SGR cargo train to Nairobi delayed on volume shortfall

The Kenya Railways commercial cargo train. FILE PHOTO | NMG
The Kenya Railways commercial cargo train. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The second Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) freight train will not arrive in Nairobi today as scheduled, the Kenya Railways Corporation (KR) has said.

Speaking to the Business Daily Wednesday, Kenya Railways managing director Atanas Maina said the locomotive will instead arrive on Thursday because it’s not filled to capacity.

“The second cargo train which was expected to arrive in Nairobi today from Mombasa will arrive tomorrow because it is not full,” said Mr Maina.

The train was expected to arrive in the capital on Wednesday evening from the port of Mombasa.

The first commercial cargo train arrived in Nairobi on Monday at the newly completed Embakasi Inland Container Depot (ICD).

KR is set to run freight trains with 54 double-stack flat wagons each, carrying 216 twenty foot containers each with a total load of 4,000 tonnes on each train.

The state corporation has been given a target of six million tonnes to the Nairobi ICD, which has been expanded from a capacity of 180,000 teus (twenty-foot equivalent unit) to 450,000 teus at a cost of Sh21 billion.

The 25-tonne axle flat wagons have a capacity to carry a payload of 70 tonnes and will move at a speed of 80 kilometres per hour, taking an average of eight hours between Mombasa and Nairobi.

This will cut the rail transport service by half when compared to the time metre gauge trains took to transport goods between the two cities.