Sudanese locos loaded in Durban

Jun 3, 2003
Author: P&S

A consignment of six 82-ton diesel electric locomotives was loaded on board the Thai freighter Suphan Navee at Maydon Wharf on Monday morning (2 June). The unusual cargo, all former Spoornet Class 35.200 series locos, is bound for Port Sudan and an extended life for the aging locomotives with Sudan Railways, who has leased them for four years in a joint venture from Spoornet’s International Joint Venture (IJV) organisation.

In terms of the agreement, Sudan Railways will operate the locos while IJV ensures they remain regularly maintained at the railway depot in Atbarah. For this purpose IJV has a staff of technical personnel permanently on duty in that country, working in temperatures that have reached 42° and more in May!

IJV already has a fleet of 16 ex-Spoornet U20C (Class 33.000) diesel-electric locos working in the North African country, where each loco regularly averages between 12 000 and 16 000km every month – far in excess of that achieved on Spoornet. Trains working in the Sudan also have to operate across wide ranging physical areas from sub-tropical regions to desert conditions, with sand being one of the biggest challenges facing the maintenance staff, causing the steel wheels to be re-tyred every 12 months.

Logistic management of this enormous and unusual project cargo is in the hands of the remarkable Nisa Dawood, owner, director, and one-woman operator of BEE company Afrilogix, ably assisted locally by Balmada Marine.

Details of the six locomotives are as follows:

SR3601 / Spoornet 35-224
SR3602 / Spoornet 35-225
SR3603 / Spoornet 35-227
SR3604 / Spoornet 35-229
SR3605 / Spoornet 35-243
SR3606 / Spoornet 35-244

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