01 April 2013
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Fastening system help deter cable theft crime

Products supplied by Alcoa Fastening Systems (AFS) have received official endorsement for use in the campaign to deter theft of valuable copper cable from the UK's railway network, a crime which costs UK industry some £16 million per year.

Searching for a more robust solution to the easily-removed nuts and bolts at spider junction boxes, Network Rail engineers in Newcastle upon Tyne approached the team at AFS. Following a series of rigorous trials and tests a Certificate of Acceptance was granted by the Network Rail Acceptance Panel, authorising the use of Huck® fasteners and associated installation tooling.

With installation training provided by AFS, Network Rail replaced the traditional nut and bolt system with Huck C50LR-BR20-12G and C6LB-R12-12G fasteners and using additional galvanised casing to house them, attached the cable to the track as well as the junction box.

From April 2010 to the end of March 2011 there was a 70% increase in theft of cable, which accounts for 39% of all railway property theft and is second only to terrorism on British Transport Police's list of priority crimes. Even though these figures saw a reduction of almost 50% in 2012, railway incidents still cause up to countless hours of delay each year to commuters, long distance travellers and deliveries to essential organisations such as power stations and hospitals.

Paul Gay

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Arconic Fastening Systems & Rings Ltd

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