AusRAIL, Market Sectors

Rail upgrade will slash freight times, says Truss

<p>The laying of 1.35 million concrete sleepers along the Melbourne-Sydney-Brisbane rail line would cut freight times and minimise maintenance costs, federal transport minister Warren Truss said yesterday (Tuesday, April 18).</p> <p>The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has named rail manufacturers Rocla as the preferred supplier for the $100m project.</p> <p>Mr Truss said the new sleepers would handle heavier loads, be more reliable and last longer than the ones being used at the moment. </p> <p>He said the Sydney to Melbourne journey for a 1500-metre super freighter would drop from just over 13 hours, to about 10 hours and 40 minutes. </p> <p>The Sydney-Melbourne journey would drop to 11 hours 30 minutes for an 1800-metre super freighter, while the journey from Sydney to Brisbane would drop by about four hours.</p> <p>Mr Truss said rail would take a greater market share of the north-south freight task in the next 10 years as the AusLink program continued to upgrade the existing infrastructure.</p> <br />