CBH sets two grain train national records

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Grain cooperative breaks own record as it seeks new transport efficiency

CBH sets two grain train national records
CBH's record breaking grain train makes its way to Kwinana. Image courtesy Brad Harkup

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Western Australia-based grain cooperative CBH Group says it has broken national records for the delivery of the longest and largest grain train operated in Australia.

The single 1.8km train with 120 wagons and three locomotives delivered over 9,000 tonnes of wheat when it arrived at CBH’s Kwinana Grain Terminal south of Perth this week.

The movement broke CBH’s previous grain industry record of 88 wagons back in July 2016, which contained 6,500 tonnes of wheat and was 1.3km long.

The success of the 120-wagon train trial will enable CBH to drive further efficiencies and provide more options to utilise its wagons more effectively, it says, building on the experience of setting the 88-wagon record back in 2016.

CBH general manager of operations David Capper says the cooperative had used the record sized train in order to better understand how it could transport grain in the most efficient and cost effective way.

 "While operating longer and larger trains creates economies of scale, we have to balance these efficiencies against other logistics considerations including the allocation of our rolling stock resources throughout the rest of network," Capper says.

In planning for this year's trial, CBH worked in consultation with Arc Infrastructure to ensure the record train met safe operating standards.

"When we made the rail investment back in 2010-11 and partnered with our rail operator Watco, the overwhelming driver was to take control of above rail operations and deliver our growers the most efficient transport service possible," he says.

"In that first year, we were able to reduce freight rates by 7 per cent and while these reductions have continued – rail freight rates are about 20 per cent lower now than in 2010-11 – there is so much more we want to achieve."


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