SEPTA bringing new locomotives online

One of the new SEPTA locomotives pulls into the Chestnut Hill station. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

One of the new SEPTA locomotives pulls into the Chestnut Hill station. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

SEPTA has unveiled its newest fleet of locomotives that officials say will make mass transit more reliable.

The transit agency purchased 15 ACS-64 Siemens locomotives at a cost of more than $100 million. The model was selected after Amtrak chose it for its fleet, said Jeff Kneuppel, SEPTA general manager.

“We followed right behind their order, which was great for us,” he said. “If there were any issues, the kinks got worked out over on Amtrak.”

Pennsylvania state Sen. John Rafferty, who heads the Senate Transportation Committee, said the purchase is part of the state’s overall effort to improve the lives of commuters.

“Showing the people that ride mass transit — which is critical here for our lifeline in the southeast part of the state — that we are making sure we have the most efficient, most effective state-of-the-art equipment,” said Rafferty, R-Montgomery.

The new locomotives are expected to be in full service by the end of the year after passing 500 miles of testing.

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