Hyslop Rural Transport are regulars at Ravensdown Dunedin and when Craig Andrews caught up with Doug Maskill at midday on a Friday recently he was in picking up his second load of super for the bulk store in Outram. Doug had already got a load of lime in for the morning from Milburn and dispatched it up to Clarkes Junction.
KiwiRail has announced it will improve its reliability and efficiency for customers by employing an all-diesel fleet on the North Island Main Trunk line. KiwiRail chief executive Peter Reidy says the small fleet of almost 30-year- old electric trains that currently operate only between Hamilton and Palmerston North will be phased out over the next two years and replaced with diesel locomotives. The decision allows for the electric infrastructure on the line to remain in place and be maintained to a safe standard for any future use. The North Island Main Trunk (NIMT) runs from Auckland to Wellington but is electrified only between Hamilton and Palmerston North. Reidy says KiwiRail is essentially running ‘a railway within a railway’ by having the electric section. “Imagine having to change planes at Hamilton and again at Palmerston North, just to fly from Auckland to Wellington. That’s not efficient, it’s more costly and ultimately delivers a less reliable service,” he says. “The doubling up of service facilities, inventory, training and maintenance required with two separate systems on the line adds to the inefficiencies and unreliability.”
The future of autonomous driving is ‘made-in- Europe’. The European Agency for global navigation satellite systems (GSA) has launched ESCAPE, a three-year and 5.4 M€ project to develop a new positioning device integrating the latest technologies for automated driving. The project will exploit the services offered by the new European navigation satellite system, Galileo: high precision, high availability and maximum reliability.
An Order in Council signed 20 December will accelerate the reinstatement of State Highway 1 north of Kaikoura, ensuring work to restore the coastal road and rail route can progress in a timely fashion. Transport Minister Simon Bridges said the government was focused on reconnecting the communities of Kaikoura and the region as quickly as possible.