Constraints on rail freight network wouldn’t be tolerated on the roads

Reflecting on the recent loss of rail-borne oil traffic from Grangemouth to Lairg and Fort William to road haulage, David Spaven, the Rail Freight Group’s Scottish Representative comments:
“While the volume of oil traffic moving by rail to Fort William and Lairg was relatively modest by modern trainload standards, the loss of traffic to road haulage (400 lorry loads a year) is highly regrettable at a time when rail freight desperately needs new markets to replace coal – and policy at all levels of government firmly favours modal switch in the opposite direction.
“In the case of Lairg, Transport Scotland and Network Rail need to reflect on the rail infrastructure constraints which undermined the economics of the service, limiting freight train speeds to just 30 mph between Dingwall and Tain and restricting the tank weights to only 75% of full loading capability. These are constraints which simply would not be tolerated on the road network.”

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