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Harsco Rail finds railroad to Mecca (and South Africa, too)

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
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Harsco Rail, Harsco Corp.’s railway track maintenance division, has landed two equipment orders, one in Saudi Arabia, one in South Africa, worth close to $25 million.

The Saudi Arabia order calls for Harsco Rail’s precision rail grinding equipment for use on the double-track, 281-mile high-speed line being built between Mecca and Medina. “The Harsco-built machines will be used to maintain railhead contours for extended rail life and smoother operation, thus reducing fuel consumption, operating costs and noise,” Harsco said, adding, “Grinding also corrects possible surface damage that can potentially lead to rail fractures.” Harsco’s order also includes initial operator training as well as spare parts support.

When completed, the high-speed railroad to Mecca is projected to carry up to 166,000 passengers per day.

Under the second order, Harsco Rail will provide two on-track measuring vehicles for the assessment of rail geometry and ballast profiling in the Republic of South Africa, working as an OEM (original equipment manufacturing) partner supporting Transnet Freight Rail, the country’s heavy-haul freight railway system. Harsco will be supplying the equipment to Transnet contractor Molamu Majories and Thari Joint Venture (MMTR).

Deliveries under both orders are expected to be completed by the end of 2017.




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