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RTM Update on 3801 on 12 December 2006

The following Update on 3801 appeared on the RTM website on 12 December 2006. It covers the movement of 3801 to the Hunter Valley Training Company and the 3801 assessment.
  • The report of the Advisory Committee headed by Vince O’Rourke to review the future management of 3801 was accepted by the NSW Transport Minister on 27 November 2006. 
  • Locomotive 3801 arrived at Hunter Valley Training Company (HVTC) East Greta on 27 November for a boiler assessment as recommended by the O’Rourke Committee.      
  • RailCorp is funding the assessment work – HVTC is the head contractor; Puffing Billy Railway (PBR) is conducting the assessment as HVTC’s sub-contractor, using PBR’s own labour resources and labour from NSW Rail Transport Museum (RTM) and HVTC – the locomotive is in the care of PBR during the assessment process. The structure of the assessment process was as recommended by the O’Rourke Committee.    
  • The locomotive was stabled upon arrival at HVTC on 27 November by 3801 Limited and RTM personnel. Any subsequent work on the locomotive (including storage procedures) needed the approval and arrangements of HVTC as the site owner – the locomotive was ‘dry’ stored (ready for the assessment) appropriately and immediately, once the approvals and arrangements were in place.        
  • Two 3801 Limited employees were used initially for two days, paid for by RTM as a means of keeping a collaborative continuity in the workforce with the locomotive. The need for collaboration between 3801 Ltd and RTM is also a key outcome of the O’Rourke Committee – RTM thanks the 3801 Ltd employees for their assistance. It has always been RTM’s stated intention to involve people who care for 3801.             
  • Two RTM employees are now on site assisting PBR with the assessment – the RTM employees will remain on site working with the PBR team and HVTC supervisors and apprentices.            
  • RTM requested HVTC provide track certification for the line into the HVTC depot before moving 3801 to East Greta – the track was inspected and spot repairs undertaken in the few days prior to the short notice transfer.     
  • The track in the HVTC shed subsequently deflected under part of the locomotive – the locomotive rested at a slight angle, but despite rumour, has not been damaged and there was no danger.          
  • 3801 is now located outside the HVTC depot with round-the-clock security whilst track repairs are undertaken in the HVTC shed - the assessment work continues with PBR and RTM employees. Once the track repairs are complete, 3801 will again be moved inside the depot.

The HVTC depot is private property – access to 3801 is not available to the public during the time the locomotive is at the East Greta depot.