Articles on Railways

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New African economic history is challenging earlier wisdom by showing, for example, that railways have had profound effects, both positive and negative on African societies. Reuters/Thomas Mukoya

The renaissance in understanding Africa’s economic past

African economic history has had a renaissance and its most valuable contribution has been to show that Africans have not always been poor, nor are current poverty levels an inevitable destiny.
The National Transportation Safety Board made an ‘urgent’ recommendation to improve the safety of oil-carrying rail cars. Rick Wilking/Reuters

Shipping oil by rail is booming. Technology can make it safer

While federal agencies ponder regulations for safer oil rail cars, researchers are developing high-tech inspection and safety systems.
This derailed oil-carrying train in Ontario in March was the third from a single freight company in a month. Reuters

Despite disasters, oil-by-rail transport is getting safer

Derailed train cars carrying oil have more communities concerned about spills. What's behind the oil-by-rail boom and a federal agency's 'urgent' call last week for better safety?
Then treasurer and now New South Wales Premier Mike Baird (centre) at Newcastle’s Wickham train station in 2013. AAP/Michael Sin

Will it be the end of the line for Newcastle’s train, or for Baird?

If you're looking for key battles to watch in the New South Wales election, which could help decide who forms the next state government, then you need to know the story of the Newcastle railway line.
Same service, higher prices. Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Rail fare rises show once again the pitfalls of privatisation

The announcement that rail fares will increase by up to 5.5% is yet another indictment of the failure of the country’s privatised railway industry. Railway privatisation was sold to the public on the basis…

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