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8/12/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Watco Cos. develops small switching locomotive


Watco Cos. Inc. Baytown, Texas, locomotive shop recently developed a 600-horsepower SW 2 locomotive designed for small switching operations (up to 25 cars), according to a news item in the short-line holding company's monthly newsletter released Aug. 9.


The SW 2, which includes a four-cycle Cummins engine that can be started and shut down similar to a truck engine, requires less maintenance and fuel compared with similar locomotives, and uses one-tenth as much oil, said Don Wilson, Watco's general manager of mechanical services/Baytown.


Watco recently sold one SW 2 to Equistar in Bayport, Texas, which produces chemicals, polymers, and wire and cable resins and compounds.


The company currently is building its second SW 2 for steel producer AmeriSteel Corp. in Jacksonville, Fla.


Watco owns and operates eight short lines in nine states, and offers mechanical, switching, leasing, warehousing and property-management services.


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