Other Privately Operated Locomotives

I have included all the currently operating locomotive classes, as well as many other mainline classes.I won't include many of the smaller industrial locomotives, to save space, as there are so many of them.
Where there is no official class number, I have substituted the number of the first loco. A "#" indicates that the locomotive does not have a number.

There are other private railway operators in Australia outside of the mining industry, perhaps the main difference being that few of them have their own networks - most operate over government (or now in some cases ex-government) networks.

Asia Pacific Transport (Freightlink) Junee Railway Workshops (Austrac)
Australian Transport Network
Chicago Freight Car Leasing Australia
Great Northern Railway
Independent Railways of Australia
Northern Rivers Railroad
Rail Technical Support Group
Silverton Tramway
South Spur Rail
Southern Shorthaul Railroad
West Coast Railway Patricks Coote Industrial Rail
El Zorro EDI

Asia-Pacifc Transport (Freightlink)

Asia-Pacific Transport (APT) are the freight operators on the Alice Springs-Darwin line.
They are a consortium made up of KBR, Barclay Mowlem, John Holland Group, Macmahon Holdings, and ARG. With the breakup of ARG, APT/Freightlink went to GWA.
All six locos are in Freghtlink livery.

Junee Railway Workshops (Austrac)

Junee Railway Workshops is the new name for Austrac (Australian Traction Corporation). Currently, it just refurbishes locos at Junee, and also plans to establish a branch line loco pool in Junee.

In the past, Austrac ran its own trains in southwestern NSW, and from Sydney to Melbourne; however, in October 2002, Austrac switched to leasing only.

Australian Transport Network

ATN have made their first move on to the mainland by hauling grain. They are using these locos to haul grain from Dimboola (Victoria) and the Riverina of NSW to Melbourne and Port Kembla.
They ceased operations for a while due to the drought, but are now running again. In early 2004 they were bought by Pacific National.
L254 is in ATN livery, while L251 and L270 are in PacNat livery.

Chicago Freight Car Leasing Australia (CFCLA)

The Australian subsidiary of CFCL hires both locomotives and rollingstock out to operators. Their first locos were the EL class, however, they have bought more recently from Freightcorp. Many of their locos are on hire to LVRF.
Most recently, they bought nearly all of Great Northern's locos and rollingstock after the latter was hit by rising insurance costs; however, these locos are now with Southern Shorthaul Railroad (see below)..
They have also bought most of West Coast Railway's locos for refurbishment and return to service.
All up, CFCLA have around 75 locos.

Those locos in the CFCLA livery are: B76, B80; all EL class; FL220; all GL class; JL403; all KL class; RL303; S300, 311; T369, 373, 377, 385, 387; 4471, 4477; all TL class; all VL class.
Locos in the Allco livery are C503 & 508.


Comsteel (an ANI subsidiary) is well known in the railway industry as it is a manufacturer of railway wheels and axles, and similar equipment. It is based at Waratah (Newcastle).

Coote Industrial Rail

Coote Industrial Rail has taken over Rail Technical Support Group, as well as Southern & Silverton (South Spur Rail and Silverton) around 2007-2008. This provides Coote with some 55 locos. They have also been involved with construction work on the Fortescue Metals Group line.
See the separate sections on these groups for their operations.

T383, 442s1-442s2, 442s5, 48s28, 48s35, 4908, 80s1, 80s4, 80s6, 869, D47-D49, D51, F40, K205-206, K210, KA212, R1902, ZB2120, 2125, 2129, and RL301-302, 304-306 are in Coote's livery.


CRT (Colin Rees Transport) is a private intermodal transport company, with depots in Syndey and Melbourne. As well as the CargoSprinter and the 73's, they lease several X200 rail tractors from Pacific National. Both CS class and 7333 & 7334 are in CRT livery. They have now been taken over by QR National.


Manufacturer EDI has made a move into the motive power lease area, with 9 locos for QRN. Similar locos for other operators may follow in the future.

El Zorro

El Zorro are a Victorian operator using a small number of ex-V/Line/FA S, T, and Y class locos for regional grain and other haulage.
T386, W244, Y145 & Y168 are in El Zorro livery.

Great Northern Railway Services

GNR is made up of ex-V/Line employees who use ex-V/Line, ex-Westrail, and ex-Freightcorp locos for shunting operations, mostly in the Melbourne yard area, as well as extra units on Lysaghts steel trains, and for construction trains. They also work trip trains in the Melbourne region. As well as this, they have loaned some of their locos to other operators.
They are based at the former TNT container siding at Dynon/North Melbourne. With the acquisition of the GM's, they are now running mainline trains. They also crew Patricks and FreightCorp trains into Melbourne.
This is the first fully-independent railway operator on government tracks in Victoria; however, public liability insurance forced them to cease broad-gauge operations recently. Most of their locos and rollingstock have been taken over by CFCLA, and then Southern Shorthaul Railroad (who also took over S317).
As a result, the company no longer exists.

Independent Railways of Australia (LVRF)

Lachlan Valley Railfreight is a private operator based at Minto in Sydney's southwest. The only locos they initially owned were some 47 class locos, with most being leased from other operators and preservation groups. Since then, they have bought some locos of their own.
They operate trains in the Sydney area, and also between Cowra and Sydney.

LVRF changed their name to "Independent Railways of Australia" in 2007.

Locos in IRA livery are MZ1428-1429, 1431-1432, 1435, 1437, 1440 and 1443.


Manildra Group is a NSW flour processor, and they operate some ex-SRA and ex-BHP locos for shunting at their sidings. MM1-2, MM3-4, and 7340 are in Manildra livery.

Northern Rivers Railroad

NRR is another recent entrant to the deregulated NSW rail freight sector, and again also using ex-SRA locos. They are based at Casino, and operate in the northern section of NSW, with their first train running in late 1997. Currently, they operate freight traffic between Grafton and Murwillumbah, and on to Brisbane. They also run passenger services (RitzRail) along this line as well.

Queensland Rail has recently bought the freight operations of NRR in an attempt to move on the standard gauge network; the new company is called QR National (Interail).


As well as their involvement in Pacific National, Patricks have now started their own railway operations using ex-Westrail locos at Bowmans in SA, along with ex-Freightcorp locos at Botany in Sydney. 103, 1872, 1873, 4903, 4906, 7307, and 7321 are in Patricks livery.

Rail Technical Support Group

RTS is another company that is involved in shunting at Melbourne, and are based in the Dynon Car Shed. They use the same type of locos as Great Northern and ATN. Currently, they are only involved in locomotive and rollingstock maintenance, and do only shunting and leasing.

RTSG have been acquired by Coote Industrial Rail.


SCT (Specialised Container Transport) are an interstate transport company, with facilities in Melbourne, Adelaide, and Perth. Their trains initially used Freight Australia locos for haulage, however, they also have some ex-Westrail locos at their terminals for shunting. They now have 15 new locos for mainline work. As well, they have recently bought two T class locos and two rail tractors (ex-SRA and QRN) for shunting.
H2-3, H5, K208, T345, T414, X209 and the G and SCT classes are in SCT livery.

Silverton Tramway

The Silverton Tramway was formed due to interstate rivalry between NSW and SA; as their railways neared the border, neither would let the other cross the border. Therefore, Silverton (called a Tramway because it was a private railway) took over, and from the 1890's to 1970 it ran from Broken Hill to Cockburn (SA) via Silverton. With the completion of standard gauge, Silverton were then relegated to shunting in Broken Hill yard. When NR was created, Silverton bought some ex-SRA Alcos, refurbished them, and leased them to NR until the latter's own loco contract was completed. Silverton have also shown interest in shortline operations in NSW.
With the decrease in mining activity at Broken Hill, Silverton have moved to Parkes, and will base most of their motive power there. Silverton is currently hauling mineral ores from the Cobar mines to Parkes for National Rail, and will soon also carry ore to Newcastle. They have also hired a loco to Austrac.
Silverton have bought a number of locos from Pacific National; of these, some will be used in service, some will be for spare parts, and others may be onsold.
Silverton and South Spur have merged in early 2006; the combined operator will be known as 'Southern-Silverton Rail'.
In 2007 they have become part of a group called 'Coote Industrial Rail'.
Some of the locos (C503, 504-505, 507-508) have been reptained in an Allco livery, this is similar to the old VR blue & gold livery. C502 is in a South Spur livery.
Other Silverton preserved locomotives:
26 Sulphide Street Museum, Broken Hill

26 was a narrow-gauge shunting loco, used at the "old" Broken Hill yard.

South Spur Rail

South Spur Rail is another private operator in the Perth area, using ex-Westrail locos for shunting and other purposes. They also operate along the standard gauge to Kalgoorlie. As well, they also operate in NSW.
Along with the locos listed below they have ex-Westrail F40. Those locos in South Spur livery are D47, D49, D51, K206, K210, KA212; NA1874; R1902; ZB2125 and ZB2129.
Silverton and South Spur have merged in early 2006; the combined operator will be known as 'Southern-Silverton Rail'.
In 2007 they have become part of a group called 'Coote Industrial Rail'. 

Southern Shorthaul Railroad

This new operator has taken over from Great Northern. Their fleet is the ex-GN locos that are on long-term lease from CFCLA, along with their own locos.
They started operations at the end of 2003, and their work involves shunting and trip trains in Sydney and Melbourne, basically taking over from Great Northern. Those locos in Southern Shorthaul livery include 4483; B61; GM10, GM22, GM27; J102, J103; S317; T363, 376 and 381.

West Coast Railway

When the Victorian government privatised the running of two passenger lines (of what was left running!) in 1994, West Coast was one of the operators, and the only one to use its own rollingstock. WCR run the Melbourne-Warrnambool passenger service, and have taken over the old East Ballarat Loco Depot to use as a base. They use ex-V/Line locos that have been refurbished. Despite the age of the B and S classes, they still performed well when compared to more recent V/Line classes.
Australian Public Trustees recently took over a 50% share in West Coast from Connex.
In May 2004, underframe problems in the ageing B and S classes required inspections, and this may have helped seal the fate for the company, which has now ceased operations. Most of their locos have been sold to CFCLA.

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