Direct Rail Services has confirmed that one of its Class 88 broke new ground last week when it ran the length of the East Coast Main Line.
Last weekend, freight operator, DRS, ran a new diversionary route to enable the Class 88 locomotives to run almost the length of the ECML on electric power, as well as feeder routes that link up Daventry and Mossend.
The route normally follows the West Coast Main Line, but engineering work last weekend required a diversion.
Normally, this would have meant using a Class 66 locomotive, but a new path allowed the entire journey to be powered by the overhead lines using the Class 88 on the East Coast Main Line.
David Robinson, Deputy Director of Operations Delivery, said: “This is a fantastic new route which enables us to utilise our excellent Class 88 locomotives as usual rather than replacing them with a diesel-powered engine. Each freight train takes around 76 lorries off our roads and running on electricity allows the engines to be much more environmentally friendly and helps with our commitment to reduce CO2 emissions. We’re delivering vital goods across the length of Britain and this, over 400-mile, journey highlights the benefit of rail freight and the smart use of utilising our electrified rail network.”
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