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The Plasser Vacuum Scraper-Excavator, VM170, is designed for the efficient and economical removal of various types of material from railway track. The machine is especially useful in areas where obstacles may prevent full utilization of other methods of material removal. The VM170 quickly and efficiently removes ballast from track, switches and crossings with awkward access, such as around station platforms, road crossings, bridge approaches, interlockings and the like. The machine is also capable of creating drainage ditches and excavations for cables, poles and foundations. The extendable, slewable waste discharge conveyor is designed to allow waste material to be discharged to either side onto the right-of-way, into Plasser MFS type material handling cars or into open top railway cars.