December 8, 2014--GB Railfreight and Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) today celebrated the important work undertaken on their project to construct 21 new Class 66s for the freight operator’s fleet by naming locomotive number 66753.
In proceedings at Electro-Motive Diesel Ltd.’s Doncaster Roberts Road depot, which opened one year ago, John Smith, Managing Director of GB Railfreight, and Brian Edwards, Vice President of Sales, Locomotive Service Operations & Customer Performance at Progress Rail Services Corporation & EMD, spoke about the importance of the project for what was GB Railfreight’s largest ever investment in new locomotives.
The locomotive was named “EMD Roberts Road,” in recognition of the significant investment made by EMDL in the Roberts Road depot that primarily serves GB Railfreight’s daily freight operations. The name was also meant to honour the EMDL employees at Roberts Road who play such a pivotal role keeping GB Railfreight’s fleet operating at the top of all industry measures.
The naming ceremony came on the day that the third batch of Class 66s start unloading, having arrived from the US into the Port of Newport on Saturday, December 6. The first batch arrived from the US into the Port of Newport in July 2014.
Railfreight and engineering staff were joined at the event by EMDL employees, the Chief Executive of Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council, Councillor Jo Miller, the Mayor of Doncaster, Mayor Ros Jones, and various members of the rail press, exemplifying the significance of the project for the local community, as well as the wider rail freight industry.
John Smith, Managing Director of GB Railfreight, said, “It is incredibly fitting that, on the day when the third batch of our Class 66 locomotives start their journey on UK soil, we celebrate the project with the naming of the 66753 locomotive. This has been a project of huge significance to the growth of GB Railfreight – the largest investment in locomotives in our company history – and I want to thank everyone at EMD for making the project such a success."
Scott Garman, EMDL Sales Director, added, “I am delighted to be a part of this event, celebrating the strong relationship between GBRf and EMD. It is also gratifying to know that the UK freight operating companies put their faith in the Class 66, which continues to be the most productive, economical and reliable diesel locomotive in the UK.”
# # #
GB Railfreight is one of the U.K.'s leading rail freight companies. It operates over 1,000 trains a week in the U.K. and is the main transporter of coal on the rail network and the only rail freight company with regular contracts to move biomass. For further information about GB Railfreight, please go to http://www.gbrailfreight.com.
Europorte, a subsidiary of Groupe Eurotunnel, purchased GB Railfreight in June 2010 for £26.3 million. It has operated on the Channel Tunnel route between Britain and France since its formation in 2009. For further information about Europorte, please visit http://www.europorte.com/uk/home/.
Progress Rail Services Corporation
Progress Rail Services Corporation (Progress Rail), a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc., is a leading supplier of remanufactured locomotive and railcar products and services to the railroad industry, operating one of the most extensive rail service and supply networks in North America. More than 8,000 employees serve customers in a network of more than 165 locations across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom. Progress Rail is headquartered in Albertville, Ala. For more information, visit www.progressrail.com.
Through the acquisition of Electro-Motive Diesel, Inc. (EMD), Progress Rail has expanded its network of global locations, furthering a commitment to providing industry-leading products and services. Founded in 1922, Electro-Motive Diesel is an original equipment manufacturer of diesel-electric locomotives. With offices in LaGrange, Ill., EMD designs, manufactures and sells diesel-electric locomotives for all commercial railroad applications and is a global provider of diesel engines for marine propulsion, offshore and land-based oil well drilling rigs and stationary power generation. The company is the only diesel-electric locomotive manufacturer to have produced more than 72,500 engines and has the largest installed base in both North America and worldwide. EMD also has an extensive aftermarket business offering replacement parts, maintenance solutions and a range of value-added services. For more information, visit www.progressrail.com.
For nearly 90 years, Caterpillar Inc. has been making sustainable progress possible and driving positive change on every continent. Customers turn to Caterpillar to help them develop infrastructure, energy and natural resource assets. With 2013 sales and revenues of $55.656 billion, Caterpillar is the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. The company principally operates through its three product segments - Resource Industries, Construction Industries and Energy & Transportation - and also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment. For more information, visit caterpillar.com. To connect with us on social media, visitcaterpillar.com/social-media.