RHTT Rail Head Treatment Train Profile and Models

RHTT Rail Head Treatment Train

56105 leads a RHTT set heading to Kings Norton in September 2015. ©Clagmaster

In 2003, Network Rail ordered 50 FEA-F container wagons to replace a small and increasingly unreliable fleet of Rail Head Treatment Trains (RHTT). They designed three types of module to be used during Autumn when leaf fall can cause trains to slip on the rails. They use a mixture of water jets and a paste called 'Sandite' (a mixture of sand, aluminium and a unique adhesive) to clear the rails and to aid adhesion. The three modules are; Water tanks, Sandite applicators and Pump platforms. Even though these are only seen for a few months a year, they remain one of the most photographed types of train in the UK.

Type of Vehicle

Flat Wagon with Specialised Modules


Marcroft & Greenbrier, Poland

Build Dates


Total Built

50 Single Wagons

Wheel Configuration


Operated By

Network Rail

Main Duties

Rail Head Treatment

In Service Until


Surviving Examples

All in Service