GBRf eyes international expansion with locomotive order

GB Railfreight (GBRf) is to purchase 29 new locomotives in a bid to double its turnover over the next three years.

The freight operator has announced places to procure 13 Class 66 locomotives from Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) and 16 Class 92 locomotives from parent company Europorte.

Both sets of locomotives are being procured now ahead of a change in EU emissions legislation in January 2015 which is expected to have significant implications for locomotive manufactures and operators.

By purchasing Class 92 locomotives from Europorte, GBRf will be able to operate through the Channel Tunnel, opening up international haulage opportunities for the company.

The new electric locomotives will also allow GBRf to plan more effectively around the UK’s major programme of electrification works.

John Smith, managing director of GBRf, said: “This procurement, the largest in our company‚Äôs history, is a proud moment for us and is a sign that we are investing in the future of rail freight in this country. In return, we need to see a long-term sustainable approach to rail freight pricing in the UK in order to allow us to continue building a rail freight sector that truly serves the UK economy.”

Today’s (February 10) announcement takes the total number of new locomotives on order for GBRf to 37.