BNSF Railway will start the first of five track maintenance projects in South Dakota, US, in June 2009 to improve efficiency and reliability.

BNSF crews will work on tracks between major South Dakotan towns, replacing 73 miles of track.

The five maintenance projects will cost about $11m and be completed by the end of September 2009.

BNSF is expected to spend about $2bn in 2009 on upgrading existing technologies and refreshing track, signal systems, structures and freight cars.