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California's North County Transit District awards $50 million DMU contract to Siemens

North County Transit District (NCTD) recently awarded a $50 million contract to Siemens Transportation Systems to supply 12 Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) light-rail vehicles — the largest procurement contract ever awarded by the agency.

A cross between heavy-rail and electrically propelled light-rail vehicles, the aerodynamic "Desiro" model DMUs will be used on the district’s soon-to-be-constructed 22-mile SPRINTER line between Oceanside and Escondido. NCTD is rehabilitating a lightly used freight branch line for the SPRINTER service.

The agency recently was granted a waiver from the Federal Railroad Administration, enabling NCTD to run the low-emission DMUs on heavy rail lines during specific times, according to a prepared statement.

The vehicles are scheduled for delivery in 2006.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 3/12/2004