XPT Replacement Discussion

 
  Showtime Chief Train Controller

I was watching a re-enactment of last years Spain HST accident on TV this week and discovered a couple of points that I thought might be worth discussing in this thread.
Something I wasn't aware of was that the Spainish train involved was a push/pull electric/diesel hybrid which normally got it's supply from the overhead but also carried large diesel generator cars at each of the train for supply when not under the wires.
When the replay was shown in slow motion, it was the diesel generator cars at both ends that derailed first and it was reported that most of the damages and injuries occurred in the back section of the train when the weight of the generator car came forward and crushed the passenger cars.
This made me wonder about the safety in accidents of diesel powered trains such as the XPT with power cars at both ends versus a conventional passenger train with just a locomotive up front.
Any views on this?

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  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I was watching a re-enactment of last years Spain HST accident on TV this week and discovered a couple of points that I thought might be worth discussing in this thread.
Something I wasn't aware of was that the Spainish train involved was a push/pull electric/diesel hybrid which normally got it's supply from the overhead but also carried large diesel generator cars at each of the train for supply when not under the wires.
When the replay was shown in slow motion, it was the diesel generator cars at both ends that derailed first and it was reported that most of the damages and injuries occurred in the back section of the train when the weight of the generator car came forward and crushed the passenger cars.
This made me wonder about the safety in accidents of diesel powered trains such as the XPT with power cars at both ends versus a conventional passenger train with just a locomotive up front.
Any views on this?
Showtime


I think you'll find the issue is with the Talgo railcar sets.  They have no discrete passenger cars as such, just an articulated tube of light weight aluminium alloy.  This design failed to get FRA approval in the USA after Washington state ordered a fleet of them for this very reason.  The XPT cars use a traditional all stainless steel design that has over the decades proved resistant to telescoping in a crash.
  M636C Minister for Railways

from the Daily Telegraph, Thursday 6 Sep
THE number of breakdowns in NSW’s ageing fleet of long-distance XPT trains has nearly tripled in four years.

XPTs broke down every 700,000km in 2008-09.
But new figures obtained under freedom of information show the trains’ engines are now packing it in every 250,000km.
Documents showed the fleet of 19 engines and 60 carriages have recurring problems with brakes and engines.
RailCorp’s Rolling Stock Annual Asset Integrity report 2012-2013 said the performance of the diesel fleet, including the XPTs, had “been declining during 2012-13”.
The report said the XPT fleet was at risk from “bogie (wheels) fatigue issues” and corrosion of electric ducting in the diesel-electric engines.

The report said the rail cars, some of which first went into service in 1982, have travelled an average of 9.945 million kilometres — the equivalent of nearly 13 times to the moon and back.
They were designed to travel 7.5 million kilometres before being retired.
Transport minister Gladys Berejiklian told a Budget Estimates hearing the government was concentrating on replacing rolling stock for the suburban network.
“The next thing for us to look at are XPTs,’’ she said.


She was unable to give a date when a decision on replacing the XPT will be made.
Sydney Trains CEO Howard Collins told the committee there was a “huge backlog of work to be done here”.
  Aurora8 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney
Yep, truth of the matter is they've committed to the Waratahs and now the off-the-shelf Intercity trains.

NSW TrainLink has to make do for now with what they've got.
  MD Chief Commissioner

Location: Canbera
Wernt all the XPTs , given new engines in 2002 ?
Thats only 12 years old, and so they shoudnt be breaking down.

And what does this statement mean.

Sydney Trains CEO Howard Collins told the committee there was a “huge backlog of work to be done here”.

What does XPTs or rail cars have to do with Sydney Trains?
Its NSW Trains that runs them , and NSW Trains CEO is Rob Mason.
Seems like a muddled report.
  Aurora8 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney
And what does this statement mean.

Sydney Trains CEO Howard Collins told the committee there was a “huge backlog of work to be done here”.

What does XPTs or rail cars have to do with Sydney Trains?
Its NSW Trains that runs them , and NSW Trains CEO is Rob Mason.
Seems like a muddled report.
"MD"

These kind of large scale purchases are made by the Government.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
One breakdown every 250,000km, That's nearly 9mth operation for the average set or once every 5-6 weeks for the fleet. I would have thought not too bad.
  johnboy Chief Commissioner

Location: Up the road from Gulgong
And what does this statement mean.

Sydney Trains CEO Howard Collins told the committee there was a “huge backlog of work to be done here”.

What does XPTs or rail cars have to do with Sydney Trains?
Its NSW Trains that runs them , and NSW Trains CEO is Rob Mason.
Seems like a muddled report.
MD

"Transport minister Gladys Berejiklian told a Budget Estimates hearing the government was concentrating on replacing rolling stock for the suburban network."


Hence all the CEOs would involved in the process. I would say the terrograph wrote this part poorly. Howard Collins would be commenting that ALL train procurement has a lot of work to do, not just XPT replacement.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

One breakdown every 250,000km, That's nearly 9mth operation for the average set or once every 5-6 weeks for the fleet. I would have thought not too bad.
RTT_Rules


I think you'll find that's a failure every 13-14 days.  250k km/ 1000 km per day / 18 engines = 13.9 days.

Regardless, it's to be expected in a fleet of this age.  Just because a train can continue beyond it's planned service life, it doesn't mean it is truly saving money to do so.
  M636C Minister for Railways

Wernt all the XPTs , given new engines in 2002 ?
Thats only 12 years old, and so they shoudnt be breaking down.
MD

The DT refers to the power cars as "engines".

There are a lot of non diesel parts in the power cars to fail: corrosion of power cable ducting (won't help) and bogie fatigue failures are both mentioned. And the non diesel engine parts are up to 34 years old. I inspected the first re-engined power car at Broadmeadow when it was just converted and it needed a new radiator before it could be operated...

M636C
  Junction box Chief Commissioner

Location: newy
Nothing wrong with Victoria's sprints either.
  johnboy Chief Commissioner

Location: Up the road from Gulgong
Nothing wrong with Victoria's sprints either.
Junction box

I assume you mean old "Sprinters"... nothing wrong if you want a 20 year old box, that struggles to reach 130km/h.

Vline Velocity would be more appropriate replacement than a Sprinter.

I am sure the NSW Government will make an appropriate replacement decision for the XPT at the right price (cough)
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
I think you'll find that's a failure every 13-14 days. 250k km/ 1000 km per day / 18 engines = 13.9 days.

Regardless, it's to be expected in a fleet of this age. Just because a train can continue beyond it's planned service life, it doesn't mean it is truly saving money to do so.
djf01

True.

The old argument between CAPEX and OPEX, I will think people will find this exists in the private sector as well, probably more so.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
I assume you mean old "Sprinters"... nothing wrong if you want a 20 year old box, that struggles to reach 130km/h.

Vline Velocity would be more appropriate replacement than a Sprinter.

I am sure the NSW Government will make an appropriate replacement decision for the XPT at the right price (cough)
johnboy

Tend to agree, the replacement of the XPT will something that enables a single fleet for both the XPL and XPT routes.

Probably along the lines of XPT replacement order, which if done 1:1 will take I would imagine 2-3 years to complete and then once operating in a satisfactory manner following with a XPL replacement order a couple years later.

XPT's to be sold to the highest bidder, XPL's to be converted to Endeavors or retired/spare parts.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

The only "trains" that will replace XPTs & Xplorers will be those "one carriage" "self-propelled" diesel-engine ones that have rubber tyres, and run on those "bitumen tracks".

Liberals do not like to support trains (only when it helps their political cause), as they are more for the motorists, especially how they are very close to oil companies.

If the Libs had their way, their would be no country trains, including about half the interurban train trip lengths.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

XPT's to be sold to the highest bidder, XPL's to be converted to Endeavors or retired/spare parts.
RTT_Rules


And that highest bidder would be Sims Metal.

If anything, I think it's more likely some Endeavours will be converted - or partially converted - to Xplorers

When the Newcastle line is truncated I expect there will be a complete collapse in patronage on the Maitland line.  The existing Hunter Rail car fleet will be able to handle that, and then some (ie Bombadary as well).

Also, it's hard to see rail services north of Grafton continue with the current timetable.

This will potentially leave Rob Mason with an unusable fleet of XPTs and excess old but still serviceable 2 car DMUs.  

Dubbo has been demanding a twice a day service for yonks now.  So perhaps 2 x 2car DMUs (2 x crew of 2) a day vs 1 x 4 car XPT (with a crew of 6) would be cheaper and provide a "better" service.

Similarly Canberra could be "endeavourised": replace all those station staff at Canberra with an Opal reader, and the buffet with a vending robot.

That'd free up the larger DMUs for the north coast and Melbourne runs.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

If the Libs had their way, their would be no country trains, including about half the interurban train trip lengths.
Newcastle Express

Absolutely right.  Not *quite* the same sentiment in the National party though.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
The only "trains" that will replace XPTs & Xplorers will be those "one carriage" "self-propelled" diesel-engine ones that have rubber tyres, and run on those "bitumen tracks".

Liberals do not like to support trains (only when it helps their political cause), as they are more for the motorists, especially how they are very close to oil companies.

If the Libs had their way, their would be no country trains, including about half the interurban train trip lengths.
Newcastle Express

Yes Yes we have heard all this before, no more trains, only buses and the political stereotyping is out of alignment of reality considering who ordered the current fleet in the first place as a starter.
  Junction box Chief Commissioner

Location: newy
Yes I meant Velocity.
  boromisa Junior Train Controller

Yes Yes we have heard all this before, no more trains, only buses and the political stereotyping is out of alignment of reality considering who ordered the current fleet in the first place as a starter.

Well Nick Greiner was the Dr Beeching of NSW. Coalition record on railways is well documented.


If they did replace them I would prefer RailJets that are used by OBB and CD currently. Really nice trains although seating in second class would need to be improved!
  boromisa Junior Train Controller

GENERAL PURPOSE STANDING COMMITTEE NO. 3

Tuesday 19 August 2014

Examination of proposed expenditure for the portfolio areas


TRANSPORT, THE HUNTER




The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: Don't worry, I will be tomorrow. Mr Mason is not here today but I am going to ask the question in relation to where we are up to in relation to XPT replacement?

Ms GLADYS BEREJIKLIAN: There is no doubt that we are moving through a process of looking at all our rolling stock. I am pleased that the Waratahs on the suburban network are now completely rolled out. I am pleased that we are procuring the intercity fleet—

The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: I am asking about the XPTs, Minister, as I have at every budget estimates.

Ms GLADYS BEREJIKLIAN: I am getting to that. We have commenced a procurement process for the intercity fleet.
The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: I am aware of that.

Ms GLADYS BEREJIKLIAN: The next thing for us to look at is XPTs. That is why we established NSW Trains as a separate entity, to look at our country and regional intercity passengers. Obviously that did not occur previously. It is something this Government is looking at. We have not made any announcement in regard to that but I can certainly say—

The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: Can you provide to the Committee a time frame in relation to an announcement around the XPT intercity fleet?

Ms GLADYS BEREJIKLIAN: No, I cannot.

The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: Mr Stewart, are you able to?

Mr STEWART: We are continually working on our regional rolling stock strategy, when we have finished that detailed work we will make that available.

The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: Previously there have been significant reports provided—

Ms GLADYS BEREJIKLIAN: Which your Government failed to implement.

The Hon. PENNY SHARPE: —in relation to the need to replace the XPT fleet. It is not unreasonable that I ask what the time frame is. It is incredibly important in terms of regional travel within the State. I am sure the Minister would say she cares about that deeply, but I am concerned that three years into the Government's term we are yet to get any information around the replacement or upgrade or dealing with the XPT fleet. I am looking for a time frame.

Mr COLLINS: There is such a huge backlog of work to be done here. There are trains which when I arrived had been running around for 30 or 40 years. I appreciate your concern about XPTs. We focused on completing the Waratah rollout, which has gone extremely well. We have focused on the intercity fleet which has moved forward and certainly the plan to deal with the next priority, which has to be the XPTs—

http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/committee.nsf/0/93D067C2A16ECF22CA257D3900293DDF

It would appear that they are not in hurry to replace them.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Well Nick Greiner was the Dr Beeching of NSW. Coalition record on railways is well documented.


If they did replace them I would prefer RailJets that are used by OBB and CD currently. Really nice trains although seating in second class would need to be improved!
boromisa

And what would that be, or just a generalized statement with no facts.

But yes it was and I was a Gosford commuter through that period. Griener walked into a budget in tatters (books were not so open back then so govts could basically lie alot easier) and in 1986 dollars a $40B (I think) black hole with the SRA burning through $3m/day and losing freight and pax numbers.

They ordered the EXPLR fleet to replace the aging loco hauled sets and reintroduced the Moree/Armidale service.

Numerous rural branch lines were closed, many of these carried little or no freight and despite the ALP taking govt about 8 years later when the infrastructure was still "recoverable" condition. Two lines were reopened but failed to remain viable. The Toronto line was closed, this surprised me at the time but its rarely be well defended that it should open in RP in the many years since and again ALP failed to reopen. Many lines were quoted as hauling more sleepers than freight. But yes often in large scale closures mistakes are made and the Dombarton line turned out it was better to have finished as no money was saved. Continued to keep open railway lines that carry little or no freight is a waste of taxpayers.

I used to go to Syd TAFE and walked along Sydney terminal 3 nights a week at different times in the lead up to the regional train cut backs, the axed train lengths were often minimal in length and by the terminus carried few to no passengers in some cases.

One rural service that I think was a mistake was the Coomera night train. I think this train had a future for the ski season only, but the argument is that its a long branch for an average of a few trains a week and I would do something different with the Dubbo/Broken Hill trains, but that is now, not then.

Now do we want to go through ALP's history
- Closed Mull'bah XPT
- Cut the Nth Tablelands back from Tenterfield. I can even remember the newspapers on that on. Barry stating he wasn't running a $10m train for an old lady.
- Repeated "gona's for the NW rail something and blew $400m in the process
- Got approved a line to E-P that was later determined to be questionable.
- Continued to run the Cityrail network into the ground such that they started to loose passengers enmass, later resolved with slowing the timetables, cuts in services and the untangling project
- Oversaw the continued cut in regional non bulk freight and loss of diesel traffic
- Maintained manual signally on the southern line rather than convert to CTC due to unions
- Failed to maintain the regional freight network in general and delayed the hand over of the interstate so to leach more money, they had to pay a fee to the feds to make up for lack of MTCE.
- Menangle Bridge and Wagga Wagga bridges, need we go further...
- Yes they did some good stuff.
  boromisa Junior Train Controller


- Maintained manual signally on the southern line rather than convert to CTC due to unions
RTT_Rules

Classic one out of the Liberal party handbook: If in doubt blame unions. Well done.

Now here's one of you:

http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/nsw/neville-wran-through-the-years-20140420-36z1w.html?selectedImage=12

Image no 14.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Classic one out of the Liberal party handbook: If in doubt blame unions. Well done.

Now here's one of you:

http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/nsw/neville-wran-through-the-years-20140420-36z1w.html?selectedImage=12

Image no 14.
boromisa

I actually first read about this in Railpage. So no, its not from LNP.

Not sure what your link to Wran has to do with it all.
  johnboy Chief Commissioner

Location: Up the road from Gulgong
A photo of Neville Wran?
Whilst his government commissioned the XPT, he was also the father of closing country lines as well.
The difference between ALP and Coalition on railways in NSW is pretty mixed, some did this, some did that, comparing them is rather petty.

Gladys has her priorities... and XPT is not there at the moment.
The votes are closer to Sydney and focusing on Sydney transport may break this government. They know they can get another election or two out of XPTs.
Focus on the big money projects first, which I assume will include the V Set replacement.

XPTs will be here for a while yet

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