British rolling stock leasing company Porterbrook is set to supply two bi-mode FLEX trains to the Rail Operations Group (ROG).
Scheduled to be delivered early next year, the two FLEX parcels trains will support ROG’s rail postal business.
The order is aligned with ROG’s strategic plan to shift from road to rail for logistics and express parcels services.
Most of the shipping companies are currently exploring railways as a part of their logistics chain due to increasing congestion on the road network, unavailability of HGV drivers and the growth of e-commerce business.
Rail Operations Group CEO Karl Watts said: “The time is right for a modal shift from road to rail for logistics and express parcels services. ROG are leading the industry in delivering this shift and the FLEX trains are the perfect rail-borne solution to make this happen.
“There is huge opportunity to re-establish a comprehensive network of express parcels trains and help reduce the number of commercial vehicles on UK roads which will, in turn, help to drive improvements in the UK economy.”
Under the order, Porterbrook will refurbish two of its FLEX trains designed for light logistics traffic.
The bi-mode trains can operate on electrified and non-electrified routes to enable swift transportation of goods across the rail network.
ROG can use the FLEX trains to deliver shipments to a single client or to multiple clients, depending on the requirements.
Porterbrook CEO Mary Grant said: “The UK’s light logistics sector is experiencing huge changes and we’re delighted that we can support the sustainable solution on the rail network.
“Porterbrook is particularly pleased that ROG have recognised the potential for non-passenger use of our innovative FLEX trains and over coming months we will be exploring further opportunities to support the successful UK rail freight sector.”