CANADIAN LOCOMOTIVE SHOPS
Geoff Williams snapped brand new UP SD70ACe’s 8767 and 8772 on the EMD test track May 4th. The pair arrived on the UP two weeks later and were inspected at UP Proviso Yard. There are two remaining, UP 8773 and one other UP unit. On May 10th the four KCS painted SD70ACe’s and some others still in primer were seen south of the complex.
As work at the London plant slowly winds down, the four KCS units were photographed on the ready tracks at the plant. Also, three lease units, EMDX 2110 and 2111 (in blue), and EMDX 2113 (in primer) were still on the property, along with a couple UP units hiding near the paint shop. There are a small number of incomplete units still inside the plant, and the area to the east of the facility that had been filled with cab units and other body panels, is now almost empty. Walter Pfefferle took these photos May 24th.
KCS SD70ACe’s May 24th:
EMDX SD70ACe 2110, 2111, and 2113 May 24th:
EMD Shop Switcher #1 on May 24th:
Delivered to UP in May, UP SD70ACe 8768 and 8766 were seen testing in London back on April 20th:
The closure of the EMD facility cost $38 million and 465 employees lost their jobs, and the curtain closed on more than 50 years of industrial railway history in Canada.
Amid a detailed quarterly financial report released April 25th by Caterpillar Inc. outlining record profits and revenues, a line item detailed the cost of closing Electro-Motive Diesel on Oxford St., the locomotive manufacturing plant owned by the U.S. industrial giant."It is a sad day. It shows this is about corporate greed, about how little they can pay workers and not about people and what we can make;' said Bob Scott, Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) chairperson of Local 27, representing workers at EMD.
The quarterly report also reveals the corporate strategy behind shuttering EMD is working, said analyst Kumar Saha, with Frost and Sullivan in Toronto. The company has forecast "modest" sales growth this year, about 15%, but has managed to post record returns by reducing costs, and wanting to slash wages and benefits at EMD by 50% was about cost control, he said. "Cost containment has been their strategy the last few years and they see that paying off now. That was their goal - they were upfront in saying they wanted to reduce costs:' But the report also reveals Cat's backlog or orders is growing, from $31 billion at the end of 2011 to $31.7 billion at the first quarter's end, a $700-million jump in three months for all the products and machinery it makes, locomotives included. That means they can't keep up with orders, a problem a fully operating London EMD plant would have helped with, and a sign its Muncie, Ind., plant which Cat intended to take over locomotive production from EMD, is not up to speed. "They have more orders than they can handle. I think eventually they will deal with it," Saha said. The backlog has also been caused by global industrial growth as the impact of the recession ebbs and more nations need heavy machinery. The orders are coming in fast, he added. The London plant could have made about 75 locomotives since the workers were locked out Jan. 1 - the plant was shuttered Feb. 3 - and that would have put a dent in the backlog - the Muncie plant isn't working at the same capacity the London plant had.
“However Caterpillar is not concerned with short-term reports or backlogs because its London strategy was part of a long-term plan to reduce labour costs, Saha said. "It is not fair to measure this by what happened in London. There was a cost of closing that plant and it is a long-term play," he said. As for the $38 million, the bulk of that is to pay for the windup plan negotiated by the CAW for its workers, as well as the cost of moving machinery and mothballing the operation. It also covers costs of paying managers working in the plant now until the end of May, completing construction of 18 locomotives. "It is sad they put their profits ahead of the workers. It is all about corporate greed for them," said Coun. Bill Armstrong. "They are a successful company and it is sad they do not want to share that with their workers:"
CATERPILLAR INC’S FIRST QUARTER FOR 2012:
- $60 billion in sales in 2011 and this year sales projected to be $68 billion to $72 billion.
- $2.37 profit per share, a 29% increase from first-quarter 2011 profit per share of $1.84.
- First-quarter 2012 sales and revenues of $15.9 billion, up 23% from $12.9 billion in the first quarter of 2011.
- Profit was a record $1.5 billion in the quarter, an increase of 29% from $1.2 billion in the first quarter of 2011.
- 2011 profit: $7.1 billion.
And $16.9 million (According to recent media reports) was the compensation paid to Douglas Oberhelman, Caterpillar Inc. chairperson and CEO, in 2011, a 60% increase over the previous year.
George Redmond snapped EMDX SD70ACe 2012 as the 4th unit on eastbound NS train 111 at Centralia, IL on May 19th.
CAD Railway Services (Lachine, QC) are continuing their contract to overhaul 15 SOO SD60’s and one SD60M to Tier 0+ compliance, equip them with AESS (Locomotive Automatic Engine Start/Stop) to conserve fuel, and repaint and renumber to CP 6200-series.
RBRX F59PH 18537, CITX SD40-2 2804 and CP SD9043MAC 9157 is still stored at St-Luc awaiting an engine change out at Cadrail. On May 1st CP SD9043MAC 9142 left CAD and was moved dead to Winnipeg.
The VIA Rail F40PH-2’s at CAD Railway Services for rebuild and listed in their expected order of release:
VIA 6414 (Loto Quebec), 6445 (Coors Lite), 6435, 6408 (Coors Lite), 6451, 6427, 6440, and 6415. Rebuilt VIA F40PH-3 6420 was released from CAD in early May and 6424 in late-May.
The last F40PH-2 to be done will be 6453, which will likely be headed to CAD within a month. This means that the days of the yellow-faced F40 are extremely limited.
In late-news, CADRAIL was in negotiations in May to
Since April, things are very quiet at IRSI in Moncton, New Brunswick as lawyers and politicians meet to discuss if the operation can be salvaged in any form. As of May 18th, about five RDC’s and six LRC cars are stalled in various stages of repair. Canadian taxpayers will most certainly take a hit on this failed venture.
As well, in May Industrial Rail slapped VIA Rail with two lawsuits worth nearly $32 million. Click HERE for the story.
Abitibi-Bowater's former CN SW1200RS DESX 1305 is utilized by the paper manufacturer as the plant switcher at their large Iroquois Falls mill. Mike Robin caught her at Cochrane Yard on May 4th. Sources state that this unit, along with ex-ONR GP9 1600,are to be shipped to Diesel Electric Services for a complete overhaul. DESX 1305 will be the first, followed by 1600 once 1305 is completed.
On May 6th Jay Butler caught ETR 107 sitting at the Lambton Diesel Shop in Sarnia awaiting a new engine. In the background were LDSX 0176 and 0178 and former Railink nee-CN Sw1200RS 1359.
© CRO June 2012