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December 22, 2016   |   Radio New Zealand


Diesel engines will help environment, KiwiRail says

KiwiRail says going all diesel would make the company more efficient, better able to take freight than trucks, and so was better for the environment. At present, the rail company has to use diesel locomotives in Wellington, switch to electric units in Palmerston North, then back to diesel in Hamilton, because work in the 1980s to electrify the tracks was never completed.

KiwiRail chief executive Peter Reidy said that was inefficient and, as well, the 16 electric trains were breaking down almost twice as often as the company average. They would be replaced with eight diesel locomotives, making it a standard diesel fleet across the North Island main trunk line.

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