The Mount Isa to Townsville Rail-line requires an urgent upgrade. The current line is experiencing capacity constraints due to inefficient rail and terminal operations.
These constraints include:
- Access to the Port of Townsville
- Short passing loop lengths and
- Limited passing opportunities
Where train lines should travel at speeds of 80km/h, the Mt Isa to Townsville line restricts speeds to 36km/h and less in many areas due to the poor state of the line. These speed limits create inefficiencies and are therefore driving demand for use of the rail line down.
The Port of Townsville will not have capacity to accept increases in the number of truck deliveries through the Port; therefore it is of vital importance that the rail line upgrade is prioritised to maintain the Port’s competitiveness.
Glencore, a Mount Isa mining company has warned its North Queensland copper processing assets are at risk of closing if transport efficiencies aren’t improved with decreased transport costs.