Freight Rail

ARA Heavy Haul Rail: Agenda set for Newcastle summit

Newcastle coal infrastructure. Photo: Southern Cross Maritime

All the big names in coal haulage and a trio of site tour options are among the highlights at next week’s Australasian Railway Association Heavy Haul Rail conference in Newcastle.

Rail Express is a proud media partner of the ARA Heavy Haul Rail event, which will take place in 2019 at Newcastle City Hall on October 29 and 30.

On day one, after a welcome and opening from ARA CEO Danny Broad, a market outlook will be provided by Commonwealth Bank of Australia Associate Director for Mining and Energy Commodities Research, Vivek Dhar.

Later, delegates will hear from speakers from the ARTC, Pacific National, Aurizon, Rio Tinto, the Port of Newcastle, before a safety-focused afternoon session with speakers from the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator and the TrackSAFE Foundation.

A workforce safety panel with representatives from Pacific National, Aurizon, Rio Tinto and Speno Rail Maintenance will round off the first day of action.

That night’s conference dinner at the Fort Scratchley Historic Site will feature guest speaker Jason Clarke, founder of Minds at Work.

The morning of day two will focus on developments in automation and artificial intelligence, with presentations from GS1 Australia, the ARTC, AECOM, 4Tel, and Wi-Tronix.

In the afternoon, three concurrent site tours will be available for delegates to choose from:

  • A site tour of Pacific National’s Greta Train Support Facility: Pacific National’s coal business transports coal from mines to ports, power stations and steelworks, 24 hours a day, seven days a week and attendees will visit Pacific National’s state-of-the-art train servicing facility at Greta, which was built to help in response to the expanding operational needs in the Hunter Valley. The Greta Facility encompasses best practice engineering and design to provide innovative solutions and systems to improve safety and operational efficiencies not yet seen in the Australian rail industry.
  • A site tour of the Port of Newcastle: With a deepwater shipping channel and berthside connections to the heavy rail network, the Port of Newcastle is the largest port on the East Coast of Australia.
  • A site tour of the John Holland Country Regional Network (CRN) Control Centre: This is a unique opportunity to gain insight into the technology used and operational procedures applied for managing Transport for NSW’s Country Regional Network (CRN). The CRN is operated and maintained under contract to Transport for NSW by John Holland Rail via its Network Control Centre in Mayfield, Newcastle. Covering 2,386 route kilometres of operational passenger and freight rail lines and 3,139 route kilometres of non-operational lines, the CRN links broad areas of regional NSW to interstate and metropolitan rail systems, supporting customers, transporting coal, grain, cotton, minerals and containerised freight to domestic and export markets.


For more information on tickets and how to book, visit the conference’s official website.