NICS was recently used with success on a major railtrack repair project on the Tyne and Wear metro.

  • The track to the six stations from Wallsend to Tynemouth was under repair for 23 days from 11 August 2012.
  • During this time Balfour Beatty Rail (BBR) completed the renewal of 5,646m of twin track, complete with new ballast and new concrete sleepers.
  • BBR are on record as saying the railtrack repair work could not be carried out within the allocated time (23 days) without BBR using the NICS crossings, set up within the section of the track under repair.
  • Actual Progress achieved far exceeded programme to the extent that by 24 August, 70% of the work had been completed as opposed to the 50% programmed.  Also 40% more work was carried out than was programmed.
  • The actual progress achieved allowed BBR to complete all railtrack repair work on time, whilst reducing the amount of nightshift and non-productive overtime working originally planned during the latter stages of the project.
  • BBR also achieved savings by forming runaround sections to keep the railway vehicles, plant and equipment moving.   The work was also completed without closing more stations.


Studies using the technology have identified the following:

  • An examination of the NW 2007 Renewals Programme demonstrated significant cost savings.
  • The use of NICS to provide a “temporary” siding for timber demonstrated a substantial saving per tonne when compared to average market prices.
  • The use of NICS to allow “first and last” freight or engineering trains to extend possessions, but with time and cost savings .
  • Use of NICS to provide temporary connections between permanent rail infrastructure and new build or “green field” rail sites.
  • Examination of various capital projects has demonstrated large savings in material delivery costs,  rail based plant delivery and methods of working, all of which can improve outputs targets such as handover quality and job completion timeframes.