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The West Australian --> Co-operative Bulk Handling grain train arrival in Kwinana, Perth, sets record with 9000 tonnes

--- Quote ---We all know what it's like to be held up at a train crossing when you’re late, but imagine what it’s like to be stuck when this train arrives.

This Co-operative Bulk Handling grain train from the Wheatbelt pulled into Kwinana yesterday, carrying a record-breaking 9000 tonnes of wheat.

It had 120 wagons and was 1.8 kilometres kilometres long.

That’s the same as 11 football fields.

It’s the longest and largest grain train operated in Australia.
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Brisbanetimes --> Regulator's tick for autonomous trains goes to Rio

--- Quote ---The rise of machines that have been described as “the world’s largest and longest robots” - trains used to carry iron ore in the Pilbara - has stepped up a gear, with Rio Tinto getting approval for its autonomous trains from the rail safety regulator.

Rio made the announcement on Friday, adding that its $US940 million AutoHaul project was on track to be completed by the end of this calendar year.

“Rio Tinto will take a phased approach to deploying autonomous trains across the network in the lead-up to full commissioning. Once commissioned, the network will be the world’s first heavy haul, long distance autonomous rail operation, unlocking significant safety and productivity benefits for the business,” Rio Tinto said in a statement to the ASX.

The vast trains consist of two or three powerful locomotives, along with 240 ore cars. When loaded each car holds about 118 tonnes of ore, meaning that a single train can transport about 28,320 tonnes of ore from mine to port.

A small-scale ramp-up of Rio’s AutoHaul will occur over coming weeks, with one to two trains a day running in fully autonomous mode without a driver.

Rio Tinto says the new system will improve rail circuit capacity because of the reduced need for driver changeovers.

The miner believes that its autonomous train system will be able to slash the amount of driving train drivers need to do by light vehicles to driver changeover points by about 1.5 million kilometres a year.

The miner also believes that an autonomous train system delivers safety improvements by reducing risk at level crossings, and by the introduction of automated responses to alarms, speed restrictions and asset protection devices.
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WA Today --> BHP sends runaway iron ore train off the rails after 92km trip across Pilbara

--- Quote ---BHP has deliberately sent a driverless runaway train off the rails after it carried 268 wagons for 92km across the Pilbara outback.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said the driver had left the train — which had no passengers on board but was loaded with ore — about 4.40am on Monday to inspect a wagon when it started to move.

In an effort to stop the runaway train, the company deliberately derailed it about 120km from BHP's Port Hedland mine operations.

The ATSB is sending officers to the Pilbara to investigate after the train, loaded with ore from BHP's Newman mine site, suffered significant damage in the derailment.

"The driver of a loaded ore train consisting of four locomotives and 268 wagons stopped at the 211km point," an ATSB website incident report read.

"The driver alighted from the locomotive to inspect an issue with a wagon. While the driver was outside of the locomotive, the train commenced to runaway."

The train travelled 92km until it was deliberately derailed by a control centre 119km from Port Headland about 5.05am, the ATSB site reported.
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