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Transporting by train – part two

World Cement,

Thinking of the environment

As well as commercial benefits, the use of Bow East depot will have a positive impact on the environment. Increasing the use and size of freight trains on the railway network reduces the need for additional train services and transportation by road. As rail produces almost 90% less PM10 and up to fifteen times less NOX emissions than HGVs, this has significant environmental benefits.

“Obviously the more material that can be transported on each train the less impact that the journey will have on the environment” Mick said. “Coupled with the other environmental benefits of using rail freight this makes Bow East a sustainable solution for transportation.

“At the moment Bow East is only handling loose materials. Planning applications have been submitted for the erection of processing plants with our customers keen to invest in new concrete, block and asphalt production facilities at the depot. We look forward to seeing the construction phase and are sure that the development will be part of a new and better way of working.”

Case study – intermodal solution

The following case study demonstrates how specifically tailored solutions can also be provided for non-rail connected facilities.

David Fletcher, Head of Construction Sales at DB Cargo UK, said: “Working with a customer, we identified an opportunity to transport Pulverised Fuel Ash (PFA) from North Yorkshire by rail to a plant in Berkshire without a rail siding. This had formerly been moved entirely by road.

“PFA is a waste product of coal combustion and is used in the production of light weight building blocks.

“We developed and implemented a door to door supply chain solution to transport the PFA. Rail is used for the majority of the journey with the final part completed by road, in specifically designed containers that are intermodal, meaning they can be transferred from rail wagons to trucks using a reach stacker.

“These can be loaded with 28 t of PFA in a matter of minutes. Once loaded, our rail service takes them from North Yorkshire to Appleford in Oxfordshire, where they are then transferred to the trucks for the final stage of delivery to Berkshire.

“Three rail services per week currently run and from March 2016 each train will convey the equivalent of 44 lorry movements. The intermodal solution that we created allows the raw material to be transported predominantly by rail and then by road for the final leg without intermediate storage, reducing handling and costs.

“Our customer has also significantly reduced its carbon footprint by around 1700 t of CO2 each year, which was one of the core aims when we jointly developed the solution,” David said.

Case Study – Jumbo trains

Rail capacity is maximised by a solution used by DB Cargo UK to transport materials from two quarries in Somerset to London and the South East.

“To meet the needs of the customer we use jumbo trains,” said David Fletcher.

“These weigh approximately 4400 t and carry up to 3300 t of aggregate.”

“A Class 59 diesel locomotive is used to haul each of these jumbo trains. They are very reliable locomotives and 14 of them have been dedicated to the traffic, highlighting the huge amount of material we are able to move on behalf of our customer.

“The jumbo trains travel from Somerset to Acton in London where they are split into two or three portions. These portions are then moved by other locomotives, each serving a different concrete or asphalt plant.

“Using the jumbo trains makes very efficient use of the rail paths on the busy routes that serve the West Country, South Wales, the Thames Valley and Heathrow.

“The project supports DB Cargo UK’s ethos to provide excellent solutions for our customers and reduce the impact of our operations on the environment – as fewer journeys and locomotives are required to move the product.

“We thrive on finding logistical solutions to the challenges that our customers may face and the experience and expertise of our teams based across the UK means that we have provided some of the most effective solutions on the market.”

This is part two of a three-part article written for World Cement’s April issue and abridged for the website. Subscribers can read the full issue by signing in, and can also catch up on-the-go via our new app for Apple and Android. Non-subscribers can access a preview of the April 2016 issue here.

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