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Rail News: Short Lines & Regionals

Short Lines: OmniTRAX affiliate acquires Sand Springs Railway; Koile assumes sales role at Nebraska Central


OmniTRAX Inc. yesterday announced its Sand Springs Holdings L.L.C. affiliate has acquired the Sand Springs Railway Co., which operates 32 miles of track between Sand Springs and Tulsa, Okla.

The Sand Springs Railway is expected to commence operations no later than July 31. Terms of the deal — OmniTRAX's first venture in Oklahoma — weren't disclosed.

The Sand Springs Railway has direct connections with BNSF Railway Co., Union Pacific Railroad and the South Kansas Oklahoma Railroad. The short line moves steel, pulpboard, scrap iron, scrap paper, petroleum products, plastics and lumber for such customers as Yaffe Metals, Baker Petrolite, Webco Industries and Ranger Steel.

"We are excited to be in Oklahoma and involved with a market that shows such great potential for growth. The Sand Springs Railway has a great customer base and we are committed to providing the resources to quickly act on new opportunities there," said OmniTRAX Chief Executive Officer Kevin Shuba in a press release.

As part of the deal, OmniTRAX Logistics Services will lease 100,000 square feet of covered warehouse space featuring heavy lift equipment to serve steel and building products shippers throughout the greater Tulsa area and in wider Oklahoma markets.

Meanwhile, the Nebraska Central Railroad (NCR) has named Michael Koile director of marketing and sales.

A fourth-generation railroader with more than 30 years of experience, he has served in various marketing and management positions for BNSF, Kansas City Southern and, most recently, Genesee and Wyoming Inc.

Owned by Rio Grande Pacific Corp., NCR operates 340 miles of track in the central portion of Nebraska from Columbus to Grand Island.