Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray today joined commuter rail riders and state officials aboard a new diesel-electric locomotive on its inaugural ride from Worcester to Boston. The state-of-the-art diesel-electric locomotive is one of two trains purchased from the Utah Transit Authority, and marks the first time in more than two decades that new locomotives will join the MBTA’s commuter rail fleet.
By employing new technology that makes the engines more fuel efficient and prevents unnecessary idling, the new locomotives will reduce nitrogen oxide levels by 20 tons per engine annually. Each locomotive in the existing fleet burns 228,000 gallons of fuel per year, resulting in the release of 241 tons of nitrogen oxide. These new locomotives will burn about 36,500 fewer gallons while generating more horsepower. The energy savings will be about $78,000 a year per locomotive.
In June 2010, the MassDOT Board of Directors approved the purchase of an additional 20 new diesel-electric locomotives from Motive Power, Inc. of Boise, Idaho at a cost of $114 million. The 20 new locomotives will be brought into service in 2013 to replace the 20 oldest units in the fleet.
The MBTA commuter rail fleet operates under a contract with the Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad Company. The fleet consists of 410 coaches including 140 bi-level and 270 single coaches, and 80 locomotives. The fleet ranges in age from seven to 29 years. Commuter rail service carries approximately 148,000 customers round-trip each weekday.