UK rail companies work hard to maintain Drax’s biomass supply

GB Railfreight (GBRf) is working closely with Drax to maintain biomass supplies needed to guarantee electricity for millions of homes and businesses during the pandemic.

Severe storms and flooding in the area near Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire, UK resulted in damage to the rail tracks. GBRf has been working with the company to reschedule rail deliveries and maximise capacity on the rail link while the repairs are completed.

According to Drax, the rail planners who helped to rework the timetable to accommodate the new train timings, combined forces with train drivers, signal controllers, Network Rail train marshals and Drax logistics specialists to restore flows of biomass to the power station, which supports four million households.

"GBRf is playing its part in supporting the UK's COVID-19 response by helping to keep essential services running across the country," said John Smith, managing director of GBRf. "Our partnership with Drax Power Station in Yorkshire is proof of this.

"We are delivering vital supplies of sustainable biomass, which are transported across the country by rail to Drax, which supplies 5% of the UK's electricity needs.

"GBRf stops at nothing to get vital supplies from one part of the country to the other - as we saw during the recent floods near Drax. We will be redoubling our efforts to ensure we keep the country going during these trying times."

The teams working to keep the UK's rail freight system running and to keep the lights on at Drax Power Station are doing a "tremendous job", said Drax CEO Will Gardiner. He commented: "As teams work around the clock to keep generating the power the country needs, their health, safety and wellbeing are vital.

"Across all our sites, we have implemented strategies to reduce the chances of spreading the virus and have operational plans in place to ensure continued delivery of power into the grid. GBRf's rail deliveries are an important part of our global supply chain for sustainable biomass that supports thousands of jobs and has delivered economic growth across the north of England and in the US south."

Nick King, group director of Network Services at Network Rail, added: "The railway plays a crucial part in keeping Britain running, particularly in these challenging times, and strong teamwork across the rail industry is absolutely key in keeping freight services moving.

"Recent flooding in this area brought additional challenges to keeping services moving, however, hard work and dedication of our people has meant that vital supplies of sustainable biomass have continued to be transported."

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