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International Railroad Discussion > Angola 2022 Benguela Railway


Date: 11/24/22 13:19
Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: GN1969

Recently I was in Angola and visited the Benguela Railway (Caminho de Ferro de Benguela or CFB for short). The 3'6" gauge railway runs nearly 1,300 km from the port of Lobito on the South Atlantic to the border of the DR Congo. Built by English interests in the early 1900s during the Portuguese colonial era, destroyed during a brutal civil war after independence, rebuilt by the Chinese and their $2 billion loan in the early 2000s, the railway is one of the most strategic in Africa.

Where wood-burning and oil-burning Garratt steam locomotives once held domain, today 50 new GE C30ACi locomotives are the kings of the line. Traffic is still light on the main line as this transportation channel to central Africa is slowly regaining its credibility after being closed for nearly three decades as a result of the civil war.

Picture 1: The head office of the CFB in Lobito.
Picture 2: Chinese-built DMUs for the 41 km Lobito-Benguela-Bimbas commuter service. 
Picture 3: A 2017-built GE C30ACi in Lobito.

Pictures taken on November 5, 2022.



Edited 6 time(s). Last edit at 11/24/22 13:41 by GN1969.








Date: 11/24/22 22:57
Re: Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: boejoe

Didn't know (until now) that Angola had a railroad operation.  Nice pics.
jb



Date: 11/25/22 02:56
Re: Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: pedrop

Very nice pictures. The diesel engine looks the brazilian ES43BBi model. It's a ES44 with narrow cab.

Pedro Rezende
Vespasiano, MG
https://youtube.com/c/minasgeraisrailways1



Date: 11/25/22 03:45
Re: Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: 86235

Excellent set, thanks



Date: 11/26/22 05:16
Re: Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: march_hare

I went to a slide show in the 1970s, can't remember who gave it, but the presenter noted that some of the Benguela Garratts burned eucalyptus logs, giving the  engine servicing area a distinct smell. I think he compared it to Vicks Vaporub or something similar. 

Good to see it has been revived. 



Date: 11/26/22 17:27
Re: Angola 2022 Benguela Railway
Author: GN1969

As I have read, the oil burning Garratts were used on the very arid western end of the line between Lobito and Cubal, The wood burning Garetts and other wood burning steam locomotives were used on the majority eastern portion of the line from Cubal to the Congo border. Eucalyptus plantations owned by the railway dotted both sides of the line to provide wood for the locomotives.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/30/22 08:24 by GN1969.



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