UPS and battery systems within stop equipment rooms that serve crucial lines – one of the most significant developments in the network’s history. From design and build through to installation and commissioning, as well as ongoing maintenance, Socomec provides robust, efficient and complex critical power solutions that meet the rail industry’s exacting requirements. Andrew Wilkinson, regional managing director, said: ‘Through market investigation and as part of the company’s development work, Socomec identified that rail was not taking advantage of the latest critical power technology that is available in industrial and data centre applications. Therefore, Socomec developed a system specifically for rail applications, using the company’s industrial IP+ unit as a platform.’ Socomec’s IP+ Rail range has been engineered to provide the optimum energy efficiency for high-performance critical power applications, guaranteeing a robust network in the most challenging

operating environments. Housed in a compact, sturdy, steel-framed enclosure, the system has IP31 or IP52 ingress protection as well as anti-corrosion tropicalised circuit boards, meaning the system can operate in harsh environments where conductive dust or dripping water may be present. Furthermore, the electromagnetic disturbance immunity level is double the European standard requirement. The IP+ Rail range is the first UPS system to attain a London Underground Product Registration Certificate, no. 1492. The system is also available in a standard version for Network Rail, which uses low smoke, zero halogen cables and coated PCB’s (printed circuit boards). Emergency lighting and communications systems are vital in any rail infrastructure, as is its capability

to operate efficiently and reliably. At London Bridge, the country’s fourthbusiest station that brings around 50 million passengers into the city each year, it is especially important these requirements are guaranteed in order to protect passengers and staff. Socomec’s Emergency UPS range does this and, in the event of a major power failure or incident, provides emergency lighting that guarantees the performance of other emergency systems. Completing the UPS range is the company’s OLI (overhead line infrastructure) equipment, which delivers optimum energy availability by taking inputs from a 25kV overhead line and a 400V AC mains supply. In safe hands Socomec has experience in the field

December 2014 Page 121


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Business profile

Socomec Sirco switches make and break under load conditions, providing safety isolation for any low-voltage circuit. This patented load-break switching technology exceeds the latest industry requirements and has been developed to provide flexibility with control, circuit protection and the ultimate in safety performance.

of low voltage switching components and protection systems. ‘The company has taken switching and protection technology from across its business and adapted it to develop products that perfectly match rail’s demanding requirements,’ said Wilkinson. ‘Whether for system protection, guaranteed power availability or ongoing power metering, Socomec’s PCS (Power Control and Safety) business has developed a range of low voltage switching components and protection systems designed to support vital applications.’ Socomec’s automatic and static transfer switches enhance power availability and simplify the electrical architecture. The company’s standby and dual power supplies – Statys and Atys – are a range of manual and automatic transfer and bypass switches (from 16-3,200 Amp) that provide support to emergency systems and signalling, guaranteeing alternate and standby power availability. Supplied by two independent sources, Statys provides redundant power to mission-critical loads that increase the power supply availability by selecting the best quality power supply and preventing fault propagation. With a simple infrastructure design, system installation, extension and maintenance are straightforward. The AtyS sutomatic switching solution enables new and refurbished facilities to comply with the latest safety standards: BS 9999: 2008 and BS 8519: 2010. Supplied as a complete, manufacturer-certified, compact unit, AtyS integrates within the overall building management network to facilitate live monitoring of critical systems. Fuserbloc, a comprehensive range of fuse combination systems (from 20-1,250 Amp), protects people and key assets by preventing overload and short circuit. The reliable operation of safety systems that include fire protection and controlled access is critical within rail. Socomec’s range of comprehensive load-break switches, bypass and energy distribution solutions protect passengers and staff as well as key assets.

Improving quality and efficiency The effective management of energy costs starts with the accurate measurement and centralised monitoring of energy consumption. Socomec’s Countis and Diris energy monitoring solutions provides the control that improves both energy quality and efficiency by providing a real-time understanding of a site’s buildings and processes. ‘Socomec understands how important it is for its rail customers to retain control over their costs – both in terms of cost management and allocation. For energy metering and quality management, Countis and Diris – single and three phase active energy meters, power measurement devices and network analysers – support sub-metering and sub-billing requirements when used in conjunction with Vertelis software. Countis and Diris measure, analyse and monitor network data at every level within the power infrastructure,’ said Wilkinson. ‘Vertelis software then enables the provision of effective diagnostics. It’s an intuitive solution that is easy to scale, with accurate multi-fluid consumption measurement, centralised data capture and analysis combined with clearly displayed results. Power parameters are monitored in real time, flagging anomalies via email or SMS. Energy optimisation measures can be clearly identified and implemented, with possible cost savings of up to 30 per cent.’ Guaranteed throughout its lifecycle Socomec’s engineering team has the necessary trackside training and accreditations to install and support equipment throughout its lifecycle. ‘Socomec is aware of the the importance of maintaining vital equipment while also maintaining control of its customer’s facilities operating costs. The company can create a bespoke commissioning, inspection and maintenance package for any system architecture. ‘High quality engineering support is a vital component in any business continuity plan and unfortunately it is often overlooked until something goes wrong. Socomec believes a holistic approach to maintenance is imperative in order to achieve the very best performance from a system, as well as to make the ongoing system management as easy as possible,’ said Wilkinson. As well as providing system

‘Socomec understands how important it is for its rail customers to retain control over their costs – both in terms of cost management and allocation’

optimisation support throughout the product lifecycle, Socomec continues to develop next-generation technology for the rail industry. Following investment in research and development, and innovation projects dedicated to the unique challenges faced by rail and mass transportation providers, the business is making its mark. In summary, Wilkinson, said: ‘Whether planning a new installation or retrospectively upgrading an existing facility, Socomec can develop a lowvoltage electrical solution to follow the client’s precise requirements. The business’s experienced projects and engineering groups can work with engineering teams to optimise system performance and robustness.’ Tel: 01285 863300 Email: nick.golder@socomec.com Visit www.socomec.com December 2014 Page 123


HYDER

IS GROWING Following several outstanding project and framework wins, and transformational acquisitions, Hyder is growing. We have opportunities for a range of experts seeking professional development and rewarding experiences in:

ENERGY, THE ENVIRONMENT, HIGHWAYS, PROPERTY, RAIL AND UTILTIES. IF YOU SHARE OUR: • Client focussed approach • Commitment to excellence • Track record for delivery

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU. With our enviable client portfolio, and our leadership, equality and progression scheme, Hyder is the place for you to develop your career.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Visit hyderconsulting.com or email UKrecruitment@hyderconsulting.com

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Business profile

Everything under control? At a time of increased pressure on public debt and the big demand for rail infrastructure, project controls have a key role to play in achieving better outcomes. Andrew Hill explains

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he execution of projects is a complex business: the more parties involved and the more technical the interfaces, the more complex it becomes. Often the question is asked: why do projects fail? A better question might be – considering all the challenges faced from stakeholder, political, technical, and commercial sources – how is it that any succeed at all? Of course, it is a testament to the commitment of the people who make them work that so many prove successful. LogiKal Projects believes that the chances of success are greatly enhanced by having strong systems to track performance in the execution of a project, or portfolio, so that adverse performance can be quickly identified. This way, appropriate action can be taken to get back on course before the outcome of the project is threatened. In short, one can manage better if one measures well. The demand for improvement in project execution is clearly there. Client organisations and, therefore, contracting organisations are being required to make step changes in their performance in order to deliver more for less. This trend is set to continue and LogiKal Projects expects it to be relentless. There are many components to the improvement agenda and a better control system is certainly one of them. In recent years, the company is seeing more clients developing their capability in project controls and demanding improvements from their supply chain. The more forward-thinking organisations are responding well, improving their management systems and, as a result, their delivery. What’s needed to control projects? A great project control solution relies on the three dimensions of: processes, systems and people. These are the components that need to work together, and in harmony, to deliver overall control excellence – concentrating on one of these dimensions alone rarely produces a great outcome. In order to be at the heart of the management of projects it is also key to ensure that the leadership team believes in the use of project controls that drive a culture of

management by measurement. LogiKal Projects’ experience is that managers quickly catch on when they are required to know the numbers and other control parameters associated with their area of responsibility. Processes The chart (pictured) shows the most important areas of process to focus on in order to control a project. Starting with a fixed set of requirements, and through solution development of a fixed scope, the project needs processes to plan the delivery of that scope. It is therefore important to have processes for the agreement and management of the schedule, cost and risk plans and to integrate them to form a single PMB (performance measurement baseline). As it provides the basis for measurement, it is necessary to ensure that the PMB is accepted by all parties involved in the delivery. Once a PMB is formed it rarely stays intact for the duration of delivery; changes occur that need to be controlled and applied to the baseline so the current plan is represented by the

baseline adjusted by agreed change. It is also important to have a process that periodically reviews the plan holistically, ensuring that it remains optimal and adjusting it if it doesn’t. Having robust processes for measuring performance is essential to ensuring that the status of the project can be assessed against the plan. However, understanding status is of limited value unless there are

Requirements/Scope Management Schedule Management

Cost Management

Risk Management

Performance Measurement Baseline (PMB) Change Management

Integrated Baseline Review

Current Plan Performance Measurement

Performance Management

Assurance Framework December 2014 Page 125


Bring passenger load data intofocus focus in real-time into with a DILAX DILAXsystem system

Whether installed onboard or at the station, you can rely on DILAX solutions for compiling accurate passenger load reports. DILAX has been installing automatic passenger counting systems for over 20 years. Our unique adjustable infra-red bi-directional sensor has been shown to give excellent results in all kinds of installations. Our system now offers real-time counting capability for extended counting applications such as PIS announcements of load in each vehicle or for station announcements of train load. Please contact us for full technical details of this unique feature of the DILAX system. With over 600 rail vehicles installed with our systems on the UK network alone, we can claim to be the most experienced and trusted supplier of passenger counting systems in the UK. We are trusted by train manufacturers and operating companies alike to provide complete passenger counting systems from the doorway sensor through to the data management software. All our hardware components are designed by us and manufactured under stringent quality conditions and we develop our bespoke software solutions to our customer’s requirements using our own software development resources. When you buy an automatic passenger counting system from DILAX you can be sure your investment will bring consistent results for years to come. Call us today for advice and information about all aspects of automatic passenger counting systems.

DILAX Systems UK Limited. Unit 3, Calico House, Plantation Wharf, LONDON SW11 3TN Tel: +44 207 223 8822 Email: nigel.fountain@dilax.com Web: www.dilax.co.uk Page 126 December 2014


Business profile

processes in place to manage variances that arise. Consequently, performance management processes, which are based on the status information produced, are essential to allowing status information to influence project outcomes. Finally, it is always a good idea to have a system of assurance. This should generally consist of independent reviews to ensure that the key processes are working and that the status data can be relied upon. In LogiKal’s experience, organisations that operate these processes are likely to secure better outcomes for their projects. Systems There are many tools available to support the control of projects. Achieving success in the creation of systems infrastructure generally relies on: • process alignment. Choosing tools that directly support the requirements of the processes • coding integration. Using common

data structures in the different tools to ensure that information can be readily exchanged between different tools • a well-integrated tool set. This enables processes to be run quickly and reporting to occur promptly after period close with low levels of resource. Faster reporting means more timely intervention. People Project controls teams are dedicated to supporting the effective management of projects. It is important to have a team with strong training in the technical processes so that high standards can be achieved. However, often of more importance is finding good communicators who are capable of working comfortably alongside other members of the delivery team. This ensures that the control systems are trusted because they work as an integrated part of the delivery capability. How can things be improved? LogiKal Projects is dedicated to supporting organisations, particularly in rail, with the development and delivery of project controls solutions. Often a first step in the process is to assess current capability in the form of a maturity

‘LogiKal Projects is dedicated to supporting organisations, particularly in rail, with the development and delivery of project controls solutions’ assessment. The assessment will be used throughout interviews and document reviews, enabling current capability to be measured against best practice. An initial high level assessment is generally carried out free of charge. Based on this, LogiKal Projects is able to give advice on the most important areas to focus on for those that wish to improve their capability in improving projects.

Andrew Hill is managing director at LogiKal Projects

Tel: 0207 4044826 Email: info@logikal.co.uk Visit www.logikal.co.uk

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Business profile

Light at the end of the tunnel No amount of training, planning or risk assessing can mitigate against incidences of workplace fatalities. Each incident is unique, as are the people involved but do people really understand the after affects?

P

TSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a familiar term nowadays but the approach and delivery of treatment rarely lends itself to a simple, single approach. NICE’s (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines on the disorder suggest that EMDR (eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing) is its preferred choice. Other bodies recommend a course of CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) but do these treatments go far enough and deal with all aspects of recovery? Sharon Hall, SAS (Staff Absence Solutions) director, said: ‘Immediate access and a fluid approach to treatment are crucial when assisting people back to normal life. The therapy offered should be whatever the person responds to, integrating modern psychological and physiological therapies to address all aspects of their condition.’ Incidents of railway fatalities occur around 300 times a year – or five times a week – and the trend shows an increase year on year. Each incident sets off a chain reaction, resulting in emotional upset for those involved, their families and friends, colleagues and, of course, their employers due to diminished performance and absenteeism. Speaking of the experience gained while at SAS, Mark Eastwood, director, said: ‘After a 15-year railway career, my role within SAS has given me a valuable insight into the rehabilitation of people involved in incidents of fatality. I now understand that the rehabilitation of those involved can be improved dramatically with a different, more personal approach to treatment.’

assurance of confidentiality, insisting that the therapist did not take any notes at any stage of the treatment. The consultation revealed an incident years earlier at the same location, from which the driver had no side effects, resuming his post within 48 hours. This made the driver angry because he could not understand why this occasion had affected him differently. Following the latter incident, he was experiencing flashbacks of a decapitated body and felt that he could not function normally, drive his car, travel by train or go near the railway. His relationship with his family was starting to deteriorate and

he was suffering from insomnia. Asking if the therapist ever had to tell their family that they had killed someone, the driver described the vivid flashbacks as a constant interruption, whether he was with his family or attempting tasks around his home. He felt helpless and said the incident had turned his life upside down. Using a number of modern psychological techniques, the SAS therapist identified all of the issues affecting his life post-incident and addressed them. They began with the driver’s insomnia, which is an important part of any rehabilitation.

Case study Following an incident, a driver was referred by his employer on the same day and, at the driver’s request, treatment began two weeks afterwards. On initial presentation, the driver was hostile and guarded. He was reluctant to engage in any therapy and wanted December 2014 Page 129


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At each subsequent appointment, the therapist was able to discuss the steps of rehabilitation and, the driver, as he gained an understanding of his condition, was able to identify the changes being made. He realised that there were a number of differences between the two incidents, which lead to a heightened state of awareness on the second occasion, causing the long-lasting after-effects. The SAS therapist was able to quickly assess the driver’s state and deliver reactive therapy to assist with his shock, helplessness, guilt, insomnia, anger, headaches and trauma. His treatment then became proactive: addressing fear, loss, anxiety and stress. The driver also experienced back-pain, which was resolved by a physiological therapist. Throughout the treatment the SAS therapist worked with the driver’s GP to end his reliance on prescribed drugs. His feedback at the end of his treatment was simple: ‘You fixed me’. Rehabilitation was completed in 18 days and the driver was passed as fit to resume his full duties by an OHS (Occupational Health Service) doctor. What else should be considered? Each company involved in incidents of this nature will have their own policies and procedures to manage the investigation but consistency and more care for those involved would inevitably ease the process and deliver benefits all round. Liaison between the Toc, their OHS, human resources, EAP (employee assistance programme) and other agencies involved, such as the British Transport Police, would result in a consistent rail management approach across the industry, be considered best practice and then adopted by all. To reach this point, the following questions should be considered: • who was actually involved? (This should not be limited to those who were involved directly with the incident, but others who attended the scene or were part of the investigation) • is the incident high profile and covered by the national press? • is the deceased known to those involved? • are there any outside influences, such as issues at work or home? • how is the general wellbeing of those involved? • are those involved experienced or new to the role? • have they been involved in previous incidents? • was the incident at the start or end of their shift? • were they working a rest day or overtime covering a colleague? • was the scene of the incident turned into a shrine? • has the family of the deceased

• • • • • • • • •

attempted to, or made contact with those involved? has there been a reaction due to being a witness at Coroner’s Court? is there any previous trauma unattached to the incident that has been revisited? did they attend the body at the incident? was there any mechanical failure or damage to the train as a result of the incident? was there a death or is the person still alive? are those involved affected by peer pressure or mess-room banter? was the incident a suicide, trespass or accident? are prescriptive drugs prolonging the rehabilitation and adding to the symptoms? do the employees involved fear for their job?

Symptoms of PTSD Psychological: Stress, anxiety, depression, guilt, loss, hallucinations, insomnia, fear, helplessness, loss of motivation, shame, nightmares, avoidance, anger, irritability, phobia, drug/alcohol abuse. Physiological: Muscular pain, IBS, tinnitus, sweating, trembling, headaches, dizziness and stomach aches. What should treatment look like? Staff Absence Solutions is of the opinion that treatment must be independent and confidential throughout and fluid to reflect progress made at each appointment with a therapist. If consultation fails to identify all of the facets involved, the recovery would be either incomplete or unnecessarily slow, causing additional issues at the time of the treatment, or in the future. Assistance should be offered

‘Staff Absence Solutions is of the opinion that treatment must be independent and confidential throughout and fluid to reflect progress made at each appointment with a therapist’ immediately so that those involved understand that support is there when they need it most. This would reduce the reliance on prescription drugs, help people understand their condition and provide the strategies they need to cope with their symptoms, until they are back to normal life and can return to work. There is no doubt that there is change happening. The rail industry is taking a lead in the management of PTSD. It can accomplish even more by considering modern, leading-edge therapies to invest in the health and wellbeing of their employees and return them back to normal life. There is still work to be done and SAS will continue to pioneer a renewed approach. For more information, contact Mark Eastwood. Tel: 07927 945839 Email: info@staffabsencesolutions.com Website: www.staffabsencesolutions.com December 2014 Page 131


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Pointing safety in the right direction Many hand-operated switches at older depots are not fit for purpose and liable to cause injury. Zonegreen has devised an automated solution that reduces strain and improves efficiency

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ail safety specialist, Zonegreen, is expanding its product range to improve efficiency and working conditions for train drivers and shunters. The Sheffield-based firm has launched Point Converter, which automates the traditional manual levers that alter the course of tracks. Christian Fletcher, Zonegreen’s technical director, said: ‘Heavy handoperated switches are still a common sight at older rail depots and put significant physical strain on the driver or shunter. Accidents at points are also a big risk, as they are often located in hazardous external areas with uneven terrain and

obstacles, increasing the risk of slips, trips or falls.’ Zonegreen’s Point Converter attaches directly to the hand point mechanism and moves the switch with a hydraulic actuator. Multiple units can be linked and operated from a distance, using a remote or cab mounted handset that enables predefined routes to be programmed in advance. The switch position is then moved automatically, which allows the train to reach its desired location without physical intervention and exertion. Greater exposure to risk According the Rail Safety and Standards

Board’s 2013/14 Annual Safety Performance Report, injuries to drivers and shunters account for almost one third of all accidents in rail yards and depots – with 68 per cent of these resulting in major injuries. Operating manual points also has occupational health risks, increasing the likelihood of lasting damage to the back, shoulders or neck. ‘The simplest way to improve rail safety is to remove individuals from the most dangerous situations and the company’s latest technological innovation does that. Zonegreen’s research and development led to the creation of the Point Converter and the company is

December 2014 Page 133


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Business profile

confident it will help prevent accidents, reduce employee suffering and days off from work,’ said Fletcher. ABP (Associated British Ports) was the first champion of Point Converter, installing the devices at its operation in Hull. The technology is improving safety on the port’s freight lines, which are used to transport deliveries of sustainable

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forest products from Scandinavia to a biomass silo serving the Drax power station, North Yorkshire. This year, ABP Hull has moved 1.3 million tonnes of biomass material, alongside the diverse range of other bulk commodities it receives. The port has more than 100 freight train drivers who, until Zonegreen’s intervention, were

required to leave their cabs to pull points on the route to the silo manually. 11 Point Converters were installed at the port, controlling four roads to the biomass silo. Remote handsets operate the points, allowing routes to be set in advance from any location in the facility, adding considerable time savings to the health and safety benefits for the drivers. As Fletcher explained: ‘Human error is often a key factor in accidents and implementing new products and guidelines to limit this unknown quantity is proof that we learn from our mistakes. Evidence shows that hand points are still putting workers at risk and to maintain the safety standards the UK rail industry is so keen to uphold, action needs to be taken. ‘At ABP Hull, concerns about the welfare of drivers have been allayed. Zonegreen is now receiving enquiries about Point Converter from across the world and it is set to become a valuable addition to the company’s range of rail safety solutions.’ For more information about Point Converter and Zonegreen’s innovative depot safety products, get in contact Tel: 0114 2300822 Email: info@zonegreen.co.uk Visit www.zonegreen.co.uk

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Keeping tech on track For onboard rail applications, ensuring maximum availability of security, surveillance systems and passenger’ infotainment’ services is critical. Santos Muro explains why costeffective deployment, operation and maintenance is equally important

P

roblem: How to bring the latest security and surveillance systems, as well as onboard entertainment technologies (infotainment) – such as passenger display screens and WiFi – with reliability crucial for Toc’s and their passengers. Solution: Designed for harsh industrial environments, robust Ethernet-managed switches like the Korenix JetNet 6710G have the ability to check the connectivity status of the attached device. If the device becomes unresponsive, it can be automatically restarted and a notification of the incident is then sent to the requested parties – this type of solution allows for the first-line support step to be carried out regardless of the location or time of the incident. The corresponding alerts can be tracked in order to build a clearer picture of whether a particular device or unit is in need of repair or

maintenance, which can be completed without the train having to be removed from the track. Factors to consider: More data is being used than ever. A gigabit is now typically required, which is sufficient for providing onboard CCTV and WiFi services. For network hardware, such as Ethernet -managed switches and end devices (CCTV cameras, infotainment displays and WiFi technologies) it is important to consider the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) standards relating to PoE (Power over Ethernet), as some hardware manufacturers provide non-standard versions. The original IEEE standard for PoE devices is designated as 802.3af, normal PoE maximum is 15.4 watts per port. However, this power rating may not be sufficient for the latest high power cameras; many IP cameras now have

integral motors and drives or other features such as fans or heaters. Even if an existing rail carriage network already has a variety of nonPoE switches installed, the IEEE PoE+ standard specifies that plugging in a nonPoE unit to the network will not harm the device. This is due to power not being sent until the switch and the end device have confirmed via an automatic system check that PoE is actually required. Another key benefit of deploying PoE/PoE+ switches is the reduction in deployment costs because additional cable runs are not required throughout the carriages. Less requirement for expensive cabling means lower costs but also a reduction in the total weight, which contributes to improved fuel efficiency. By deploying managed switches, service intervals for maintenance can be increased and savings made by monitoring

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onboard equipment and systems. A relevant example is the deployment of a managed switch to monitor a safetycritical system: a rail carriage door. Early indications of wear or impending component failures can be reported early and any remedial action taken in plenty of time before the door system fails. Other advantages of PoE/PoE+ switches are their variety of manageable features, including: • power device ‘keep alive’ check. A managed switch periodically communicates with end devices in order to check they are working. If there is no response the switch waits, cuts the power and then reboots the end device • power scheduling. The system can be set up to schedule provision of power to end devices, which can be switched off at certain times of the day when they are not needed • power priority. If there is a power drop on the network or emergency back-up power is required, the system can be set up to provide power to only the most critical end devices.

and +40°C. However, over the past few years, temperatures across Europe and the UK have been approaching record highs and, particularly in more rural locations, record lows. Designed from the component up, Korenix UK’s switches typically offer operating temperatures of -40°C to +75°C – although this will vary from one switch manufacturer to another – and have undergone rigorous specialist testing to ensure that they can operate reliably at extreme temperatures. • onboard power: unlike most industrial environments, on a train availability of power is much less reliable and is more prone to spikes and voltage drops. This means that most rail devices that have switches require a very wide operating range in order to ensure not

to ensure security of data between different vendors sharing the network. These types of features enable priority to be given to certain types of data traffic over the network. For example, vendor systems that are either safetycritical or provide high security data can be given higher priority than other vendor systems over the network. • software: all managed switches should operate on ‘open’ connectivity standards, allowing for complete interoperability with other products and vendors. Switches should be provided with software that allows full configuration into any network topology. As with all software, patches and bug fixes are required from time to time, which are standard across all reputable switch manufacturer ranges

Hardware Specifications All switches should be certified to the relevant European Rail standards (i.e. EN50155 and EN50121-4), the following factors must be also carefully considered before selecting a suitable supplier of managed switches: • extended life: most rolling stock and rail projects require an extended unit shelf life of 15 years or more. Industrial, switches should therefore be selected on the basis that they would satisfy this extended product lifecycle, allowing the train operator to ‘fit-and-forget’. This also means that any hardware spares and software updates must be available throughout this period. • vibration-resistance: for switches that may be installed close to a railway line, this is another critical factor to consider. Similarly, if the switches are installed onboard a train, they will have to withstand the high vibrations from the engine and from the continual movements of the carriages. Almost all onboard systems have issues with loose connections or internal components failing due to high vibrations, typically after only a couple of years of service. • temperature rating: often, surveillance applications and passenger infotainment systems, have at least one managed switch located in each carriage or in a trackside junction box. In the case of surveillance, other switches are installed outside — at the point of the CCTV camera. Most switches operate between 0°C

only continued operation, but also to prevent damage to the equipment. For example, on train engine start-up, power is often cut off completely to the switches initially and then put on again after a short period of time – switches must be designed to cope. • unmanaged switches: some rail operators are still considering the use of older, unmanaged switches for onboard train solutions. While these switches can seem more cost effective in the short term, due to their lower unit cost, new applications will be identified in the long term that will almost certainly require managed switches, meaning more investment will be needed. Unmanaged Ethernet networks do not have the variety of data management and security features such as VLAN, QoS and IGMP (see ‘software’ below), which are used

and are typically free-of-charge to customers. Switches should also be supplied with built-in protocols (switch ports) such as VLAN’s (virtual local area networks) to allow multiple companies/vendors to share the same physical network/backbone installed on the train, while simultaneously ensuring full separation of data. Managed switches also enable detailed reporting of network activity, allowing for maintenance to inspect what has been happening to a particular onboard device over time, ensuring the correct product support.

Santos Muro is business development manager at Korenix UK

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December 2014 Page 139


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Business profile

The Main Line to recovery JMP has carried out a study into the benefits that service improvements to the East Coast Main Line could bring to the UK economy. The report reveals why the steps it recommends would prove positive

J

MP is one of the UK’s leading independent specialist transport consultancies. Established in 1964 it now has ten offices in city centre locations across the UK, stretching from Bristol to Aberdeen. Employing more than 170 professional planners, economists, forecasting specialists and engineers, the company has an annual turnover of around £10 million. Its clients include rail operators, developers, local and national government and government agencies. Being independent and relatively small scale is important to JMP as it enables it to deliver a high level of personal service from enthusiastic and skilled professionals who are focused on their clients’ needs. It is a factor that sets it apart from many of its much larger multinational multidisciplinary competitors. The company’s strong focus on sustainability is reflected in

its strategy which states: ‘JMP’s passion and commitment to sustainability will be the key factor that will continue to differentiate it from its competitors, not just in the services that it delivers but in the way that it governs and manages its business’. Unsurprisingly, rail is an important focus for JMP. The increasing interest in how rail supports the economic growth of the regions and cities outside of London and can assist in rebalancing the UK economy has resulted in a surge of interesting commissions for JMP. How rail can help rebalance the UK economy ECMA, the consortium of more than 30 ECML (East Coast Main Line) local authorities and regional transport partnerships commissioned a study to provide the economic evidence to underpin its manifesto for investment in

the ECML, which is worth £5-9 billion to the economy. The ECML manifesto ECML is one of the most important rail arteries in the country, JMP’s brief was to quantify the GDP impact of service improvements on the economies of settlements along the length of the route from London to the north of Scotland. From this a series of conditional outputs would be developed for services on the route that would maximise the potential benefits of rail investment. The work involved a series of activities to understand the issues, carry out analysis and ultimately derive conditional outputs. The first stage involved an assessment of the economies that the route passes through to provide an understanding of the area’s characteristics, the aspirations for the local economies and the impact that rail services might have on them. Secondly, a series of eight stakeholder December 2014 Page 141


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events were held along the route from Stevenage to Aberdeen to expand upon the issues identified and to understand specific service aspirations. These events involved both the public and private sector with representatives of local authorities, LEP’s and the business community. This involvement helped to build a positive relationship with stakeholders over a wide geographical area and those who shared contrasting visions for the service provided in their area.

The third aspect of the work involved estimating the wider economic impact of improving rail services in the ECML corridor. This was achieved using a modelling tool developed by JMP based upon Network Rail’s approach to assessing agglomeration impacts within the market studies it carried out in 2013. The approach modelled the impact of providing services at three different service-level standards, defined by average journey speeds and service frequency. This was necessary in order to provide a consistent measure of the wider economic benefits of uplifting services from their existing levels. The use of this approach also helped align the results with that taken by Network Rail in its own long term planning, providing a direct methodological link between the ECMA work and Network Rail’s own processes. The result of these separate stages allowed a clear and objective set of conditional outputs to be delivered that addressed the aspirations of stakeholders. The JMP research showed that the economies linked by the ECML are worth well in excess of £300 billion each year to the UK, with significant potential for growth. This could be worth in excess of £5 billion if rail connectivity were

to be improved along the whole route. Furthermore, the predicted economic benefits increase to around £9 billion if the ECML were to be improved alongside the construction of HS2 – allowing high speed trains to connect Leeds, York, the North East and Scotland to Birmingham and London. Future plans Since producing this report, JMP has had several commissions from local authorities, LEP’s and rail operators to undertake similar pieces of analysis that evidence the wider economic benefits of their rail investment proposals. With recent announcements by the Chancellor and Sir David Higgins of plans to support the economic growth ambitions by improving rail connectivity across the north of England, it is likely that this will be an important subject for the industry for some time to come. For more details on JMP’s rail planning and economics capabilities, contact Alan Beswick, executive director/ Lee White, passenger transport sales sector director Email: alan.beswick@jmp.co.uk Tel: 0113 979714 Email: lee.white@jmp.co.uk Tel: 0121 230 1429 Visit www.jmp.co.uk

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Business profile

Counting the cost There are many factors to consider when planning for large scale infrastructure projects. Viaduct outlines its four principles that it believes will bring success

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hings are not always as they seem. At first glance Viaduct may appear to be a traditional cost consultancy but dig a little deeper and a consultancy with a different approach is revealed. Does it provide general commercial advice for all infrastructure projects? Yes. Does it have the years of experience necessary to manage the complicated cost elements of transportation projects? Yes. Can it provide commercial advice from business case preparation through to final account stages? Yes. What differentiates Viaduct from every other cost consultant that also provides these services? The following values demonstrate a fresh approach to the everyday methods of commercial management and estimating. Sustainability Sustainability is Viaducts’ key driver, whether it is the infrastructure projects themselves, the relationships built with business partners or just the office supplies, all are considered and managed. Projects should be sustainable and Viaduct will propose alternative

solutions to the normal or standard suggestions, ensuring that its clients get to make choices on how to achieve it. Any approach to sustainability and social contributions that a company makes should not be forced – nor simply a second thought – and should be its primary value. Value, value, value Any organisation involved in economic evaluation and commercial management should be constantly looking for ways to save the client, projects and end users money. Value for money does not necessarily mean reduced quality but can instead be achieved in many other ways, including innovation, collaboration and whole life cost analysis. In short, Viaduct does not wait to carry out value engineering or value management tasks; it does it as a matter of course. This stance stems from the belief that all commercial advisors should be offering sustainable and efficient options included within their fee, not waiting to be specifically asked to engineer extra value. Honesty pays Viaduct also promises to give customers exactly what they pay for but cannot guarantee that they will always want to hear what it has to say. The company’s approach to all of its projects is with the same outlook: to tell the truth even if the truth is hard to hear. Budgets have to be maintained, not stretched or broken, so the commercial advice given presents the facts. Being honest allows clients to make the correct decisions, which will help achieve the right level of quality of project for the budgets available using planned or alternative methods. In the long term, honesty helps with the efficient management of short and long term goals. Traditionally different While Viaduct believes in the significance of this new attitude to commercial management within the infrastructure sector, a strong and healthy respect of traditional methods remain. These new ideas – and embracing new service provisions – supplement the core skills and qualities required to excel in this service. New attitudes supplement the

provision of new services, such as its Project in a Box initiative, which provides business case planning and support and also direct routes to private finance for infrastructure projects. Advanced whole life cost models, carbon capture calculations and working closely with industry innovators such as PCAT (PreCast Advanced Track), demonstrates the company’s fresh approach to an industry service. For more information, contact Mathew Taylor Tel: 01872 581978 Email: info@viaduct.uk.com Visit www.viaduct.uk.com December 2014 Page 145


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Business profile Each had their own different criteria and differing aspects which made the scaffold more challenging. With the paint

All wrapped up

work on the bridge in need of stripping back to bare metal

Client: Tube Line

and repainting, the lead in the old paint was a real issue

Quality Scaffolding cladding to the scaffold and a layer of steel decks covered Since 1975 to the waterway below. The combination of shrink wrap

with polythene sheeting topped with 18mm marine plywood

Working from height can produce some big challenges. Grenrose Scaffolding explains ensured there would be no contamination to the canal. how it overcame a problem on a project by employing some innovative techniques

G

With this project in mind Grenrose recently arranged to

renrose Scaffolding is a design solutions but also for out conceptual information, also carry the necessarysafety training for their keyGrenrose operatives in works contractor that has provided guidance. Grenrose is ready to help closely with health and safety consultants two new areas. scaffold and access services companies that need advice on special and safety groups. Safety on site is of throughout London and projects and the company’s creative and paramount importance in every aspect the South East since 1975. Based in resourceful solutions prove beneficial of Grenrose’s service and a strong health resolve these issues we used two processes to help us Hertfordshire, the family-run company’s in a wide range of areasTo – from health and safety work ethic is encouraged and reliability and exacting standards have and safety and time management to costupheld. Direct supervision ensures all complete the project safely and successfully. given it the attributes to prosper. saving benefits. works are planned and coordinated prior These values are the foundation on to being carried out, minimising the risk We were approached by set Tube a scaffolding which Grenrose has built and itsLines to produce Investment in people to people and property. An approach 1. as its people. policies and standards, which are still A company is only as good that has seen Grenrose accumulate one which could used for a railway in placestructure today. The setting ofbe realistic It isbridge for thiscrossing reason that Grenrose is of the best safety records in the scaffold and measurable objectives have proved dedicated to developingTufcoat its employees, industry. scaffold wrap is heat shrunk ‘drum tight’ around thekey grand union canal. Here are some oftraining the issues to be the to Grenrose’s continual andthat improving its workforce As an approved supplier to the rail improvement and ensures that its and also maximising thescaffolding competence of eliminates Industry the Achilles Link-up scheme, which the via problem of detached we came across: professional and efficient service is its entire workforce through investment Grenrose offers a tailored scaffold service delivered the client, inspans skills the and safety training. Grenrose’s staff experience and sheets and emergency with repairs. In imbued addition,with because Thetobridge whichwhatever, is owned by Tube Lines wherever and whoever they may be. on-site operatives are registered with operatives comprehensively trained and Grenrose many years’ experience recognised schemes, such as CSCS vetted to the highest standards. individual sheets are heat welded, Tufcoat eliminates the Grand has Union Canal, and a section of goods line owned of providing services to the UK’s mainline (Construction Skills Certification and underground Scheme), and have all the necessary The following case study gives examples holes or gapsplant associated with traditional types of reinforced by Networkrail Rail.network. Its large portfolio of work encompasses many and tool operator training required for of the practical solutions that Grenrose sheeting. From encapsulation toits internal partitions, types of access work, including new each job. offers to clients. builds, refurbishments, temporary shelters The operatives’ supervisors and Tufcoat environmental containment and dangerous structures. managers have the training andprovides unbeatable Project: Grand Union Canal Often, clients have important projects experience to deal with any issues that Client: Tube Lines andteam, weather protection.Client Brief: Grenrose was tasked by Tube that require careful planning, which may arise. Bolstering this in order is why so many companies have come to help them remain at the forefront Lines to produce a scaffolding structure to depend on Grenrose not just for of legislation and to receive the latest that could be used for a railway bridge

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Business profile

this project, until we teamed up with an old trusted supplier Haki. Haki had recently invented a new system to aid with the installation of beam work. The Derrick system fits onto the existing scaffold beam and this cantilevered system allows the scaffolder access 2.5 meters under the bridge, safely. With the use of these innovative products we were able to the reduce the erection time byBoth upcompanies to 40%have of their traditional crossing Grand Union Canal. Among own the projects pressing issues were the Tube 4pp_A4_Brochure_digital.indd 3 Lines-owned bridge, which spans the tube fitting. Grandand Union Canal, and a section of a goods line, owned by Network Rail.

different criteria and differing requirements that made constructing the scaffold all the more challenging. The paint work on the bridge needed to be

This project was carried out b stripped back to bare metal and repainted, however the lead in the old paint was 07/01/2013 a real issue to the waterway below. As 17:07 a solution, Grenrose decided upon a combination of shrink-wrap cladding to the scaffold and a layer of steel decks covered with polythene sheeting topped with 18mm marine plywood, ensuring that there would be no contamination to the canal. The company arranged to carry out the necessary training for their key operatives in two new areas:

manager, Mr Alan Quorn. Sho any aspect of these works or

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Shrink-wrap Tufcoat scaffold wrap is heat shrunk ‘drum tight’ around scaffolding, eliminating the problem of detached sheets and emergency repairs. In addition, due to individual sheets being heat welded, Tufcoat eliminates the holes or gaps associated with traditional types of reinforced sheeting. From encapsulation to internal partitions, Tufcoat provides excellent environmental containment and weather protection.

M: 07810 185903 | E: alan@

Suspended scaffold Accessing the bridge was always going to be problematic on this project, until Grenrose teamed up with scaffolding supplier Haki – the company invented a system to aid with the installation of beam work. The Derrick system fitted onto the existing scaffold beam, with the cantilevered system allowing the scaffolder access 2.5 metres under the bridge, safely. With the use of these innovative products, Grenrose was able to reduce erection time by around 40 per cent compared with traditional tube and fitting. The combination of using the shrinkwrap together with Haki’s suspended scaffold system proved to be a successful and cost-effective solution for the Grand Union Canal project. It also highlighted Grenrose’s commitment to giving its clients the careful attention required to supply a quality service that meets the clients’ requirements. To discuss this article or an upcoming project, get in contact. Tel: 01438 316380 Email: contracts@grenrose.co.uk Visit www.grenrose.co.uk December 2014 Page 149

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Business profile

Managing your assets For Toc’s, accurate asset knowledge is essential. Omnicom Engineering develops technological asset monitoring solutions that give companies the reassurance they need

O

mnicom Engineering is one of the leading engineering companies that specialises in the development and integration of software and hardware platforms for asset survey and fixed and mobile asset monitoring. Over the past 18 years, it has developed a reputation for providing pioneering products and solutions to the transport industry by utilising the latest technologies. Omnicom delivers products and solutions that, through the provision of accurate asset condition knowledge, enable clients to concentrate on their core business: managing their infrastructure assets. The benefits to the infrastructure owners are shown throughout the asset lifecycle: from surveying for design, assessing condition for maintenance through to determining renewal requirement. Omnicom’s product range can be deployed readily through purchase or as a service offering and has received a number of UK innovation awards over the past decade. Providing opportunities The Omnicom team also specialises in developing bespoke systems that meet specific customer needs with the integration of appropriate hardware and software. Advances in technology are providing opportunities to manage the infrastructure base more efficiently and effectively, Omnicom prides itself on making this possible through a combination of technical skill and transport sector domain knowledge. It integrates the following key components into business solutions: imaging platforms; inertial measurement; distance measurement (laser); GNSS; and high speed data capture. A design and build capability, including software development, provides the means to meet customer-specific requirements that include embedded software/firmware; high speed data capture and networking; data processing and storage; data visualisation; and decision support tools. Omnicom also offers a consulting service that specialises in helping clients understand where current advances in technology for infrastructure monitoring could be of benefit. Generally, this involves the review of business requirements

(standards, compliance, business processes) and the assessment of existing systems and technologies with a cost benefit. The company can provide tools and services to enable clients to automate their data workflows as well as enabling the visualisation of spatial data in an environment that engineers are familiar with. Getting the picture Omnicom has wide-ranging experience in providing image-based solutions to the rail industry. Examples include the provision of train borne image acquisition systems, video processing systems, automated image processing techniques and data-visualisation tools. Over the last ten years, it has worked to create ‘as is’ asset inventory designs using OmniSurveyor3D®, a video surveying system that brings the network to the desktop. The company has also

implemented an image processing system known as OmniVision®, for plain line pattern recognition, which automates the detection of defects. Drawing on this expertise, Omnicom can provide machine vision feasibility studies for target business processes. A recent study involved developments relating to automatic recognition of vegetation encroachment on rail infrastructure. The findings showed

limitations through the development lifecycle and established a set of recommendations for future work. Omnicom’s integrated laser video surveying system provides accurate point to point measurements and can be fitted to a road rail vehicle, providing easy access to rail networks. Centro used this system for gauging when sourcing new rolling stock rather than carrying out a time consuming and costly manual survey on track. The system was used over a number of night shifts to create an accurate 3D model of the Centro network. Omnicom, in association with the chosen vehicle supplier (CAFF), created vehicle envelopes of the proposed trains that were to be deployed on the network. The vehicle envelopes could then be loaded into Omnicom’s OmniSurveyor3D software, enabling the system to automatically identify the locations of potential tight clearance areas where the train envelope and infrastructure could clash. Omnicom has detailed knowledge of location technologies; it has completed work for UK mainline rail with respect to the introduction of the European Train Control System. The purpose was to assess the various technologies’ capabilities in meeting the requirements of train location determination for this system. Also included was the possibility of replacing lineside location beacons with an onboard navigation system. Tel: 01904 778 100 Email: info@omnicomengineering.co.uk Visit www.omnicomengineering.co.uk December 2014 Page 151


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Business profile

Classified cover Aided by more than half a century’s experience, Railinsure uses confidential and effective methods to bring competitive liability insurance deals to high-risk industries

R

ailinsure.co.uk is a trading name of specialist commercial insurance providers, Direct Insurance Group, and has been meeting the needs of the UK’s high risk industries since 1996. As one of only 190 registered Lloyds’s brokers, Railinsure has direct access to the Lloyds and London markets, which negates the need for a middle man and means all negotiations are made directly with the insuring market. Just some of the areas Railinsure is able to advise and place coverage for are: • • • • • • • • • • •

employers’ liability public/products’ liability contract works plant/machinery motor fleet commercial combined personal accident directors’ and officers’ liability professional indemnity performance bonds legal expenses.

The rail industry employs more than 25,000 subcontractors engaged in work on, or adjacent to, the railways. In this highly regulated industry it’s imperative that the insurance programme for contractors and suppliers covers them correctly. An alarming number of Railinsure’s enquiries with rail contractors and suppliers highlight pitfalls in their existing policies. These range from inadequate limits of indemnity, wrongly described trading activities, working exclusions and unworkable requirements, to name a few. With most buyers unaware their policies may not respond in the event of a major claim, it is important that industry experts who understand the exposures are used when arranging insurance cover. The senior team at Railinsure has more than 50 years’ combined experience when dealing with railway exposure. From line maintenance; signalling; civil engineering; labour supply and recruitment; to training; safety consultants; design;

plant hire and manufacturers, the company’s depth of experience allows it to tailor terms and coverage to suit each individual, each business and their unique exposures. What normally happens For many, when it comes to tendering their insurance programme, the primary objective is to save money. While cost control is a very important aspect of running a business, the impact of an insurance policy that fails to respond can mean financial ruin and closure. Typically, brokers tend to use a standard method to provide alternative

December 2014 Page 153


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Business profile

terms in respect of insurance. This method is calculated through a review of existing coverage followed by a mass market of the portfolio to a panel of insurers, which is ultimately aimed at reducing price (and sometimes coverage). Ironically, this approach can actually have a negative long term impact as many insurers see the business year after year without actually winning the business. This general approach is simply one of driving their rates down, thus putting them off future tenders. Why Railinsure is different The only long-term alternative in achieving the right results is to work exclusively with a broker that implicitly understands your operation. What’s also important is that it has the direct market contacts to secure long term, appropriate coverage at an acceptable price because this will avoid the volatility in rates witnessed in previous years. Railinsure is an industry specialist and has numerous supporting, A-rated insurers on its panel. However, the company’s objectives are simple: to review coverage, advise on exposures and create a bespoke, mutually-agreeable programme before speaking confidentially with the client’s supporting insurers. This confidential review allows businesses to benchmark their arrangements without the arduous renewal process that tends to lead to a large portion of management time being taken up as a result of meeting with various brokers and obtaining information on their behalf. Furthermore, it prevents upsetting any relationships the client has with existing insurance providers who may or may not try to disrupt the process for their own short term benefit. Case study Optimal Rail approached Railinsure three months before its insurance renewal. At the first meeting, Railinsure was confident that the cover could be extended with no increase in premium and it was asked to conduct a discreet review. Once agreements and a target level of cover and premium had been met with Optimal, Railinsure approached the supporting markets and a confidential review was presented to the decision makers. As well as achieving an increase in cover, Railinsure secured a saving of more than 20 per cent on its commercial insurance portfolio. A brief synopsis of approach An independent audit of the risks and exposures faced by the business, measured against the actual insurance programme, will provide: • an analysis of the current and potential insurable risk exposures today and in

the future plans of the business • a ‘GAP’ analysis, showing how the risk exposures match against the current programme • details of an example service plan, including areas of additional assistance – such as health and safety and risk management. Main benefits • the Railinsure process changes the emphasis from looking purely at cost and concentrates on analysing how the exposures the company faces measures against its current insurance arrangements • the insurance portfolio is tailored to the specific business needs of the business, obtaining the best value in the process • the exercise enables companies to

exploit favourable conditions without needless exposure, as there is no mass marketing of the insurance portfolio to all insurers • no contact is made with the insurance market. This avoids upsetting a longterm relationship with the existing providers and ensures the company’s insurance portfolio is not over represented in the market, resulting in a number of brokers approaching the same insurers or syndicates. When this happens, insurers are not motivated or driven to provide their best price • obtain a discreet and complimentary

second opinion from a specialist insurance broker in the sector, first based on coverage and then competitiveness • identifies potential gaps in cover, highlighting these in order of priority from statutory requirements to recommended best practice • allows the opportunity to gauge current costs against the terms Railinsure provides through the review process • maintains the relationship with the incumbent provider. This effective service is carried out in-house and, importantly, without obligation. Railinsure believes its approach will clearly demonstrate to rail professionals that it is well suited to being a long term provider of their insurance and risk management solutions.

Railinsure has negotiated sectorleading rates with XL Insurance at Lloyds of London. The main underwriter carries specific knowledge of the industry and is able to ensure that legal and contractual needs of the company are met with competitive premiums. To explore the option of a confidential review, call freephone or email Damian Hayes, quoting ‘RailPro’ North: 0808 1432420 South: 0808 1432428 Email: damian.hayes@railinsure.co.uk Visit www.railinsure.co.uk December 2014 Page 155


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Business profile

Light work of heavy loads Forecasts show that rail freight is set to double over the next three decades. Mechan is developing its lifting and handling products to create a more efficient process, enabling Foc’s to be able to cope with the demand

R

ail freight is a growth market. According to industry champions Freight on Rail, the sector has expanded by 80 per cent in the last 20 years and generates more than £1.5 billion of economic benefits for the UK. Predictions that rail freight will double again by 2043 means that it will continue to attract private investment, following the estimated £2 billion that has been ploughed into locomotives, wagons, facilities and systems since 1995. Operators are always looking for innovative ways to increase efficiency without compromising safety and, like all rolling stock, the less time freight vehicles spend in maintenance depots the greater their productivity. Mechan is one of the many UK

companies that is spearheading technological developments to reduce service times – the Sheffield manufacturer is known globally for its high quality, reliable lifting and handling products. The firm designs and builds a range of equipment to handle heavy freight loads, including lifting jacks, bogie rotators and wheelset drops. The company’s clients include international freight operators such as Freightliner, GB Railfreight and Direct Rail Services. Bespoke commissions Mechan also works with clients to bring bespoke commissions to life and its specialist engineers have worked on projects of a variety of shapes and sizes. Last year the firm secured its place in the rail industry record books after

creating and installing the largest capacity traverser in the UK, which is used to move locomotives between lines at the Port of Felixstowe’s North Rail Terminal. Felixstowe is the busiest container port in Britain, welcoming more than 4,000 ships a year. Capable of supporting loads of up to 170 tonnes, the one-ofa-kind traverser formed part of a £40 million project to boost capability by 100 per cent by connecting ten kilometres of new track. The traverser is the most advanced ever produced by Mechan and took almost 12 months to design and build. Weighing 90 tonnes and measuring 30 metres in length, it is equipped specifically to handle locomotives of the future, which are expected to be larger than today’s trains. Having never undertaken a project

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Business profile

on this scale before and with Mechan’s existing factory not having enough space, the firm had to rent another unit to accommodate it. Once built, it was transported 200 miles to the site in a specialist haulage operation, which took two days to complete. Martin Berry, Mechan engineering director, said: ‘Installation of this traverser was a real landmark occasion for the company. It was a huge undertaking not just because of its size but also in terms of the advanced technology within its design.’ Mechan trained 60 engineers at Felixstowe to operate and maintain the traverser, training that is being used on a daily basis to save shunting time and space in the terminal. Locomotives are simply uncoupled, traversed sideways and then run back to the next consignment of wagons on a different road. Raising freight maintenance standards Perhaps best known for its streamlined lifting jacks, Mechan has developed a larger version specifically for maintaining freight locomotives. Typically used in sets of four, these large jacks have much greater capacity than standard units - and are capable of lifting up to 45 tonnes. This extra power does not diminish the product’s flexibility or synchronicity and they are still operated by Mechan’s patented Megalink controller. In 2011, a major redevelopment of the control system saw the introduction of inverter technology that brings power consumption savings of up to 50 per cent, while the addition of a touch screen HMI panel provides the user with constant feedback during the maintenance process. Australasian rail operators are strong proponents of Mechan’s freight equipment. Having used a set of its heavy

jacks successfully at New Zealand’s Palmerston North facility for 12 years, Kiwi Rail commissioned four more 30 tonne units for its Hamilton depot. Mechan’s first order from Downer EDi Rail was for the heaviest bogie rotators the firm had produced. Mechan delivered the pair of ten-tonne rotators to the Australian company’s Newport depot, Victoria, for the company to maintain up to ten different types of locomotive. This broad remit required design modifications to increase lifting capacity and add extra bolt holes to the rotators. Once they reached Australia, Mechan’s engineers worked with local distributor Unique Rail to create an adapter that would enable the bespoke structures to be attached to various bogie frames. Mechan’s rotators comprise two independent structures that work together to hold a bogie frame in place while it is turned through 360 degrees for inspection and maintenance. Typically, they are manufactured to support between six and eight tonnes. However, as freight trains in Australia are larger than the UK equivalent, the capacity was increased to ten tonnes. The Taiwan Railway Administration is also the owner of two Mechan heavy lifting machines – a pair of bogie rotators and a wheelset drop – that were both installed in 2012 at its Fugang Depot, forming part of its airport link project. The rotators have a capacity of six-and-ahalf tonnes and work with an overhead crane, which is used to manoeuvre the bogie between the fixed rotator and a mobile unit. The latter is mounted

on four flanged wheels and is pushed into place by hand. From a control panel located on the fixed rotator, the operator can monitor the status of the maintenance procedure throughout and make adjustments as necessary with precision. Mechan’s wheelset drop is used to remove and replace wheelsets from the underside of freight engines without having to lift the vehicle. Located under the shop floor, removable rails with a maximum axle load of 20 tonnes straddle the pit and can be latched into place when not in operation to allow the normal passage of trains through the depot. Once the freight vehicle is in place, a scissor lift table, capable of supporting wheelsets of up to five tonnes, is traversed under the track and raised to engage with the rail beams. It is operated by a push button pendent and allows the unit to be dropped onto the table, lowered and traversed back into a side pit, where it can be removed by a crane or forklift for repair. Two hydraulic jacks and pump units support the vehicle while the wheelset is removed and four wheel chocks hold it in place on the table. Future freight demand The popularity of Mechan’s traversers and heavy-duty lifting equipment reflects a buoyant freight industry that, according to Freight on Rail, grew 9 per cent in the three months from July to September, compared with the same period in 2013. Richard Carr, Mechan’s managing director, concluded: ‘Meeting the needs of freight operators has obvious practical challenges for Mechan’s equipment. However, the company relishes the opportunity to find new technical solutions to its clients’ changing needs and looks forward to pushing the boundaries even further as the size and capacity of locomotives increases.’ For more information about Mechan’s wide range of heavy lifting and handling equipment, get in contact. Tel: 0114 2570563 Email: info@mechan.co.uk Visit www.mechan.co.uk December 2014 Page 159


Are your cables providing tasty treats for vermin?

There’s a big rat problem in the UK’s rail infrastructure and PMA have the solution! Every year millions of pounds are spent on renewing thousands of miles of vital cabling that has been damaged by rats. Not only are PMA’s polyamide cable protection systems incredibly tough with impressive thermal and chemical resistance, they are too slippery to bite and repel urine, so deterring pesky territorial chomping.

Rail’s requirements on modular wiring. So not only can PMA prevent your cables becoming tasty treats for vermin, they also protect against theft, corrosion and other expensive damage.

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To stop your rat problem getting any bigger, talk to our rail specialist today or visit our website to find the right PMA solution for you.

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PMA UK Limited, Unit 4 Imperial Court, Magellan Close, Andover SP10 5NT Tel: 01264 333527 pma-uk.info@tnb.com www.pma-uk.com


Business profile

Last line of defence Preventing embankments from collapsing saves the industry money and helps with customer satisfaction, a problem that Epicuro, with its range of environmentally-friendly solutions, could help with

E

picuro is a manufacturer of green building products that are superior in performance and environmentally safe, offering a range of protective, waterproofing and cleaning solutions. Founded by Professor Denis Chamberlain in 2006, the company’s mission is to provide the construction industry with superior performing materials that are inherently safe for those using them and the natural environment. On a recent project, Epicuro has been using its innovative

green technology to cut the number of delays caused by embankments collapsing, saving railway management teams money and easing passenger frustrations in the process. Professor Chamberlain, Epicuro technical director, has been working closely with the civil engineering department at Brunel University to develop a product that prevents repeated failures on railway embankments, while also being environmentally friendly. ‘Epicuro knows that it is important for contractors to consider their carbon

footprint when sourcing materials for maintenance work, which is why the company’s developments are so important,’ explained Chamberlain. ‘It has patented a method of RSSC (reinforced stabilised soil construction), which acts similarly to conventional reinforced concrete. It can be used for building houses, retaining walls, embankments and flood defences,’ he said. The research project is investigating which renewable materials can be used to stabilise the soil, including enzymes extracted from farm waste, marine bio-

December 2014 Page 161


Signalling the way forward

OSL RAIL

OSL Rail is a world-class railway engineering • Signalling design, Signalling Data Preparation Southampton S&C Renewals company specialising in the delivery of signalling

• SWTH, SMTH and Principles Testing

and multi-discipline remodelling projects.

We price ourselves on our highly experienced, • Overhead Line Equipment Design and Engineering Project Description competent and professional people; and our track record working clients programme to • Electrification and Power Design Engineering Southampton asof part of thecollaboratively Amey Colas with S&C our renewals is strategic in terms of the affectand on the operation of increased delivery certainty and value for money. the network. This required the project to be planned and prepared in advance ofDesign the actual renewal works. This • Civil/Structural andtrack Engineering Whilst of built on traditional values, OSL Railthe impact. The OSL advanced preparation allowed the weekend closures lead to 5 stages work on weekend to reduce embraces the latest thinking and technology. • Mechanical/Electrical Design Engineering to be successful and the track returned to service on or before time. With testing man-aged by OSL and prep-testing Our company has an established range of agile, client focused processes, tools andleft systems Environmental Design under-taken in-advance, few snags were at thethat end of each•stage. demonstrably help to minimise inefficiencies and reduce project delivery timescales and costs. • Project Management and Planning

Work Undertaken

Work Details

OSL works included the complete; signalling

Project:

Southampton S&C Renewals

and E&P works associated with Southampton

Location:

Southampton

S&C Renewals;

Customer: Amey Colas

Design, pre-fabrication of Locs and power

Brief Description:

supply cubicles, installation and testing &

The project is for replacement of 55 points

commissioning of; points, heating, power supply

ends, complete with points ma-chines, points

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heating, signalling power supplies, signalling renewal’s and power supply for points.

Schedule: April 2013 - April 2014

Endorsements on this project from Amey Colas and Network Rail For further info, please contact:

OSL Rail

OSL in 2013 have undertaken and set up a research and development division which has developed a number of products, Tel: +44(0)1793 600 793 Unit 1.3, Alexander House software systems and project to enhance operation and benefit the sectors in which we serve. Fax: +44(0)8701 236 249 management tools that look 19 Fleming Way,our Swindon Email: enquiries@osl-rail.co.uk Wiltshire Web: www.oslglobal.co.uk SN1 2NG

Page 162 December 2014

052061


Business profile

matter and animal and human waste.

‘In the case of reinforced

Significant advantages In addition to being greener, RSSC has a significant advantage over concrete because there is virtually no curing period. Following the formation of the structural element, it is finished and ready to use. Said Chamberlain: ‘In the case of reinforced concrete, a chemical bond is formed between its steel reinforcing bars and the surrounding cement paste. This allows reinforcing bars to carry their full load in tension without pulling out of the surrounding concrete. Until now, it has not been possible to achieve any such composite action in reinforced soil. Reinforcing bars are easily pulled out of soil, severely limiting its load-carrying capacity. ‘However, with Epicuro’s new patented technique, it is able to achieve a very strong composite action between

concrete, a chemical bond is formed between its steel reinforcing bars and the surrounding cement paste. This allows reinforcing bars to carry their full load in tension and without pulling out of the surrounding concrete’ soil and reinforcing bars, anchoring the bars into the surrounding soil. This effect is distributed along each reinforcing member, making it possible for RSSC to resist bending and direct tension. As a result it opens the way to a wide range

of applications, such as strengthening railway embankments.’ Underlining his enthusiasm for the technology’s potential, Chamberlain added: ‘Enzyme technology has a future in other applications, such as in the creation of a new class of thermally stable, fire-resistant materials. The company is also researching a weather resistant treatment for exposed soil surfaces. Plasters have been previously used but Epicuro has successfully adapted its fluoropolymer approach to concrete protection to meet this requirement. ‘Epicuro believes that, through its investment in research at Brunel University, it can help rail and its passengers become one of the biggest beneficiaries of these sustainable products.’ Tel: 0207 1250071 Email: info@epicuro.co.uk Visit www.epicuro.co.uk December 2014 Page 163


Vision

>

Strategy

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Execution

Your Strategy Delivered Linking Continuous Improvement to your strategy www.qualitin.com

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Morris Line Engineering

Manufacturers of High Voltage Disconnectors & Switches

Morris Line Engineering has the capacity to meet any electrical project or maintenance requirements you may have. Our business is based on satisfied customers and a reputation for high quality project support and we welcome the opportunity to discuss your project requirements in more detail. Link-up

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Morris Line Engineering, Main Avenue, Brackla Industrial Estate, Bridgend, CF31 2AG, United Kingdom Page 164 December 2014


Business profile

Risky business Culture is the key to managing risks and controlling costs. Tony Withers reflects on his 20 years’ experience in the rail industry and how organisations could benefit from an alternative approach to improving performance

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ccording to one dictionary definition, risk is: ‘The possibility of suffering harm or loss’. As Mark Carne said in November’s issue of Rail Professional, failing to manage risk hits the bottom line; there is no conflict between managing safety and quality and maintaining profitability. Following privatisation, the industry’s approach to managing risk focused on regulation and supervision, a strategy that is expensive and not always completely effective. It is the decisions that people take ‘at the coal face’ that affect results and corporate culture and management behaviours influence those decisions. Therefore, managing risk is a cultural issue. Challenging the approach Working in the rail industry made Withers aware of how frustrating and challenging a disjointed approach to managing different aspects of risk can be; compliance was a significant business cost driver. However, from any perspective, managing risk is essential in order to avoid undesirable outcomes because non-conformance always impacts client service and the bottom line. Over-regulation is expensive and ineffective and excessive documentation or conflicting regulations cause confusion where the most problems are most likely to be found. Collaborative working presents additional challenges, meaning when several contracting organisations work together on large projects the problems escalate. Different cultures and systems must be aligned and become clear, easily understood and simple to manage – processes and systems are therefore essential.

During his time working for an American organisation, Withers found the different approach to managing safety compared with the UK enlightening. It was a simple matter of economics: in the US every contracting team had output targets to meet but they all understood that they could not meet those targets if they had accidents or quality defects. Furthermore, with no NHS, employers are required to buy health insurance for their employees and insurance premiums are affected by preceding years’ claims. In other words, the link between safety and the bottom line was immediately visible and measurable. Keeping it simple A significant factor in safety performance in the US was the way in which work teams were organised. Everyone in each team worked together all of the time, meaning that everyone knew their role and what was expected. They developed work practices together and addressed and eliminated problems, looking out for each other as a team. Every Friday there would be a global review of safety performance, which was chaired by the president of the division and the head of every plant was obliged to participate. As a result of this process, the organisation was able to announce more than one million hours worked without a lost-time accident. Withers’ approach is underpinned by the TQM and EFQM Business Excellence model and both are the fundamentals of Qualitin’s methodology. Qualitin is a global enterprise that specialises in strategy execution. What differentiates it from other solution providers is its simple, practical approach to embedding TQM principles into organisational

‘Established for 18 years, and with origins in the steel processing industry, Qualitin has successfully helped organisations ranging from fewer than 10 to more than 17,000 employees in sectors that include utilities, food manufacturing, retail, not-forprofit social enterprises and charities’ cultures. It engages managers at all levels to execute strategy in a clearly demonstrable way, providing them each month with opportunities to make and be recognised for improving processes that deliver improved performance. Established for 18 years, and with origins in the steel processing industry, December 2014 Page 165


LOCOMOTIVE TRAVERSER

RAIL DEPOT LIFTING AND HANDLING EQUIPMENT Railcar Lifting Jacks Bogie/Equipment Drops Traversers Turntables Bogie Test Machines Under Car Equipment Handling Rail Depot Workshop Equipment

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Page 166 December 2014

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Business profile

Qualitin has successfully helped organisations ranging from fewer than 10 to more than 17,000 employees in sectors that include utilities, food manufacturing, retail, not-for-profit social enterprises and charities. A notable case is that of Serasa Experian in Brazil. Over a four year period Qualitin helped Serasa to grow sales by nearly 300 per cent and improve EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) by more than 400 per cent. Current UK clients include a large further education college, a legal services company and a food manufacturer. How can the rail industry benefit from Qualitin’s experience? Taking action on causes Organisations can be good at dealing with the effects of problems but not necessarily so good at addressing and fixing their causes. However, focusing on causes is absolutely essential in order to prevent reoccurrence. While root cause analysis is well embedded at operational level it is not always adopted at senior management level. Qualitin’s approach focuses on identifying and fixing causes at all levels. Focus on processes, not people American engineer, W. Edwards Deming, said: ‘A bad process will beat a good person every time’. In many organisations the blame for under performance is focused on individuals. This approach

can be demotivating and encourage the concealment of problems. By focusing on the capabilities of processes it is easier to identify and correct root causes because it provides managers with opportunities to demonstrate successes. Waste less time debating history By using results to identify improvement opportunities, rather than to apportion blame, it is possible to focus more effort on ensuring a better future. Site meetings can be made shorter and more effective and performance can be readily monitored against project and corporate objectives.

Innovation and learning from other industries is an opportunity that the rail industry is keen to address. Such innovation need not be confined to products and services - managers in many organisations around the world have achieved the kind of step change business improvements that the UK rail industry is seeking. Tony Withers is implementation director at Qualitin Global

Tel: 0115 9058581 Email: tony@qualitin.com Visit www.qualitin.com/icg

December 2014 Page 167


February and December 2010 saw two of the worst snowfall events in recent memory hit the UK. The unusually heavy snow led to disruption across vast swathes of the country, affecting every type of industry. If cold winter spells are to become more common,  Britain’s  train  operators will need to do more to make sure their routes stay open and services run despite the weather. Switchpoint Heating AB supply electrical heating systems and accessories for railways, industry applications and building sites. The company delivers complete custom-made heating systems for railway, industry and buildings including installation, details and control systems. Railway switch-point heating Railway switch-point heating is installed in order to maintain the function of the point mechanism without the need for manual clearing. The installation involves positioning flexible heating elements that can be made up to 25 meters along the foot of the stock and switch rails. In extreme cases, double elements will be installed in the section of the point

Page 168 December 2014

blade with the most movement, in order to quickly melt any snow or ice falling off passing trains as a result of vibration. The point rod pit may also be provided with heating by means of point rod heaters, which are connected up to extension terminals on the heaters positioned on the stockrail. The heating elements are covered with stainless-steel protective channels fixed to the rail using spring steel clips. The channels are supplied in lengths of 1 meter and are available in rigid and flexible designs. Clips are available in several different types fitting most rail profiles found in the switch-points that exist today. The VELOX switch-point heating system can be used with most existing control systems providing 230VAC to the point heating system. The heating elements are of a self-limiting type, which means they are energy efficient as they decrease the heat output when the temperature rises. The elements are also double-insulated and lack protective earthing in order to avoid causing signalling faults if damaged. Heaters are powered by a waterproof IP68, quickconnect system simplifying maintenance.

VELOX rail-point regulator The company also manufactures customdesigned, automatic-control cabinets containing thyristor control devices and soft-start regulators, as well as equipment for remote control and logging of energy consumption and temperature, amongst other data. The parameters of the Velox rail-point regulator can be checked and adjusted from a remote computer connected to the internet, and logged temperature and current values may, in the same way, be read or downloaded for further analyses. Communications are possible by a fixed telephone connection or a 3 /4 G modem. With cold winters seemingly becoming more frequent, Swedish company Värmekabelteknik outline their rail heating system that can keeps routes open.

FORMORE MOREINFORMATION INFORMATION FOR +46301 301418 4185050/ T.T:+46 Fax.Fax +46+46 301301 418418 70 70 E:info@vkts.se info@vkts.sewww.switchpointheating.se www.vkts.se E:


Business profile

iFreight Rail freight needs to change if it is to keep up with the growing demand. GB Railfreight explains how it is harnessing technology to improve operations and bring it into the 21st century

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t the start of 2014, GB Railfreight reached a milestone in its freight operations – surpassing £100 million annual turnover. As 2015 approaches, the company has reached another significant landmark – hauling more than 1,000 trainloads a week. GB Railfreight is incredibly proud of these achievements. The company was only set up in 1999 and is now the fastest growing freight operator on the railway. Its people and its culture The most important part of this success is the company’s people, from the frontline to head office. GBRf (GB Railfreight) was set up with some very clear ideas about what it didn’t want to be, which to some may seem an odd approach. However, it’s one that allows it to strike a good balance between its ambitions and business principles. The company prides itself on a team ethic and sense of community and has, from the start, been a business that recruits for talent and trains for skill. Many of GBRf’s employees are long-

serving members of the railway industry who exemplify how the company supports succession and development. Ultimately, the success of the company is not a product of just one employee; it’s the success of everybody. Innovation and the latest technologies As growth has accelerated, GBRf’s plans have turned to sustainability and maintaining a competitive advantage. In the past two years, the company has been working on ways to maximise the time and effort of its people and equipment in order to make everyone safer and more efficient. GBRf’s main focus has been about putting the right information in the hands of frontline staff at the right time, making sure the equipment is fit for a 21st century railway. The relationship that GBRf has with Network Rail is the perfect example of this. Over the past year, it has worked closely with the Freight Reform Programme team, investing in and deploying a host of technological applications in test and prototype formats that

target improvements in the speed and reliability of GBRf’s internal and external communications. Mobilising the workforce As part of driving forward its technology strategy, GBRf needed a channel by which to get information out to its people more efficiently and, crucially, to get goodquality feedback quickly. It evaluated its critical processes and concluded that iPads were needed to transform the business. Since 2012, GBRf has given some 350 iPads to frontline staff; the company adjudged that any cost savings made from using cheaper tablets were negated due to Network Rail’s usage of iPads and iPhones and the wide availability of developers and apps. Up until the introduction of this Apple technology, safety documentation was posted using traditional postal networks to staff, with tasks and rosters then faxed out to the recipient’s depot or home. Acting as a virtual depot, the iPads have reduced the time it takes for information to be transferred and, in the process,

December 2014 Page 169


Business profile

eliminated the need to carry around paper documentation. The devices have already had a massive impact on GBRf’s business; its people have embraced the technology quickly and have seamlessly welcomed the device into their daily routines. Transmitting and communicating safety information is a key aim for the company and it has technology already being used by other parts of the rail industry ready to be rolled-out soon. The mobile train consisting app The mobile train consisting app improves the speed of information communicated between GBRf and Network Rail on matters such as safety. Previously, employees have had to fax handwritten information to the GBRf operations centre, which then forwarded it on to Network Rail. It can now be sent direct, electronically. GBRf’s target is to reduce turnaround times and increase on-time departures, as well as get a view from inside the ports and terminals of how punctuality processes are being completed. Onboard remote condition monitoring The freight company spends a huge amount of money on locomotives that, like its people, are fundamental to delivering its customer promises. When evaluating the logistics industry, it’s almost a de facto standard that there is some remote monitoring of how the driver is progressing on the journey and how the vehicle is performing. In order to bring its locomotives into the 21st Century, GBRf has been working closely with Electro-Motive Diesel and trial fitted its remote condition monitoring system, IT (Intellitrain). The system provides real-time and historical monitoring information of the two Class 66 locomotives being used in the test. The goal is to be able to better evaluate locomotive and driver responses; fuel usage via throttle engine usage; performance faults and failures; and energy efficiency. This information can then be used to make real-time and more cost-effective operational and management decisions, improving services and reducing delays and failures on the network. Mobile data visualisation app In pursuit of driving up business performance, GBRf needed a neat and simple way to visualise information in a way that anyone could understand. The company decided to survey the logistics industry and other businesses that is used to handling lots of data, in doing so it found an off-the-shelf application that is supported by Network Rail. Through this improved communication, it can also tackle problems and developments as they arise and subsequently improve the Page 170 December 2014

company’s performance levels. A step change in performance The introduction of these applications has played a significant role in improving GBRf’s performance levels; so far this year, it has achieved 36,909 ‘miles per casualty’ – a 147 per cent improvement on the previous record of 14,898 miles. In Network Rail’s Period 10 performance report, GBRf was the most improved operator in terms of self-delay minutes for the first three-quarters of 2013/14. It achieved 75.3 per cent for its MAA (moving annual average) of the FPM (freight performance measure) metric – an increase of 3.5 per cent on the company’s original target. These markers were across both passenger and freight operators. An industry that needs to collaborate If this sort of progress is to be sustained and promoted across the industry, GBRf has affirmed the need for a model of ongoing collaboration with its customers and suppliers alike. The creation of the Rail Freight Alliance in 2013 is a sign of the collaborative direction rail freight is heading. It is tasked with addressing

strategic objectives as agreed by the RDG’s Freight Group, including delivering whole-industry cost savings and developing ‘smarter use’ of the network. The industry came together for the first time earlier this year to produce Keeping the lights on and the traffic moving: sustaining the benefits of rail freight for the UK economy, the report that assesses the benefits the rail freight industry delivers for this country. Looking forward GBRf recognises the importance of working together to improve performance and reach agreement on strategic infrastructure proposals in CP5. It will carry on looking at new opportunities for collaborative working, as well as testing the latest technologies. In this way, it intends to continue delivering the best services for its customers, encouraging a freight modal shift from road to rail and, as an industry, quietly keeping the UK economy moving. Tel: 020 7904 3393 Email: info@gbrailfreight.com Visit www.gbrailfreight.com


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December 2014 Page 171


Recruitment

Amey: Offering careerdefining opportunities After a series of high-profile wins for Amey’s Rail division, head of engineering, David Coles, has the challenge of finding the best staff to join its rapidly expanding Consulting division

C

oles thinks there’s never been a better time to shake up a career and begin a new role in the rail industry and with four-and-a-half years in his current role at the infrastructure giant – being privy to some exciting developments during that time – he’s in a good position to comment. ‘The rail market is extremely buoyant at the moment,’ he said. ‘There are unprecedented levels of investment required by Network Rail, Crossrail, HS2 and TfL in the UK, as well as rapid growth in the overseas market, particularly the Middle East. It’s a great time to be involved.’ Excellent timing The growth in the industry couldn’t come at a better time for Amey; the company has recently partnered with rail infrastructure company Rhomberg Sersa to win a multimillion pound Network Rail contract to renew S&C (switch and crossings) across two thirds of the UK rail network. ‘Amey is going to be working on a ten-year framework for S&C renewals and there’s scope for further growth by supporting future enhancement schemes as the railway system continues to expand. The whole team is enjoying this new challenge,’ said Coles. Designs are produced in the Consulting Rail division which Rail Operations division colleagues are able to implement on the ground. And of course, with big contract wins like the S&C renewals; national electrification programme; level crossing framework and the provision of professional services – all recently secured by Amey – a new challenge has been presented: finding skilled employees to fill the numerous new rail design roles that have been created. ‘Amey currently has more than 2,000 staff in its Consulting business and it plans to double that number in the next three years. The challenge is finding Page 172 December 2014

experienced engineers to help us meet that demand, and to train new talent in a very short space of time,’ explained Coles. It’s a challenge that he is looking forward to meeting: ‘The new team members can expect to work on some big projects – the type of things that define careers.’ Coles’ personal challenge is to identify what Amey’s clients need, then deliver that service ‘right first time’, as well as drive continuous improvement in everything the business delivers. That continuous improvement includes the use of innovative techniques that have never been used in the UK before. The new methods will make for a safer working environment for employees, in addition to minimising disruption to passengers and providing a more cost-effective service to Amey’s clients. Utilising efficient, sustainable and innovative working methods, and combining them with engineering excellence and network knowledge, Coles is confident that there will be more successes in the near future. Coles explained: ‘Amey is unique in combining a consultancy business with delivery that includes construction, commissioning and maintenance, and we are looking forward to achieving more for our clients.’

What can new design recruits expect? Obviously, there will be plenty of interesting project work throughout the company’s UK design offices. Said Coles: ‘New staff could potentially work in a variety of locations, and there are opportunities for overseas secondments.’ Those opportunities will increase as Amey expands its business growth in overseas markets, including the Middle East, the US and Australia. ‘There are other significant opportunities in the pipeline too, including the design and construction of HS2. The multibillion pound frameworks that Amey has recently secured will demand significant design input across all railway engineering disciplines, giving Amey designers a unique opportunity to work alongside construction colleagues to deliver buildable solutions.’ As the largest supplier of consultancy services to the UK rail market, it looks likely Amey – and the new recruits – will have its hands full on a variety of interesting and diverse engineering challenges. ‘Amey likes to be busy,’ said Coles. ‘It is an ambitious company with scope to keep doing amazing things.’


People News New MD for Caledonian Sleeper franchise Serco has appointed Peter Strachan as managing director of the franchise, which begins operating in April 2015. He joins from Serco’s business in Australia where he led two key rail bids in Sydney. Prior to joining Serco in 2013 Strachan was directorgeneral major projects for the DfT, leading on the government’s major rail and road capital projects as well as transport in London - a position he resigned from in the wake of the West Coast Main Line controversy. Strachan said: ‘As a Scot it is a real privilege to lead the transformation of our iconic Sleeper service.’ Search begins for HS2 residents’ commissioner Recruitment is now underway to find a residents’ commissioner to help those who may be eligible for government compensation and cash payment schemes. The role is to ensure that HS2 Ltd meets its commitment to the communication standards and personal support that will be enshrined in the Residents’ Charter. HS2 Ltd chairman, David Higgins said: ‘It is essential that people living close to the planned route understand what payments may be available to them. The Residents’ Charter and commissioner is our commitment to making that happen. The commissioner is independent and will make their views, findings and recommendations publically available every three months.’

Three new non-executive directors appointed to HS2 Ltd board HS2 Ltd has welcomed three new non-executive directors to its board. Christine Emmett, Neil Masom and Baroness Jo Valentine. HS2 Ltd chairman David Higgins said: ‘Delivering HS2 will be as complex as it will be significant for the country. We therefore need board members who understand the technical, financial and community issues that will confront us. Jo, Christine and Neil, working with the existing members of the board, will bring the cumulative experience we need for the massive task we face.’ Neil Masom said: ‘Coming from North West England I think High Speed Two’s arrival is a fantastic opportunity for the region.’ Christine Emmett said: ‘Having worked at British Rail and been involved with the Channel Tunnel project much of my working life has been rail-focused, so naturally I am greatly looking forward to joining HS2.’ Baroness Jo Valentine said: ‘HS2 is a hugely important and exciting project that holds out the prospect of recasting the economic geography of Britain.’

New chairman for RIA The Railway Industry Association (RIA) has appointed Gordon Wakeford, managing director of Siemens Mobility UK, as its new chairman. He takes over from David Tonkin, CEO of Atkins UK and Europe, who has completed his twoyear term. In his new role, Wakeford will lead the RIA Council, which is formed of representatives of the member companies and directs the activities of the Association. Wakeford leads the Siemens Mobility Division in the UK which comprises Siemens’ Rail Systems, Traffic Solutions, Rail Automation and Rail Electrification businesses. Prior to taking over his current role, he was managing director of Siemens Standard Drives. Said Wakeford: ‘Suppliers play a vital role in running one of the world’s most complicated railway systems. With continued growth on the horizon, the British railway industry is on the cusp of further major change and investment. There’s never been a more exciting time to be involved in the railways, with suppliers at the fore shaping the future through innovation.’

Merseyrail boss to leave in the New Year The managing director of Merseyrail, Maarten Spaargaren, will step down on January 1st 2015 after three years with the organisation. He has said he wants to consider his future career options and his children’s education either in the UK or his native Netherlands. Spaargaren’s acting successor will be Alan Chaplin, currently service delivery director and deputy managing director at Northern Rail, until a permanent appointment is made. Said Spaargaren: ‘I am immensely proud of what Merseyrail has achieved in the last three years, the highlights being our record-breaking National Passenger Survey (NPS) scores and the numerous awards we have won during this period. I want to thank all Merseyrail staff for their contribution. I have truly enjoyed working with all these great colleagues.’ December 2014 Page 173


People News New deputy chief executive joins BTPA Charlotte Vitty is the British Transport Police Authority’s new finance director and deputy chief executive. Vitty is responsible for supporting the chief executive in the general management of the Authority, as well as negotiating, collecting and managing the contributions paid by the rail industry for the service provided by the British Transport Police as well as the British Transport Police Fund. A qualified accountant, Vitty has more than 13 years experience in both private practice and the commercial market. Chair of the BTPA, Millie Banerjee, said: ‘We look forward to working with her as the Authority makes steps towards achieving its vision of a safer railway delivered by an efficient and effective force.’

Eversholt Rail appoints CFO David Stickland is the new chief financial officer, responsible for all aspects of commercial and corporate finance, tax, risk and information technology. Stickland’s previous positions include CFO of LeasePlan Corporation NV Group and before that Serco, Avis Europe, IBM and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Recruitment

Driver Managers Plan your for an exciting future Set career on the

right track

Annual salary of circa £50,000

There has never been a more exciting time join London Overground Rail Operations Ltd. (LOROL). We have a vision for an even Discover more and apply online at to www.lorol.co.uk better London Overground network and we’re working hard together to achieve it. We’re passionate about developing, expanding Closing datethe – Dec 31stconnecting 2014 communities across the capital. It’s a rewarding journey. and enhancing network,

Customer managers revenue ProteCtion managers There has never beenserviCe a more exciting time to join London Overground Rail Operations Limited (LOROL). We have a vision for an even better London£45,000 Overground network, and we’re working hard together to achieve it.Circa We’re passionate about developing, expanding and enhancing the Circa £36,000 network, connecting communities across the capital. It’s a rewarding journey.

Our Revenue Protection team are vital to the smooth and safe As a Customer Service Manager you will be at the heart of it all. of the London Overground network. With forwill thetake customer experience across your area, From responsibility May 2015, LOROL on the West Anglia Inner suburban networkoperation currently operated by Abellio Greater Anglia. With Investing twenty fourin excellent on protecting ourisincome and you’ll inspire your of management and allinfront-line employees stations, two types rolling stock, team three routes and out of Liverpool Street plus the service Romforddepends to Upminster single line this a great addition consistently meeting pledge toDepot. keep ticketless travel LOROL network. LOROL are now recruiting for Driver Managers on these routes basedour at Chingford to the deliver excellent customer service whilst supporting on time to work as low as possible. train performance within a safe environment. The ideal candidate will seek to improve levels of driver The successful candidate will You’ll oversee a need teamto: of Revenue Protection Inspectors, A proven people manager you will be highly visible across our safety and performance through planned and pro-active ensuring that they are deployed effectively and follow consistent stations, leading by example at all times particularly during competence assessments and will have a motivational • Have previous Driver Management experience and professional standards and procedures. train service disruption. Results focused, you take care approach in relation to their driver team, always striving to to • Preferably have Assessing and Coaching qualifications understand what your customers your team need solid experience in a customer-facing role, ideally improve employee engagement and and availability. Theyneed will and (A1/L12You’ll or equivalent) respond accordingly. including some element of and revenue protection or enforcement. drive improvements and contribute to the achievement of • Have excellent communication skills a strong customer satisfaction targets. customer service focus • Have a pro-active, ‘can do’ approach For both roles you will need strong leadership and coaching skills gained in a customer focused, ideally unionised, The post holders should have strong interpersonal skills • Work well in a team environment environment. Open and honest with a can-do attitude, you will share our commitment to our customers. supported by a good knowledge of train crew matters, • Be able to remain calm under pressure In return you’ll be able to make the most of great benefits including an oyster forand yourself including conditions of service, rostering practices, • Be flexible to workcard shifts weekends and a nominee, final salary pension scheme and excellent development and career opportunities. disciplinary and bargaining procedures.

Discover more and apply online at www.lorol.co.uk Closing date: 22 June 2014 LOROL is an equal opportunities employer and we welcome all applications especially from women and black, Asian and minority ethnic groups who are currently under-represented.

Page 174 December 2014


Recruitment

Help us to deliver world-class railway solutions.

Amey is one of the UK’s leading engineering consultants and public service providers, supplying the infrastructure services you use every day – from water to waste disposal, railways to airports. Alongside our railway partner Sersa, we offer innovative and collaborative engineering design, asset management and operational delivery to Network Rail, Transport for London and other rail providers. Now, because we’ve secured a number of large, long-term contracts, we need to recruit experienced engineers in the following disciplines: Civil, Geotechnical, Signalling Design, P Way Design and Electrical Design. We’re looking for motivated team-players to join our vibrant workforce, so to find out more visit amey.co.uk/careers

December 2014 Page 175


Recruitment

Opportunities at MTR Crossrail MTR Crossrail (part of MTR Corporation), is the new train operating company responsible for delivering train services on the Crossrail network on behalf of Transport for London (TfL). The railway will be opened in stages over the next 4 years to provide a world class service running on 128km of railway from Reading and Heathrow to the West of London to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the East, increasing rail based transport in the capital by 10%. Our aspiration is that MTR Crossrail will set the benchmark for passenger experience on European metro services and achieve internationally recognised high standards of safety, reliability, quality and customer service. MTR Crossrail will be fully integrated as part of the TfL network providing a fast, frequent service linking the east and west and relieving congestion on some of the busiest Tube lines. Passengers using MTR Crossrail will see reduced journey times and the new stations will be integrated with existing London Underground, DLR, London Overground and National Rail stations making it easy for passengers to change between services. We currently have a number of exciting opportunities at MTR Crossrail All posts are based in London, unless stated Short Term Planners Supporting the Planning Manager, the Short Term Planner will have the ability to do both diagramming, timings and delivering amended train plans. You will also have good problem solving skills, being able to work quickly and accurately under pressure. Disruption Manager Reporting to the Head of Planning and Performance and playing a key part within the MTR Crossrail Train Service Delivery team, the Disruption Manager is crucial to the successful development of an outstanding culture of customer service within the organisation. This is a hands-on role and the individual will be responsible for leading the production of high quality plans that facilitate the management of service disruption to minimise impact on passengers and the wider business. You will have proven experience of managing planning and resource issues gained in a real time environment, ideally rail related with a strong background of successfully working under pressure and managing conflicting priorities in a customer service environment. Duty Control Managers The Duty Control Managers will take a leading role in the operational control room, ensuring the delivery of the best possible train plan, including management of resources to customers in accordance with the MTR Crossrail Concession Agreement. You will be managing the real time performance of all operational services in a safe and efficient manner, liaising with the relevant stakeholders and ensuring the best

Page 176 December 2014

possible operation of the train service to the benefit of customers. You will also ensure the delivery of high quality, timely information to customers particularly during disruption. Duty Performance Managers The responsibility of the Duty Performance Reporting Manager is to manage the real time data and workflow processes within the Performance Management system, ensuring the production of appropriate reports to the Duty Control Manager in real time and in providing business information and follow up to incidents. You will be able to work effectively under high pressure in real time environments and be a good communicator, comfortable at dealing with requests for information from both internal and external stakeholders. Customer Experience Controllers The role of Customer Experience Controller is to ensure accurate real time train running information is communicated to stations and customers including those using help points and that the Passenger Information during Disruption policy is implemented fully during incidents. You will be able to work in high pressure, real time environments and be a good communicator, comfortable at dealing with requests for information from both internal and external stakeholders. Operations Trainers The role of Operations Trainers will involve delivering and assessing classroom and practical or on-site training, with the requirement to compile training portfolios. You will have substantial driving experience, ideally having held


Recruitment

the position of Driver Trainer / Instructor and possess the relevant training and assessing qualifications equivalent to these roles. The role will cover all aspects of driver training including use of the simulator. Operations Standards & Training Manager Developing and maintaining the elements of the safety management system (SMS) pertaining to train operation activities and the competency and fitness management of Operational staff, you will be formulating and reviewing the continuing fitness for purpose of operational safety and competence management systems relating to safety critical work activities, ensuring that they comply to the required standards. You will undertake formal and local investigations, signal sighting activities, summary assessments of competence of line managers and drivers, control staff and operational technical audit activities as required by the safety management system ensuring that all driver training is delivered effectively, timely and within budget In addition, you will fulfil operational ‘on call’ requirements at 2nd Line response level for the business at the frequency determined by the Operations Director. Concession Contract Manager As Concession Contract Manager, you will be monitoring MTR Crossrail’s compliance with its obligations under the Concession Agreement (CA) between MTR Crossrail and Transport for London. You will be a key player in the relationship with TfL, providing regular reports and information as required by the Concession Agreement. In addition you will be required to support obligation owners within the business to meet their contract requirements and to develop action plans where risks may arise. You must have a proven track record in contract management with an ability to interpret and apply legal drafting to agreements and ability to build professional working relationships with a diverse range of people. You must also have experience of successfully managing commercial issues. In return, we can offer an exciting career path and an attractive package including competitive salary, rail concessions and a final salary pension.

If you are interested in any of these roles please forward your CV and covering letter to recruitment@mtrcrossrail.co.uk by 5th January 2015, clearly stating which role you are applying for. MTR Crossrail Ltd welcomes applications from a diverse range of candidates regardless of background, disability or gender and is committed to creating a workforce as diverse as the communities we serve.

December 2014 Page 177


k any”

Recruitment

thinkers. we welcome ideas. we make happen limits. there aren’t any Frazer-Nash is a rapidly expanding systems and engineering technology consultancy with offices throughout the UK and Australia. We specialise in delivering innovative engineering solutions to our clients across the transport, power, nuclear and defence sectors. With the continued growth of our rail business, we are currently looking to recruit people at all levels of experience in a wide variety of roles in particular: Rail Systems Safety Engineer Rolling Stock Engineer Rail Systems Modelling Engineer Electrical Power Engineer Systems Engineer – Requirements & Through Life Support Our staff are rewarded with a competitive salary, generous benefits package and the opportunity to work as part of a dynamic and successful team. We always look for strong talent in our key business sectors and across all of our locations in the UK and Australia.

To find out more about Frazer-Nash please visit our website: www.fnc.co.uk

To apply for these vacancies, please forward your CV and covering letter to cv@fnc.co.uk quoting reference: RP1214 Offices: Adelaide, Bristol, Burton-on-Trent, Dorchester, Dorking, Glasgow, Gloucester, Melbourne, Plymouth, Warrington. Due to the nature of the work that Frazer-Nash undertakes we will require successful candidates to gain UK security clearance.

ENGINEERING DIRECTOR

SENIOR PROJECT MANAGER DONCASTER | £ Competitive salary and benefits package DONCASTER | £50,000 - £70,000 PLUS BENEFITS

‘An excellent professional head role in a leading T&RS business’ levels. A track record of delivery and a

Wabtec Rail in Doncaster is a leading railway

engineering company undertaking the overhaul

Wabtec Rail instock Doncaster is recognised across and repair of rolling including locomotive, the rail industry a leading rollingwith stock passenger and freight as vehicles together levels. A track record of delivery and a component and sub-assembly engineering business andrefurbishment. the largest UK commercial orientation will also be necessary business of the global Wabtec Corporation. The company employs about 1000 people and and the role will provide opportunities for the The success of the business in recent formsuse partofofinitiative. the global $2.5 billion turnoveryears is

“AThekey role in a multi-disciplinary engineering team at Doncaster provides professional leading rolling stock level support to all areas of the business ensuring that products and services meet rail safety engineering company” standards.

commercial orientation will also be necessary Candidates should be: opportunities for the and the role will provide use of initiative. • Chartered Mechanical or Electrical The Wabtec Corporation has a track record for Engineers career advancement at all levels.

Knowledgeable in rail vehicle systems and

This is components an outstanding opportunity to join Wabtec Rail in a key role and to make valuable • Proven in engineering leadership and contributions. The company has a strong management development programme that can lead to other role at Doncaster or elsewhere • opportunities Able to contribute professionally at in accordance with ambition. management team level

well known. Other Wabtec Rail oriented Wabtec Corporation. Business growth and competitive advantage The Wabtec Corporation has a track record for businesses insales the UK include the Brush Traction Annual from Doncaster are approximately are supported through product innovation career advancement at all levels. as the supply chain and third parties. and LH Group activities. are also several £100m with aroundThere 1000 employees on site. welland the development of systems and Thisgroup is an businesses outstanding that opportunity to join Wabtec of other manufacture Working with colleagues across all business processes. The role of the Engineering reports to Rail such in a key and to makeDirector valuable products as role braking systems, locomotive functions, the role will include project planning, the Managing Director and forms a key part of The role will be based at Doncaster and offers contributions. Thedata company has a and strong cooling systems, train recorders a risk analysis and mitigation, financial and Candidates liveincluding or be ablewith to relocate to • Teamshould oriented, customers parties. the company’s executive management team. opportunities to contribute significantly to the development programme that can lead to other range of electronic equipment. budgetary control, project reporting and the within and reasonable commuting distance of suppliers role opportunities at Doncaster orEngineering elsewhere in It is also the Professional Head of further development of Wabtec Rail against a business development and mentoring of project Doncaster. A reputation for high performance and quality accordance with ambition. and the Technical Head for Product Safety with background of continual improvement. ect planning, managers. The company adopts lean processes together with a commitment to business aCandidates high strong profilelive amongst theto engineering al and should or be able relocate to and policies of continual improvement and the investment has led to continual growth in recent g and the community in thecommuting UK rail industry. within reasonable distance of role provides excellent opportunities to years and a strong market position. oject Doncaster. contribute in these important areas. A Senior Project Manager is now sought to Please forward your cv and covering letter to ean processes Candidates should be graduate level engineering ensure that fleet vehicle projects are delivered to Rod Shaw at RGS Executive via RGS ment and the Please forward your cv and covering letter to enquiries@rgsexecutive.co.uk or contact project managers with strong communication skills high levels of customer satisfaction and to develop enquiries@rgsexecutive.co.uk es to Executive in Nottingham on 0115 9599687 on a confidential basis with any queriesor call him on and ability and experience in business relationship and maintain strong working relations with train 0115 959 9687 to discuss any queries that you s. Please your cv and covering letter operating andforward rolling stock leasing customers as to management sufficient to exert influence at all may have. el engineering Rod Shaw at RGS Executive via munication skills enquiries@rgsexecutive.co.uk or call him on Page 178 December ss relationship 0115 959 96872014 to discuss any queries that you ence at all may have.


Recruitment

Be Part of the First Family The world’s leading transport company, we help 2.5 billion passengers every year to get where they want to go. From our bus and train drivers to our customer service and support teams, we all work as one family to shape the future of travel and provide better journeys for life. We want everyone to enjoy the work they do and feel proud to be part of the First family. So, we look after our people every day and provide the training and knowledge we all need to deliver a great service, realise our potential and be the best we can be. Global in scale but local in approach, we aim to be the industry employer of choice and lead the way in safe, innovative, reliable, sustainable transport services. Always wanted to go further? Join us on our journey! To view all of our current opportunities across all of our UK Bus, Rail and Head Office divisions, visit our brand new careers site www.firstgroupcareers.com or contact our Group Resourcing Team on 0845 00 00 303

ELECTRICAL ENGINEER Nottingham Salary - £200 per day ATA Recruitment are proud to be recruiting for an Electrical Engineer with T&RS experience for a prestigious contract in Nottingham.

GLOBAL REACH, LOCAL DELIVERY

To review documentation associated with the delivery of the project including designs, testing, as built information, manuals, spares and training, and to advise on any risks, both safety related and commercial. Applicants should hold, or be working towards Chartered status.

SENIOR MECHANICAL ENGINEER – RAIL WWW.ATA-RECRUITMENT.CO.UK

F in d m o re jo b s at

Derby Salary - £45,000 per annum

ATA

To take responsibility for the delivery of work packages ensuring technical, quality, financial and delivery requirements are met whilst ensuring customer satisfaction. To contribute to the development of the capability and technical excellence of the Mechanical Engineering Department, and to develop effective technical relationships with existing and new customers.

DESIGN ENGINEER West Midlands Salary - £32.00 per hour An exciting opportunity to join an industry leading rolling stock enhancement and overhaul company to work on re-traction, interior refurbishment and modification projects To be responsible for the production of mechanical component and system designs for rolling stock vehicles and associated systems using CAD (SolidEdge). For further information on the above roles or to enquire about other vacancies with ATA, please contact the Rail team on 01332 861837 or email your details to paul.willerton@ata-recruitment.co.uk referencing RAILPRO + Job Title


Influencing your energy strategies with integrated solutions UK Power Networks Services is a leading provider of electrical infrastructure with significant experience of working on high profile transport projects such as High Speed 1, High Speed 2 and Crossrail. UK Power Networks Services: • Consistently delivers results on the most challenging projects • Can undertake the total requirements of any strategic infrastructure project • Has access to a wealth of international experience in providing finance solutions

Contact us by visiting: www.ukpowernetworksservices.co.uk

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Profile for Rail Professional Magazine

RAIL PROFESSIONAL DECEMBER 2014  

RAIL PROFESSIONAL DECEMBER 2014  

Profile for railpro