This week America's Federal Railroad Administration requested Buy America rules be waived on certain parts for the California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) rolling stock due to lack of manufacturing capability in the US.
A public consultation is on-going prior to final decision but a president has already been set on Amtrak's fleet.
CHSRA has stated this as only a temporary fix until the US can deliver the 100% domestic content the Buy America terms require. However to meet tight timescales and quality parameters this is unlikely to be achieved in the short term.
The California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) has requested several key components of its trains be exempt from the USA’s strict local content requirements because there is nowhere in the country that can currently manufacture them. The body shells, braking system and bogies were all included in two waiver requests published by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) on its website last week. Buy America rules require 100 per cent of the fleet’s content be sourced and manufactured in the USA, but the FRA could choose to remove this restriction if it feels there would be an issue with availability or quality, that the trains couldn’t be procured and delivered within a reasonable time, or that mandating domestic content would increase the cost of the project by more than 25 per cent.