Austrak’s newest factory, their twelfth worldwide and the first in Dubai, produced its first pre-stressed concrete railway sleepers last week.
The Austrak team has taken the Dubai factory from contract award to commissioning phase in only 21 weeks.
The facility is operating as a joint venture between Austrak and Laing O’Rourke Middle East, with Austrak providing its technology, technical and sales support and Laing O’Rourke providing the local operational aspects.
After 16 years with Austrak in Australia, Larry Hadley was seconded to lead the JV in the United Arab Emirates and said he was impressed by the team effort.
"To begin factory construction on 24 August and to have sleepers going out the door last week is an amazing feat," Mr Hadley said.
"We have an exceptional team here and now that we are up and running, I believe we will be able to surpass production targets in the coming months."
The new factory utilises improved technology, including insulated moulds which provide increased environmental and cost benefits. Insulated moulds mean that the sleepers self-cure, reducing reliance on steam and electricity.
Production targets for the Dubai factory could be as high as 1.4 million sleepers produced each year.