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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The first new trainset for a private intercity rail company is now on home rails. The first Siemens-built passenger trainset is on Florida East Coast tracks near Jacksonville and headed south to Miami for additional testing. Pulled by Union Pacific SD70M No. 4418, the Brightline special departed Siemens’ Sacramento, Calif., shops overnight on Dec. 8 and moved along Union Pacific tracks through Southern California, through Houston, Texas, and New Orleans, where it railed on to CSX Transportation tracks.
Florida East Coast is the freight railroad that hosts and is the sister company of the All Aboard Florida private passenger service which is slated to one day move passengers at more than 100 mph between Miami and Orlando, Fla. Brightline is All Aboard Florida’s brand name for the trains and service.
Siemens has an exclusive contract to build the coaches and locomotives, which are based on the German company’s successful Charger diesel passenger locomotives.
Rail officials tell Trains News Wire that the train’s scheduling unintentionally helped it pass through dense urban areas mostly at night until Tuesday.