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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Updates from Gross & Janes, Vossloh, Alstom and L.B. Foster


• Gross & Janes Co. has acquired a crosstie production facility in Taylor, Ark., and 4,200 acres of hardwood timber in Arkansas and Louisiana from Tucker Lumber Co. and Smith-Turner Land Co. The Taylor plant will process 400,000 ties annually, with a large portion of them to be pre-treated with borate. “The acquisition of hardwood timber gives us entry into the vertical integration of the railroad crosstie industry while also reducing our risk in the event of a shortage of timber for our mills,” said Michael Pourney, Gross & Janes’ president and chief executive officer, in a prepared statement. “At the same time, the acquisition of the Taylor facility gives us the additional capacity we need to serve our growing customer base in that area.”      

• Vossloh obtained an order for its new EUROLIGHT developed by Vossloh Rail Vehicles in Spain. British cargo hauler, Direct Rail Services (DRS), will operate 15 diesel-electric locomotives from this family of vehicles, developed by Vossloh and the client in a joint effort for the United Kingdom market, according to a Vossloh press release. The locomotives will be built at Vossloh’s plant in Valencia, Spain, and are scheduled for shipment in late 2013. Vossloh also obtained an order for six EURO 4000 locomotives from Voies Ferrées Locales et Industrielles, France’s third-largest railway operator. Both contracts are valued at about $89 million.

• Spanish railway infrastructure manager Adif has awarded a $357 million contract to an Alstom-led consortium to build and maintain for 20 years the signaling and communications systems for the high-speed line Albacete-Alicante, according to an Alstom press release. Alstom’s share of the contract is worth $140 million. The systems will feature ERTMS signaling equipment. The overall contact covers project design, installation and maintenance of the signaling and fixed communication systems, centralized traffic control, security equipment, the automatic train protection system, mobile GSM-R communications equipment and infrastructure for mobile phone operators.

• L.B. Foster Co.’s rail products plant in Pueblo, Colo., is among 10 North American manufacturing facilities that will receive IndustryWeek magazine’s 2011 Best Plant Award, L.B. Foster officials said in a prepared statement. L.B. Foster's rail joints and bars facility is being recognized for excellence in manufacturing, they said. The magazine noted that the plant demonstrates “extraordinary continuous improvement in the workplace and sustained efforts to provide customer satisfaction,” L.B. Foster officials said.

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More News from 1/12/2012