Rail safety systems manufacturer Rowe Hankins has been selected to appear in the 2017 edition of the government publication that flagships the very best practice in British businesses
The manufacturer, based in Greater Manchester, features alongside British Prime Minister Theresa May and a small number of outstanding organisations in the Parliamentary Review.
Intended to celebrate excellence and to raise standards, it is sent to over half a million leading policymakers and businesses throughout the UK. The Review’s release is now a key fixture in the political calendar and the articles act as both a blueprint for success and a template for reform.
In an article spread over three pages, Mike Hankins, managing director of Rowe Hankins, talks about the company’s commitment to the advancement of the rail industry.
‘It fills me with immense pride to be chosen to contribute to such an important document. Contributing to the Review has given me an opportunity to promote the vital importance of investing in innovative technology that improves safety and increases utilisation in rail operations.
‘Britain was once a world leader in the rail industry but is now falling behind the rest of the world as it continues to operate on outdated and less efficient technology.
‘The UK’s railway needs a champion at Government level, who can support us to push through change. It should not need nationalisation of the railways for Britain to be working to the same standards as our European and international counterparts’ he said.
Commitment to advancement
Metal fatigue continues to be one of the main culprits in train and tram derailments. However, research shows that the use of intelligent wheel flange lubrication can increase safety and help to prevent further train and tram disasters in the future.
Globally, Rowe Hankins exports its rail safety systems to 15 countries, including Intelligent Wheel Flange Lubrication (iWFL), an innovative system which increases safety and reduces the number of train and tram derailments caused by heavily worn track.
The on-board dispensing system applies precise amounts of biodegradable lubricant and is engineered for both national rail networks and urban tram services.
The iWFL system uses geographical location-based dispensing of flange lubrication. Its intelligent design senses the location and intensity of track curves using a combination of GPS signals, speed and distance sensors.
The unit processes the data and, only where required, applies lubricant precisely at each location. When used with the company’s Intelligent Top of the Rail Friction Modifier (iTORFM) it improves safety by reducing friction and rail wear.
Return on investment
The eco-friendly and cost-effective iWFL system is already in use on rail networks across Europe, and train operators are already seeing the financial benefits. It is Rowe Hankins’ strategic aim for iWFL to be standard amongst British rail operators.
The company believe that British investment in iWFL will see a full return on capital expenditure in under 12 months, a significant saving, in the order of 10 to 15 per cent of total fuel cost alone.
The on-board system lasts for the average life of a train, approximately 30 years. The benefits include a significantly reduced wheel noise screech levels and rail wear, and an extension to wheel life by up to 50 per cent, when compared with a non-lubricated network.
It also improves service and maintenance intervals, reduces down-time and costs, and most important, boosts fuel efficiency and safety.
Entering the Asia Pacific region
In recent years, the global rail supply industry has enjoyed robust growth due to urbanisation and the shift in focus on sustainable transportation networks.
The Asia Pacific market has seen consistent growth and is a target area for the British company, who believe that the rise in the number of railway projects in the business region will increase the long-term demand for rail technologies that improve safety and increases utilisation in rail operations.
A copy of the Parliamentary Review, which was officially launched in September, can be viewed by visiting www.theparliamentaryreview.co.uk/editions/manufacturing-services/specialist
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