Etihad Rail’s wagons reach Mina Zayed

The UAE’s rail dreams got wings this week with the first shipment of Etihad Rail’s wagons , to be used in Stage One of the Etihad rail project, reaching Abu Dhabi’s Mina Zayed port.

Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the national railway network, announced on Wednesday that the wagons reached the port aboard King Spirit and senior delegates from Etihad Rail were on hand to receive and inspect the wagons.

Dr Nasser Saif Al Mansoori, CEO of Etihad Rail, said the timely arrival of the wagons is yet another indicator of the rapid progress being made on the project.

“Construction activity for the first stage of the rail project, which is being developed in partnership with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc), is far along and we are on track to see the first trains run from Habshan to Ruwais within a year using these wagons. Etihad Rail’s wagons were carefully manufactured and designed based on several studies and research efforts conducted in collaboration with different suppliers, leading us to adopt some of the most advanced rail technologies available in the world.

The rail project will change the face of transportation in the UAE, playing a significant role in building a sustainable economy by promoting growth in various business sectors, providing jobs for the local workforce, and contributing to environmental preservation, since one fully loaded train produces 70-80 per cent less CO2 emissions than that of the trucks required to transport the same tonnage.”

Etihad Rail contracted China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock Corporation Limited (CSR) last year to supply 240 covered wagons for the transport of granulated sulphur in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi. Etihad Rail has also contracted US-based Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD), one of the world’s largest builders of diesel-electric locomotives, to design and manufacture seven heavy haul freight locomotives.

The wagons were designed with the highest available safety standards to accommodate the core purpose of Stage One, the transport of granulated sulphur. For example, the wagons’ top-hatch covers for loading maintain the purity of the sulphur at 99.9%. Furthermore, train transport allows for a capacity of up to 22,000 tonnes of sulphur per day. It would take 360 trucks to transport the equivalent tonnage.

Other equipment necessary for the construction of Stage One, including one locomotive will be arriving at the Mina Zayed port in 2013.

The recently inaugurated Khalifa Port will be linked to Etihad Rail’s network during Stage Two of the construction process. Linking Abu Dhabi’s ports with the Etihad Rail network will create a multi-modal transportation system that will contribute to Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030.

Construction on the 264km route for Stage One, which links Shah and Habshan to Ruwais, is well under way. The tendering process is already in progress for Stage Two, which will connect the railway to Mussafah Port, Khalifa Port and Jebel Ali Port and further to the Saudi and Omani borders, spanning 628km.

Stage Three, at 279km, will connect the rest of the Northern Emirates and will inaugurate Etihad Rail’s passenger service. Upon completion, the Etihad Rail network, which will cater to both freight and passengers, will extend approximately 1,200km across the UAE. The network will also form a vital part of the GCC Railway Network, linking the UAE to Saudi Arabia via Ghuweifat in the west and Oman via Al Ain in the east.


Source : khaleejtimes

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