WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced a $54.6 million loan to Kansas City Southern Railway Company (KCSR) for the purchase of 30 new General Electric ES44AC locomotives. These diesel-electric locomotives, built in Erie, Pennsylvania, will help KCSR meet increasing economic demand, and are more energy-efficient and produce significantly less carbon emissions than the locomotives they are replacing.
“We are seeing President Obama’s commitment to rail boost manufacturing all across America,” LaHood said. “This is the kind of investment in our transportation systems that creates jobs, boosts the economy and improves the flow of goods.”
In addition to energy and environmental benefits, these new locomotives will allow KCSR to create a safer operating environment through improved train handling, more crashworthy cabs, and state-of-the-art train controls, which will promote crew alertness. The locomotives will be deployed throughout KCSR’s system to accommodate the increased demand for shipments of coal, chemicals, grain, sand, stone, gravel, plastics, metals, and automobiles.
The loan is from the Federal Railroad Administration’s Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) Program.
“The RRIF program is a model of how we can leverage federal dollars to stimulate private investment and grow the economy,” said Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph C. Szabo. “The program provides steady, affordable financing for major rail construction and expansion projects.”