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RAIL EMPLOYMENT & NOTICES



Rail News Home Rail Industry Trends

11/24/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Updates from Miner Enterprises, Parvus, Knorr-Bremse, Faiveley Transport, ArcelorMittal Steelton, FreightCar America and Visionaire


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• Miner Enterprises Inc. obtained a contract from Canadian National Railway Co. to provide Miner Ore Car Mechanisms for 232 new National Steel Car-built ore cars and upgrade draft gears on 500 existing ore cars. Miner will provide its customized pneumatic longitudinal door mechanism and Miner TP-17 draft gears. The new air-powered Miner Ore Car Mechanisms will automate and enhance the cars’ unloading capability, Miner said. The TP-17 draft gear features the company's TecsPak® elastomer shock-absorption technology.

• Parvus Corp. won a $1.6 million order from Kawasaki Rail Car Inc. for 150 DuraMAR® 1000 routers to be installed on new M-8 passenger cars Kawasaki is building for MTA Metro-North Railroad. The Cisco 3200-based mobile routers will be specified into the cars’ next-generation Internet Protocol-based computer network infrastructure. Deliveries will begin next year.

• Rail braking system manufacturer Knorr-Bremse and Japanese signal equipment supplier Kyosan Electric Manufacturing Co. Ltd. signed an exclusive co-operation agreement under which Knorr-Bremse will sell its Westinghouse Platform Screen Door (WPSD) systems in Japan through Kyosan. In addition, Knorr-Bremse will market and sell certain Kyosan rail products and systems — including a new gap filler — under the WPSD brand to the global market outside Japan.

• Faiveley Transport obtained an order from French railway SNCF to supply two-stage compressed air production and treatment units for the TGV PSE train upgrade program. Aimed at extending the life of TGV PSE units, the program calls for increasing the trains' pnuematic power. The oil-free compressed air production unit is designed to withstand demanding operating conditions and startup in low temperatures. Under the contract, Faiveley will provide 155 air production units (two for each train). The contract also contains an option for 70 more units. SNCF plans to begin testing the upgraded trains in June 2009.

• ArcelorMittal Steelton has received ISO 9001 quality certification. The company, which produces rails, specialty blooms and flat bars for the railroad and forging industries, is one of three rail suppliers in the United States. To receive the certification, ArcelorMittal Steelton implemented a quality management system evaluated by independent auditors and customers, who examined system documentation, records, the firm’s calibration system, training and overall quality management.

• FreightCar America Inc. announced a recent class action suit settlement involving the closing of its Johnstown, Pa., plant has received court approval. Because the facility’s labor costs were significantly higher than other facilities and the rail-car industry was in a downturn, FreightCar America last year attempted to reach an agreement with a local union on a reducing labor costs. Those efforts weren’t successful, so the company decided in December 2007 to close the facility, which prompted the class action suit by the plant’s workers.

• Visionaire Inc. has consolidated its operations, warehouse and assembly units into one larger facility in the Great Southwest Industrial District in Grand Prairie, Texas. The facility features three times more available floor space and is designed to make better use of “lean manufacturing” principles. Visionaire produces air conditioning, heating and pressurization systems for off-highway equipment cabs, including a/c systems for railroad maintenance-of-way equipment.